First Hydrogen, an automotive and energy developer, has revealed its first zero emission light commercial vehicles (LCVs) after commencing track-based testing.
The First Hydrogen fuel cell-powered vans (FCEV) have commenced performance tests at the HORIBA MIRA Proving Ground, located near Birmingham, UK. These track tests will confirm the safety and performance of the LCVs prior to handover from powertrain specialists AVL to First Hydrogen. In October 2022, the vehicles were certified for UK road use ahead of a series of road trials with major UK operators, which start in January 2023. The vehicles will undertake final testing designed to fine tune operational performance, before they will be available for fleet operator trials to commence in the New Year.
The company’s inaugural vehicles have more than five times more range capability than their battery electric equivalent – achieving 400-600km range on a single fuelling compared to the 115km range of the battery electric van running at the same maximum speed. With a refuelling time of approximately five minutes, the time required to power First Hydrogen’s FCEVs dramatically undercuts the five hours it takes to recharge a battery electric van.
Created to encourage adoption and whet the market appetite, the company’s vehicle demonstrator program will inform development for future vehicle trials in European Union, United States and Canada. Feedback and high-level purchase commitments will also support the design and development of First Hydrogen’s next generation of vehicles, which it plans to bring to market in the next few years. The global light commercial vehicle market is projected to reach $786.5bn by 2030. These vehicles, together with First Hydrogen’s complete Hydrogen-as-a-Service (HaaS) solution, which supplies green hydrogen fuel, distribution and complementing vehicle management services, will help the sector meet zero emission targets.