First Hydrogenan automotive and energy developer, has unveiled its first zero-emission light commercial vehicles (LCVs) after beginning track-based testing.
The First Hydrogen Fuel Cell-powered Vans (FCEV) have started performance testing at the HORIBA MIRA Proving Ground near Birmingham, UK. These track tests will validate the safety and performance of the LCVs prior to handover from powertrain specialists AVL to First Hydrogen. In October 2022 the vehicles were approved for use on the UK road ahead of a series of road trials with major UK operators beginning in January 2023. The vehicles will undergo final testing to optimize operational performance before being available to the fleet. Operator trials are scheduled to begin in the new year.
The company’s first vehicles have a range more than five times that of their battery-electric equivalent – achieving a range of 400-600 km on a single fueling compared to the battery-electric van’s 115 km range at the same top speed. With a refueling time of approximately five minutes, the time it takes to run First Hydrogen’s FCEVs significantly undercuts the five hours it takes to charge a battery-electric delivery truck.
The company’s vehicle demonstrator program, created to encourage acceptance and whet the appetite of the market, will inform development for future vehicle trials in the 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 to be launched over the next few years. The global light commercial vehicle market is expected to reach $786.5 billion by 2030. These vehicles, along with First Hydrogen’s complete Hydrogen-as-a-Service (HaaS) solution, which provides green hydrogen fuel, distribution and complementary vehicle management services, will help the sector meet zero emissions targets.