UK-based hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle tech firm Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS), has unveiled a modular platform, which it claims offers Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) operators maximum flexibility from a single base vehicle.
The company’s tractor unit will be available with two different types of e-axle – one medium power and one high power – and with up to three hydrogen tanks, depending on the customer’s range requirements. In addition, the hydrogen fuel cell powertrain can be specified with two different power outputs depending on the customer’s payload and mission requirements.
The modular platform is built on a fixed wheelbase, which means the vehicle’s footprint does not change, irrespective of specification.
HVS’s vehicle design includes a suspended cab at the front and a fixed tower at the rear, housing the thermal and powertrain systems.
This platform format breaks with the industry-standard tradition of variable cab types and sizes – such as big, medium and small, and high/low-roof – and means that even the smallest variants have the same spacious cab as the largest models.
Pete Clarke, Head of Design at HVS said: “We’re offering maximum modularity within a single base vehicle platform, and we would never have been able to achieve this level of flexibility and optimisation with a diesel-powertrain derived vehicle design.
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“Our vehicles have been created for a fundamentally different technology within an all-new package, so every cubic millimetre has been designed afresh. We initially calculated the maximum wheelbase possible to achieve the required turning circle and manoeuvrability for the target market. The design process then began with the optimal powertrain format, around which the vehicle design was then created – ensuring that form followed function.
“Rather than playing with a configurator, HVS can put the best value package together for customers based on information about what they do, the loads they will carry, along with their ranges and routes.”