Novuna Vehicle Solutions, one of the UK’s largest fleet leasing providers and a leading advocate for zero-emission vehicles, today announces it has been awarded funding of over £2.1 million as part of the Tees Valley Hydrogen Vehicle Ecosystem (HYVE) Consortium, which will showcase the first large-scale deployment of fuel cell electric HGVs in the UK.
The £7 million project, part of the Tees Valley Hydrogen Transport Hub, is being funded by the Department for Transport and delivered in partnership by Innovate UK. The programme will unlock at least £15 million of private investment. Led by project coordinator ERM, the consortium will support the rollout and maintenance of fleets of fuel cell HGVs in the Tees Valley commencing later this year, supported by the construction of a strategically located hydrogen refuelling station by Exolum at their Riverside Terminal.
The publicly accessible refuelling station, near to Middlesbrough town centre and at the intersection of the A19 and A66, will be capable of dispensing up to 1.5 tonnes of hydrogen per day.
As the selected HGV leasing partner within the consortium, Novuna Vehicle Solutions will work alongside German manufacturer Quantron AG, to build, fund and manage the in-life maintenance of more than 20 fuel cell electric HGVs ranging from 4.2 to 27 tonnes deployed in the project.
These vehicles, which will be used by some of the region’s largest vehicle operators within the logistics, infrastructure, utilities and home delivery sectors, will replace diesel vehicles, reducing local air pollution and carbon emissions. Data monitoring and performance evaluation will be provided by the School of Computer Engineering and Digital Technologies at Teesside University, who have extensive experience in the fuel cell field.
Jon Lawes, Managing Director of Novuna Vehicle Solutions, said:
“This project is crucial to removing barriers and addressing the needs of operators at every stage of the ecosystem, in turn realising the commercial viability of hydrogen, at scale, and transforming the heavy transport sector which has been left behind in the road to net zero fleets. With our experience and unique capability to build, fund and manage the in-life maintenance across all vehicle types, including HGVs, we’re looking forward to collaborating with other selected participants to create a cleaner transport sector and ultimately unlock the vast potential of fuel cell hydrogen vehicles.
“Being firmly at the forefront in addressing the challenges of decarbonising heavy-duty vehicles complements our broader zero emissions strategy which is already comprehensively supporting fleets transition to Electric Vehicles.”
Novuna Vehicle Solutions, which manages over 140,000 vehicles across the UK and Europe ranging from cars and vans to HGVs and specialised assets, is also currently in discussion to support separate trials of Hydrogen vehicles for Network Rail.
Andreas Haller, CEO and Founder of Quantron AG, added:
“We are proud to be a part of this initiative. Bringing our innovative QUANTRON INSIDE technology to the UK marks a significant step forward in our global strategy and we are delighted to do this in collaboration with our partner Novuna. We are building hydrogen vehicles that reflect our commitment to sustainability to set a new environmentally friendly standard for long-haul transportation.”