UK Gets First Hydrogen Truck With Tevva Launch

Tevva’s Hydrogen Electric Truck Will Have A Range Of Up To 310 Miles, Hydrogen Tanks Can Be Refilled In 10 Minutes

Tevva’s first hydrogen fuel cell-supported heavy goods vehicle. (Image Courtesy Of Tevva)

Electric and hydrogen truck company, Tevva, launched the first hydrogen fuel cell-supported heavy goods vehicle (HGV) to be manufactured, designed, and mass produced in the United Kingdom. The Tilbury-headquartered scale-up, which has so far raised US$140 million in funding, unveiled its hydrogen electric vehicle (HEV) alongside its latest full-battery electric HGV at the Road Transport Expo in Warwickshire, UK.

Hydrogen has been used safely in buses and other vehicles in more than 20 countries for many years and has a higher energy density than lithium-ion batteries or even diesel. Because of these properties, it is particularly attractive for use in larger, commercial vehicles. By adding a hydrogen fuel cell system to its battery-electric HGV design, Tevva is delivering zero-emissions solutions that will work for the overwhelming majority of fleet operators across a range of industries and sectors. The fuel cell system tops up the battery, extending the vehicle’s range and allowing the truck to carry heavier loads over longer distances.

Tevva said that one advantage of using the fuel cell as a range extender, rather than the primary source of power, is that it allows the company to provide smaller, cheaper, and lighter fuel cells and operate these at the highest possible efficiency. Tevva believes that its 8.3-ton (7.5-tonne) hydrogen electric truck comfortably meets and exceeds demanding duty cycles for nearly all urban and extra-urban use cases. If scaled successfully, Tevva’s product could allow its customers to drive for longer with a range of up to 310 miles (500 km).

Hydrogen refueling typically takes a similar time to diesel truck refueling (5 to 20 minutes) and the dual use of both battery electric and hydrogen energy sources futureproofs Tevva and its customers as the transition away from fossil fuels and the decarbonization of the transport industry continues. Tevva cited 2019 UK government figures that said that HGVs contributed 18% of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector.

Alongside its 24/7 customer support, Tevva will offer hydrogen services to customers, helping customers to access sustainable and affordable hydrogen supplies safely and conveniently, alongside their purchase or lease of Tevva hydrogen trucks. Tevva is onboarding hydrogen suppliers that can provide hydrogen services to cater to the needs of its customer base.

“We are excited to launch our hydrogen electric HGV, creating a landmark moment for Tevva and UK manufacturing,” said Tevva CEO and founder Asher Bennett. “We firmly believe that the post-fossil fuel future, which is quickly approaching, will see a new range of technologies and fuels take center stage in the transport industry. By embracing hydrogen, we are futureproofing ourselves, our clients, and the industries and communities they operate in. Combined with our commitment to customer service, we believe that Tevva’s hydrogen electric truck will be a popular choice for fleet operators across the UK, Europe, and eventually North America. We have reached this milestone by leveraging years of experience designing, innovating, and manufacturing dual-energy vehicles.”

“I am very proud that the technology we have supported through our collaborative research and development program is now being put to real-world use,” said Zoe Hall, Head of Competitions and Projects at Tevva’s Advanced Propulsion Center. “The launch of this truck, with its hydrogen fuel cell range extender, is an exciting outcome of the APC-funded project to completely eliminate carbon dioxide at the tailpipe and lower the total cost of ownership compared to existing diesel vehicles. This smart zero-emissions vehicle, with rare earth metal-free electric motors, has the potential to make heavy goods transport sustainable.”