New Zealand’s Hiringa Energy and US-based HYZON Motors Inc. have signed a Heads of
Agreement that secures access for Hiringa and its fleet partners to the supply of zero emission
Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGV) powered by zero emission hydrogen fuel cell technology.
The heavy fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) will be tailored to meet the demanding and unique requirements of the New Zealand heavy freight and road transport sector and it is expected that the vehicles will enter service in New Zealand from the start of 2021.
This agreement supports Hiringa and its partners’ strategy to roll out over 1,500 FCEVs by
2026, driving the cost of the technology down and unlocking widespread adoption of zero
emission heavy transport.
The trucks will come in a variety of right-hand drive configurations with a gross combined
mass (GCM) of over 50t and suitable for New Zealand operators including 8x4 and 6x4 rigid
and prime movers with driving distances of up to 500km.
The FCEVs combine hydrogen (stored on board the vehicle) and oxygen (from the air) to make electricity to power the vehicle. The only tailpipe emission is water vapour. FCEV trucks have the benefit of being an electric vehicle, but with a similar weight and power output to regular diesel-powered trucks, and have a similar refuelling time of around 15-20 minutes.
The trucks will be fuelled by Hiringa’s nationwide hydrogen refuelling network located on key
partner sites such as Waitomo Group’s existing Fuel Stops.
The network will commence refuelling operations in 2021, expanding to eight stations across the North and South Islands by 2022 as part of a Phase 1 network infrastructure plan, servicing 100% of the North Island and 82% of the South Island heavy freight routes.
The Phase 2 expansion will increase the network to at least 24 stations by 2025, providing coverage for 95% of all heavy vehicle routes throughout New Zealand.
This news builds upon the continued momentum with the New Zealand government’s recent provisional support of $20 million towards the establishment of Hiringa’s nationwide refuelling network. This support demonstrates the advanced stage of development of the company’s plans and the government’s commitment to zero emissions transport.