HVS Unveils UK’s First Zero Emission Hydrogen-Electric HGV  With Class-Leading 370 Mile Range

4 May 2023
Blog Feature Image

Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS) is a new UK-based hydrogen vehicle emerging OEM and innovator in the heavy-duty commercial vehicle segment 

Today, HVS unveils its 40-tonne HGV technology demonstrator, featuring a unique powertrain and radical cab design, making it the first indigenous UK Hydrogen HGV, designed and built from the ground up Class-leading 370 mile (600 kilometre) range can be refuelled in 20 minutes 

A reinvention of commercial vehicle design, aimed at optimising range, payload, weight distribution, direct vision, aerodynamics and ergonomically practical cab design, produces a sector-leading vehicle HVS’ strategic investor, EG Group, enables route-to-market through fleet operator connections and infrastructure development via their international refuelling site network 

HGVs are the second largest contributors to UK transport emissions. They make up a disproportionate amount of road transport emissions (18%) whilst only contributing 5% of vehicle mileage. HGV numbers are increasing on the roads, so this emissions figure is likely to increase. Fuelled by close-coupled green hydrogen (hydrogen produced directly by renewable energy sources such as hydro, wind or solar)

Glasgow 18th April 2023: Zero-emission, hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle innovator, Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS), has today laid out its plans to disrupt the haulage industry, unveiling a clean sheet-designed hydrogen-electric Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV).

Showcasing its game-changing hydrogen powertrain in the form of a 40-tonne HGV technology demonstrator underlines the company’s objective of being the first indigenous UK designed and developed hydrogen-electric HGV on the market. 

Founded in 2017, in Glasgow, HVS focuses on the ground-up design and development of zero-emission hydrogen-powered commercial vehicles. The company comprises industry specialists, with vast experience in the automotive, energy, hydrogen technology, power electronics, sustainability and environmental management fields. 

With government targets to curtail sales of all non-zero emission 3.5 -26t HGVs set to come into play by 2035 or earlier and all sales of new non-zero emission HGVs by 2040, HVS and its world-leading technology have the potential to play a crucial role in allowing emissions reduction targets to be achieved.   

The company also has a defined route to market. In addition to funding from the Advanced Propulsion Centre, Innovate UK, Scottish Enterprise and Energy Technology Partnership, HVS’ strategic investment partner is the service station and grocery corporation, EG Group, offering hydrogen refuelling infrastructure, fleet customer base and the potential for global scalability. 

HVS CEO Jawad Khursheed said: “We are delighted to reveal our 40-tonne HGV at the Commercial Vehicle Show. This technology demonstrator showcases our ground-breaking hydrogen-electric commercial vehicle design and advanced powertrain technology. Our zero-emission trucks are a key part of decarbonising the logistics sector. Hydrogen is the perfect fuel for the haulage industry, offering long ranges and quick refuelling thanks to stations being easily integrated into existing key transport networks. 

“What’s more, we will supply our customers with the most advanced HGV in the sector delivering a step change in driving experience and efficiency.” 

Breaking the mould 

HVS’ tractor units will be built on an all-new chassis, designed in-house around the hydrogen powertrain, which consists of pressurised hydrogen cylinders, fuel cells, an energy storage system and electrified rear axle.

Designed in-house by Pete Clarke, Head of Design, who has a wealth of experience designing commercial vehicles that he brings to bear on HVS’ striking truck designs, the unique ground-up design brings innovation in packaging, performance, efficiency, weight, range, consumption, maintenance, and lifecycle benefits. The technology demonstrator’s unique design allows significantly improved aerodynamics compared with current Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) trucks. 

Consequent benefits include enhanced fuel efficiency on long-haul runs and improved spatial ergonomics within the cab, including better access and more room at the controls, not to mention sector-leading aesthetics. 

Driver comfort is taken care of, and stress levels are reduced, all contributing to a safer and more efficient operational experience. Confidence-inspiring too, since the driver will be well aware that they are abreast of the latest technology. 

