Glasgow-based start-up Hydrogen Vehicle Systems has built two prototype hydrogen-fuel-cell powered commercial vehicles with UK government support: a chassis cab for an ambulance, and a technical demonstrator vehicle, a rigid-bodied 9,000- to 15,000-pound-GVW medium-duty truck. It’s now developing a 38,000-pound-GVW heavy-duty 4×2 tractor unit that will have an 80,000-pound gross combination weight rating.
According to Peter Clarke, engineering director at HVS, five fuel-cell-powered tractor units are now being built. These will be tested extensively on test tracks and in the field during 2023/2024. It is anticipated that pre-series production will start at the end of 2024, with production ramped up in 2025 for UK customers. In the first year, HVS anticipates an output of some 100-250 4×2 tractors, with plans to have scaled production to some 18,500 vehicles by 2031.
Ford to Supply DHL with 2,000 Electric Vans
Ford Pro and Deutsche Post DHL Group recently signed a memorandum of understanding to accelerate the deployment of electrified vans used for logistics operations worldwide.
Ford Pro will equip DHL with more than 2,000 electric delivery vans worldwide by the end of 2023, including the all-new E-Transit.
The agreement covers a full suite of solutions to operate the electric fleet, including access to Ford Pro’s connected E-Telematics software and charging solutions in order to reduce costs and optimize efficiency.
Ford is targeting zero emissions for all vehicle sales and carbon neutrality across its European footprint of facilities, logistics and suppliers by 2035, and carbon neutrality globally no later than 2050. DHL plans to invest 7 billion euros in the current decade on its path to net-zero emissions logistics.
News Briefs from Around the World
Amazon recently joined world road-transport organization IRU to work on areas that are critical to its large chain of logistics partners and the global road transport sector. Common challenges include sustainability and decarbonization, road safety, and artificial intelligence.
Canada & UK: Canadian-based Westport Fuel Systems is working with Johnson Matthey, a specialty chemicals company based in London, to develop an aftertreatment system for its hydrogen combustion system. Last May, Westport unveiled a high-pressure direct injection system that can be used in an internal combustion engine to make it run on hydrogen. Although the main by-product of hydrogen combustion is water, the process also produces harmful oxides such as NOx, thus the need for aftertreatment.
Europe: Pressure Systems International signed an agreement with Germany-based Celerity DRS to continue as P.S.I.’s exclusive commercial partner in Europe and surrounding areas. Celerity DRS is positioned for new rules requiring all trailers built in Europe after July 2024 to be equipped with either automatic tire inflation systems or tire pressure monitoring systems.
UK: British electric vehicle manufacturer Tevva announced it’s the first British company to get European Community Whole Vehicle Type Approval for its 7.5-tonne (15,000-pound GVW) battery-electric truck. This means that Tevva can start producing and selling in volume across the UK and Europe. The company expects to sell up to 1,000 electric trucks in 2023.
China: MingZhu Logistics Holdings plans to deploy 700 new-generation hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, signing a deal with a major dealer for Dongfeng trucks. The trucks are scheduled to be delivered between May 5 and Oct. 5 this year.
Sweden: Electric trucks are now in use for container traffic at the Port of Gothenburg. Skaraslättens Transport hauls 850-900 containers daily to Swedish container ports. The company has deployed two electric trucks — with a third truck joining them shortly.
This news was featured in the Janurary/February 2023 issue of Heavy Duty Trucking.