H2X, an Australian hydrogen technology startup with a strong focus on Europe, has released the rollout details of its hydrogen-powered Warrego pickup truck.
Something of a “demonstration” vehicle, the first Warrego release features a 60 kW fuel cell, a 260 kW electric engine, and a range of more than 450 kilometers. The company said the model will be available to customers within the next nine months, “in line with availability of hydrogen.”
The pickup truck is now undergoing final validation and verification testing procedures in the Netherlands – one of H2X’s first markets to take off, ahead of European and global certification. The company said Australian certification testing, including right-hand drive models, will commence soon.
“It is true that we have had some frustrating delays over the past nine months, however, we are now well on track with our roll out plans,” said H2X Global CEO Brendan Norman, adding that the delays came down to supply chain issues, which have affected manufacturing throughout the world.
Tony Blackie, H2X Global’s press officer, has told pv magazine in the past that the company was seeking to establish the viability of hydrogen in light vehicles through the Warrego, which was based on the Ford Ranger. The feasibility of hydrogen in such applications has long been seen as dubious.
Be that as it may, H2X said it clocked AUD 50 million ($32.4 million) in order requests within four days of the Warrego pickup truck announcement in September 2021. How much that figure has grown over the past year is not known.
The Warrego’s fuel cell connects to a hybrid battery/supercapacitor electric drive system.
“This is connected to a 700-bar type four-hydrogen tank system constructed of an advanced polymer and carbon fiber base,” the company said, noting that the design delivers safety. “While this will allow the car to work at the lower 350 bar compression, it has the capability to run at much higher compression rates which will double the range per tank.”
The pickup truck will be produced in Europe and at H2X’s facility in Victoria.
“The Warrego is essentially a demonstration vehicle which we are able to offer to several customers in order to accelerate the availability of an AWD light commercial vehicles to customers,” Norman said. “This application will be applied in a more optimised form in the Darling Delivery Van and Taxi/MPV targeted for release by the end of 2024 to support the large number of cities in Europe which will be closed off from diesel and petrol vehicles from 2025.”
Europe is really where the company is focusing its attention in terms of vehicles. Norman said this is for a number of reasons, but mainly because hydrogen is available at the customer level in several cities where orders have been high and governments are keen to develop their hydrogen economy.
Longer term, H2X is eyeing Australia’s agricultural sector. Earlier this month, it launched the first of its hydrogen-powered generators to the Australian market, built to replace traditional fossil-fuel fired gensets and provide green electricity for emergency supply and off-grid operations.
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