State-of-the-art fuel cell stack 

HVS’ vehicle powertrain employs a fuel cell system and energy storage system to deploy electricity to an electric motor to transmit power to the wheels. It uses the KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) to recapture energy under braking and while the truck is slowing down. 

The integrated powertrain is controlled with HVS’ advanced control system ‘SEMAS,’ which monitors interactions between drivers and control systems, delivering class-leading fuel efficiency and durability. 

The fuel cell permits longer range, higher load-carrying capacity, and faster refuelling than would be possible using battery-electric technology alone: typical refuelling time is comparable to diesel, around 20 minutes to replenish the high pressure hydrogen tanks. It is in the long-distance HGV segment that hydrogen fuel cells offer the most advantages. 

The only emission from the vehicle is water vapour, meaning there are no harmful greenhouse gas emissions of any kind. 

Long ranges and quick fill-ups

Depending on the journey the route travelled, road conditions and driving style HVS’ HGV has the capacity to travel up to 370 miles (600km). 

Hydrogen-powered vehicles don’t need charging like a battery-powered Electric Vehicle. They are refuelled with hydrogen gas, stored at pressure in hydrogen cylinders. Refuelling takes a much shorter time than charging an equivalent battery vehicle and is comparable to filling a truck with diesel (about 15 to 20 minutes). Many hydrogen fuelling stations will be located at existing commercial vehicle forecourts, using dispensers that look very similar to conventional petrol and diesel ones, but with a different nozzle. 

UK-based production 

HVS is Headquartered in Glasgow, Scotland, and is undertaking development work at Horiba MIRA, Nuneaton, Warwickshire. HVS envisages that it will open an R&D, engineering and pilot production facility alongside a permanent UK-based production facility. A workforce of circa 600 employees is predicted across all key disciplines, with many recruits coming from the automotive and aerospace industries. It’s likely that a further 10,000 workers will be involved in the UK supply chain, boosting the skills base. 

Other variants of the hydrogen-fuelled 4×2 HGV tractor unit, including a left-hand drive variant, are also in the pipeline. 

Thanks to the fresh thinking and ground-up approach, HVS has created a HGV that offers the complete package; from game-changing technology and driver ergonomics to easy maintenance, all packaged into a striking design. EG Group’s investment secures crucial hydrogen fuelling infrastructure and a route to market.

For further information, contact: 

media@hvs.com / +44 (0) 7811 166 796 

HVS (Hydrogen Vehicle Systems) is a UK company founded 2017. From innovative powertrain design to ground up production, HVS aims to disrupt the commercial vehicle industry by being an early mover with the most advanced, all new zero emission HGV. Leading the way in hydrogen electric vehicle design, HVS is pioneering cutting-edge solutions that will decarbonise one of the heaviest polluting sectors worldwide. Combining unique design, efficiency, and performance; HVS will provide the ultimate driver experience at lower costs and lowest emissions. 

Top Facts 

Based on HVS’ conservative sales projections, by 2030 the new UK fleet of hydrogen HGV’s displacing diesel vehicles could prevent more CO2 and noxious air emissions than the reported annual emissions of Heathrow airport. 

Green hydrogen is an infinitely renewable fuel. It is made using renewable electricity to split water (H2O) into hydrogen and oxygen. In the fuel cell, hydrogen recombines with oxygen from the air to produce heat, power and water. 

Fuel Cells were invented in the UK by a Welsh scientist Sir William Grove in 1839. The UK is home to leading international hydrogen production, supply and storage industries, and HVS is an emerging OEM.

REGISTER FOR A FREE VISITOR PASS

Register Now
Your privacy

We and our partners use technologies, such as cookies, and process personal data, such as IP addresses and cookie identifiers, to personalise ads and content based on your interests, measure the performance of ads and content, and derive insights about the audiences who saw ads and content. Click below to consent to the use of this technology and the processing of your personal data for these purposes. View our privacy policy.