Toyota is leading a consortium to develop a prototype hydrogen fuel cell-powered version of its world-famous Hilux pick-up at the company’s UK vehicle plant in Burnaston, Derbyshire. Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK (TMUK) has successfully secured UK Government funding for the project through the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), an organisation supporting the development of cleaner technologies and new mobility concepts.
This new opportunity to bring zero-emission technology to the commercial vehicle market reflects evolving customer demand and Toyota’s 360-degree approach to sustainable mobility across all sectors. The APC funding will enable TMUK to develop hydrogen technologies for this specific vehicle market segment during the next three years.
The consortium, led by Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK (TMUK) will receive funding to cover the development of a fuel cell electric hydrogen Hilux, working in collaboration with highly skilled UK-based technical engineering partners Ricardo, ETL, D2H and Thatcham Research. The project will make use of components from Toyota’s second-generation fuel cell system, as featured in the latest Toyota Mirai saloon, to transform a Hilux into an electric vehicle. While TMUK is leading the project, Toyota Motor Europe (TME) R&D will provide technical support to help the UK-based teams to build their expertise and become self-sufficient in developing next-generation hydrogen drivetrain technologies.
The APC, is a non-profit organisation working with the UK Government, the automotive industry and academic bodies to accelerate the industrialisation of technologies to support the transition to net-zero emission vehicle delivery. It plays a key role in the UK’s automotive sector, offering opportunities to bridge the gap between industry and future technological requirements. It aims to help achieve significant changes in the industry, creating commercial and strategic outcomes that benefit the UK. Its funding specifically covers the later-stage research and development that progresses a product from proof-of-concept to a prototype vehicle.
About the consortium members
Ricardo is a global strategic engineering and environmental consultancy specialising in the transport, energy and scarce resources sectors. It will support the technical integration of the fuel cell components into the Hilux chassis.
ETL (European Thermodynamics) is committed to delivering high-integrity thermal solutions through excellence in design and innovation
The D2H group of companies provides high-technology engineering services in simulation, modelling, aerodynamics, thermodynamics and design for motorsport and other high-performance industries. Its thermodynamic expertise will be crucial to the project.
Thatcham Research was established by the UK’s motor insurance industry in 1969, with the aim of containing or reducing the cost of motor insurance claims while maintaining safety standards. It will support the project in terms of crash safety and insurance ratings.