Novuna Vehicle Solutions, a major fleet leasing provider in the UK and advocate for zero-emission vehicles, has secured funding exceeding £2.1 million as part of the Tees Valley Hydrogen Vehicle Ecosystem (HYVE) consortium which will see Quantron making its debut in the UK.
The £7 million project, integrated into the Tees Valley Hydrogen Transport Hub and funded by the Department for Transport in partnership with Innovate UK, aims to showcase the first large-scale deployment of Fuel Cell electric Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) in the UK. The initiative, coordinated by ERM, is expected to unlock a minimum of £15 million in private investment.
Novuna Vehicle Solutions, selected as the HGV leasing partner in the consortium, is collaborating with German manufacturer Quantron AG to build, fund, and manage over 20 fuel cell electric HGVs, ranging from 4.2 to 27 tonnes. These vehicles will be deployed in the Tees Valley, replacing diesel counterparts and serving operators in logistics, infrastructure, utilities, and home delivery sectors, contributing to the reduction of local air pollution and carbon emissions.
The Tees Valley project includes the construction of a strategically located hydrogen refueling station near Middlesbrough town centre, at the intersection of the A19 and A66. Operated by Exolum at their Riverside Terminal, the refueling station is designed to dispense up to 1.5 tonnes of hydrogen per day.
Teesside University’s School of Computer Engineering and Digital Technologies will provide data monitoring and performance evaluation, leveraging their extensive experience in the fuel cell field.
“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,” said Jon Lawes, Managing Director of Novuna Vehicle Solutions. “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 forefont 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,” he added.
Novuna Vehicle Solutions manages a fleet of over 140,000 vehicles across the UK and Europe, spanning cars, vans, HGVs, and specialised assets. In addition to the Tees Valley project, the company is in discussions to support separate trials of hydrogen vehicles for Network Rail.
“We are proud to be a part of this initiative. Bringing our innovative 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,” explained Andreas Haller, CEO and Founder of Quantron AG. “We are building hydrogen vehicles that reflect our commitment to sustainability to set a new environmentally friendly standard for long-haul transportation.”