General Motors to provide Autocar heavy vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells

General Motors to provide Autocar heavy vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells

December 18, 2023 0 By Bret Williams

GM and Autocar Industries have agreed to collaborate on the development of the vehicles.

General Motors and Autocar Industries have jointly announced that they will be working together on the development of H2 powered heavy vehicles equipped with GM’s Hydrotec hydrogen fuel cells.

The companies will be collaborating on the heavy vehicles powered by the Hydrotec units.

The hydrogen fuel cells will be installed in heavy vehicles such as dump trucks, garbage trucks, cement mixers, terminal tractors and road maintenance vehicles that would conventionally be powered by diesel engines. The first of those vehicles are expected to go into production in Autocar’s Birmingham, Alabama plant in 2026.

“We want to enable zero tailpipe emissions solutions for the largest, highest energy consuming
vehicles, and fuel cells are ideal for the most energy intensive applications,” said Charlie Freese, executive director of GM’s Hydrotec in a media statement.

Hydrotec’s “power cubes” comprising over 300 hydrogen fuel cells will be installed in the vehicles.

Hydrotec’s job in the collaboration will be to provide the power cubes as well as “thermal and power management systems and proprietary controls.” Each power cube consists of more than 300 H2 fuel cells and provides 77 kilowatts of power.

Hydrogen fuel cells - Image of GM Building

Credit: Photo by

As a growing number of operators seek to decarbonize, a growing focus is being directed toward H2 for its use in powering trucks and vans. This is particularly true in areas where battery electric vehicles aren’t feasible due to the need for power, range, and rapid refueling.Memory test

While the majority of the passenger vehicle industry has gone in the direction of battery electric cars in the zero-emission category, the same cannot be said about heavier duty vehicles with far greater demands than what current battery technology can realistically provide.

As regulations change

hydrogen news ebook“As regulations change, we see Hydrotec fuel cells as an additional avenue for our customers to meet their EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) requirements with zero tailpipe emissions vehicles,” said a statement from Eric Schwartz, president of Autocar Industries.

Vehicles equipped with hydrogen fuel cells have considerably longer ranges and can refuel in minutes – timing similar to diesel refueling with which most operators are already familiar.

Ready to test your knowledge on the most abundant element in the universe? Take our fun and engaging Hydrogen Quiz now!

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