Commercial partnership expedites the decarbonisation of road transport in NZ

Hydrogen truck maker, Hyzon Motors, has been commissioned by a New Zealand energy company to produce zero emission Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs).

The hydrogen fuel cell-powered trucks, to be assembled at Hyzon’s facility in Winschoten, the Netherlands, will be manufactured in full compliance with local New Zealand requirements and the first batch of vehicles are expected to enter service in New Zealand by the end of 2021.

Hyzon plans to have up to 1500 fuel cell trucks on the road in New Zealand by 2026 as part of the agreement with Hiringa.

This follows Hyzon’s announcement on 9 February 2021 that it had entered into a merger agreement with Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corporation.

The vehicle supply agreement builds on the signing of a Heads of Agreement between the two companies in August 2020, setting Hyzon and Hiringa on a path towards decarbonising the New Zealand heavy transport sector through cooperation on hydrogen infrastructure and heavy duty Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) deployment.

“Hyzon will leverage its team’s deep experience in the development and deployment of world-class fuel cell equipment in trucks internationally, to bring zero emission transport technology to New Zealand.” Hyzon Motors said in a statement.

“Meanwhile, as part of the agreement, Hiringa will build a green hydrogen refuelling network for vehicle fuel supply, to establish New Zealand as the global benchmark in fuel cell-powered logistics.”

Hyzon’s trucks will be powered by green hydrogen supplied through Hiringa’s nationwide fuel infrastructure. The network is on track to commence refuelling operations in 2021, expanding to eight hydrogen stations across New Zealand’s North and South Islands in 2022, servicing 100 per cent of the North Island and 82 per cent of the South Island’s heavy freight routes. The Hyzon trucks are designed to meet New Zealand road requirements and the demands of heavy freight applications.

The trucks, according to the manufacturer, will be built in a 6×4 configuration, will include a sleeper cab option and will have a Gross Combination Mass (GCM) of 58 tonnes and range of 680km.

“We see New Zealand as an attractive market for the deployment of our hydrogen fuel cell technology,” said Hyzon Motors CEO, Craig Knight.

“The hydrogen supply network designed by Hiringa is a key enabler for the realisation of our decarbonisation strategy.

“This partnership aims to position New Zealand as a global leader in the adoption of zero emission heavy vehicle technology, and we are pleased to be playing a major role in this transition. Deploying 1500 fuel cell trucks by 2026 is going to make a massive contribution to local decarbonisation efforts,” he said.

Hiringa Chairperson, Cathy Clennett, said the truck order is a significant milestone and the culmination of work between both parties.

“We are very excited to have New Zealand road compliant heavy trucks capable of meeting New Zealand’s transport needs arriving in country this year,” she said.

“This is a key step to decarbonising our road transport, a growing industry that Kiwis rely on everyday as it supplies us with food, products, and essential goods.

“We are pleased leading New Zealand brands are stepping up to participate in this exciting initiative. Consumers and companies are becoming more aware of emissions and together with Hyzon we are providing kiwi businesses with a viable solution.”

Hiringa CEO, Andrew Clennett, said this is the next step in the business’ strategy to roll out over 1500 heavy FCEVs by 2026.

“Alongside our partners, we are driving the cost of the technology down and unlocking widespread adoption of zero emission heavy transport for New Zealanders,” he said.