HomeIndustry SectorsFuture EnergyAn all-electric future for heavy-duty vehicles

An all-electric future for heavy-duty vehicles

One step closer to an emission-free future. Toyota has announced it will start assembling its own fuel cell for heavy-duty commercial vehicles at its Kentucky plant in 2023.

After thousands of miles of real-world testing in the harsh environment of commercial trucking, Toyota is preparing to further expand its portfolio approach to products by taking its ground-breaking hydrogen-powered fuel cell (FC) electric technology from prototypes to production in its efforts toward carbon neutrality.

Starting in 2023, a dedicated line at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky (TMMK) will begin assembling integrated dual fuel cell modules destined for use in hydrogen-powered, heavy-duty commercial trucks.

The FC modules bring Toyota’s electrification strategy further into focus as it will allow truck manufacturers to incorporate emissions-free fuel cell electric technology into existing platforms with the technical support of Toyota under the hood.

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Tetsuo Ogawa, president and chief executive officer, Toyota Motor North America: “We’re bringing our proven electric technology to a whole new class of production vehicles.

“Heavy-duty truck manufacturers will be able to buy a fully integrated and validated fuel cell electric drive system, allowing them to offer their customers an emissions-free option in the Class 8 heavy-duty segment.”

The dual-fuel cell modules, which are a key component of an overall FC kit, weigh approximately 1,400 pounds and can deliver up to 160kW of continuous power. The FC kit also includes a high voltage battery, electric motors, transmission and hydrogen storage assembly from top-tier suppliers.

Toyota will also offer its powertrain integration expertise that will help truck manufacturers adapt these emissions-free drivetrain systems to a wide variety of applications in the heavy-duty trucking sector.

David Rosier, Toyota Kentucky powertrain head: “This second-generation fuel cell system is necessary for a carbon-neutral future. It delivers over 300 miles of range at a full load weight of 80,000 lbs., all while demonstrating exceptional drivability, quiet operation and zero harmful emissions.”

Heavy-duty vehicles are a key component to achieving a carbon-neutral future in public transport. With the new tech development on electric batteries, we hope there is a trickle-down effect on fuel cell development in developing nations.

Also of interest:
Electric vehicles and charging infrastructure will be unpacked at Smarter Mobility Africa on 5 – 7 October 2021.