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UK government unveils fund to boost green economic recovery in automotive sector

The UK’s automotive industry is set to benefit from a £73.5mn government investment to develop green technologies and safeguard jobs.

A total of 10 projects across the UK will receive a share of this new investment to develop cutting-edge technology for the next generation of electric taxis, cars and vans – including recyclable batteries, advanced electrical systems and ultra-lightweight components.

This funding will contribute to the automotive sector’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic by safeguarding more than 14,000 UK research and manufacturing jobs. It will also enable the manufacture of a greater volume of low emission cars, commercial vehicles and components in the UK, according to UK Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi, ensuring automotive companies play their part in keeping the UK on the path to net zero emissions by 2050.

Companies set to benefit include Ford Technologies, BMW Motorsport, Jaguar Land Rover and the London Electric Vehicle Company, manufacturer of electric taxis.

The successful projects were chosen by the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), which aims to maintain the UK’s position as a centre of excellence for the research and development of low carbon vehicle technology.

The projects to receive funding are:

  • LEVC – Electric Vehicle Evolution (Coventry): the London Electric Vehicle Company will develop a new EV technology specifically for its vehicles to deliver increased efficiency and higher performance capabilities.
  • Constellium – ALIVE (Slough): this project will develop the manufacturing processes for light weight, crash-resistant battery enclosures, that will be used in ultra-low emission vehicles.
  • Cummins Turbo Technologies – TRIDENT (Huddersfield): this project will look to develop and manufacture a game-changing energy recovery platform that will deliver fuel consumption improvements.
  • Ford Technologies – eSHADOW (Basildon): this project will determine the technical, financial and environmental challenges of using advanced, lightweight materials in vehicle manufacturing.
  • Jaguar Land Rover – Hi-VIBES (Coventry): a consortium of academics and industry will create a new electronic system that will be easier to build, lighter and cheaper.
  • Avid Technology – REVO (Cramlington, near Newcastle): will help deliver improvements in electric and hybrid vehicle efficiency.
  • TEVVA – SANGREAL (Chelmsford): this project will bench-test an innovative design of axle for 7.5 to 14-tonne commercial vehicles, improving safety through better impact robustness.
  • Magnetic Systems Technology – Magtec (Sheffield): this project will be focused on utilising innovative manufacturing process and assembly methods for traction motors.
  • BMW (Motorsport) – FutureBEV (Warwick and Newport): this project aims to deliver better, more cost-efficient powertrains.
  • Jaguar Land Rover – ZEUS (Coventry): JLR is developing a prototype hydrogen fuel cell vehicle with its partners. Hydrogen can play a role as a viable fuel in the future across the automotive industry alongside battery EVs.

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