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MAN Truck & Bus announces zero-emissions vehicle expansion

MAN has announced a pioneering foray into the hydrogen space for its latest series of zero-emissions trucks

Vehicle manufacturer MAN Truck & Bus has revealed it is expanding its zero-emissions portfolio with the release of a small hydrogen combustion truck series planned.

The commercial vehicle manufacturer says it will be the first European truck producer to launch a small series with a hydrogen combustion engine.

The initially planned small series of roughly 200 units will be delivered to customers in Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Iceland and selected non-European countries from as early as next year.

The MAN hTGX will offer an alternative zero-emissions drive variant for special applications, such as transporting heavy goods in the construction, tank and timber transport sectors.

MAN Truck & Bus executive board member Friedrich Baumann says the hTGX can also be an environmentally friendly alternative to battery electric trucks for areas that lack sufficient charging infrastructure.

“We are continuing to focus on battery-electric vehicles to decarbonise road freight transport. These currently have clear advantages over other drive concepts in terms of energy efficiency and operating and energy costs,” Baumann says.

“However, trucks powered by hydrogen combustion engines are a useful addition for special applications and markets. We anticipate that we will be able to best serve the vast majority of our customers’ transport applications with battery-powered trucks.

“For special applications, hydrogen combustion or, in the future, fuel cell technology is a suitable supplement.”

The hydrogen combustion engine H45 is based on the proven D38 diesel engine and is produced at MAN’s engine and battery plant in Nuremberg.

“The use of familiar technology enables us to enter the market at an early stage and thus provides a decisive impetus for the ramp-up of the hydrogen infrastructure,” Baumann says.

“With the hTGX, we have now added an attractive product to our zero-emission portfolio.”

This new release coincides with MAN handing over its battery electric truck to customers for the first time this year, with scale up planned from 2025.

MAN says the hydrogen drive is particularly suitable for special transport tasks that require a special axle configuration or where there is no space to fit the battery on the frame due to the need for truck body work.

“The new CO2 regulations at EU level will classify trucks with hydrogen combustion engines as zero-emission vehicles. This means that such vehicles fully contribute to our CO2 fleet targets, which also opens the door for this small series that complements battery electric vehicles,” MAN executive board member for research and development Dr Frederik Zohm says.

“At the same time, depending on the country, our customers benefit from corresponding toll reductions. For example, at MAN’s Nuremberg site, we have the most innovative engine technology and decades of experience in the use of hydrogen as a fuel, so we are utilising this and presenting a real MAN with the MAN hTGX.

“The new hydrogen combustion truck is based on the tried-and-tested TG vehicle series and impresses with the highest quality and uncomplicated maintenance. We will continue to research fuel cell technology based on battery technology and hydrogen.

“H2 fuel technology is also in preparation at MAN. However, it will be several years before the technology is really ready for the market and competitive.”

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