Ricardo supports Toyota to develop its first UK-based hydrogen light commercial vehicle

Posted on 2 Dec 2022 by The Manufacturer

Ricardo, a global strategic, environmental, and engineering consulting company, is supporting Toyota, in partnership with the APC, on a significant, multi-year project to develop its first zero emission light commercial hydrogen vehicle in the UK.

The Toyota Hilux hydrogen vehicle will be the first of its kind, manufactured and assembled at Toyota’s Derby-based facility and is scheduled for prototype production in 2023. Ricardo has been chosen as a partner by Toyota due to its proven experience in applying advanced propulsion technologies and expertise in hydrogen fuel cell integration, including for the UK’s first hydrogen transport hub.

Ricardo is working alongside Toyota and the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) on the development of the automotive manufacturer’s first hydrogen light commercial vehicle set for prototype production in the UK

Ricardo’s role in the project is to integrate the complete hydrogen fuel cell, fuel storage system, and controls including design, analysis and validation. The integration ensures efficient operation of all systems to give an excellent vehicle range and supports attributes for longevity and reliability. Working as part of the consortium, Ricardo will support the delivery of a complete turnkey solution, which will create greater agility for Toyota in the UK supply base and a quicker turnaround in the design of low volume manufacturing.

Adrian Schaffer, President of Emerging Mobility, Automotive and Industrial at Ricardo, said: “Ricardo is world-renowned for its innovation, R&D capabilities and is a trusted engineering partner to businesses operating in the global automotive, aerospace, rail, environmental and defence sectors. We’re delighted to be working on this project, applying our expertise in the integration of technologies, and supporting the production of a first-of-a-kind for Toyota in Europe and the UK. Our engineering expertise and experience in hydrogen fuel technology and its integration into a variety of applications across several sectors, including light commercial vehicles, is supporting our growth in this industry.”

Richard Kenworthy, Managing Director, Toyota Motor Manufacturing (UK) said, “This project represents a key moment for Toyota here in the UK. The development and manufacture of hydrogen related technologies is paramount to this sector’s drive towards zero emissions. Working alongside a well-respected engineering company such as Ricardo with considerable experience in this field will allow us to shorten the development time towards the integration of this technology in this vehicle segment. Their capabilities and experience will play a significant role in the success of this project.”

Ian Constance, Chief Executive at the APC said: “Supporting vital research and development in the UK, now more than ever, provides an opportunity to invest in transport decarbonisation as well as boost growth in the automotive sector. The funding announced today furthers world-leading innovation in net-zero technology for the automotive sector and beyond. These fantastic projects, including the Toyota-led project to develop a hydrogen Hilux, are all collaborative by design, led by high-profile companies with innovative SME and academic partners, representing great UK industry.”

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