Hydrogen truck manufacturer Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS) has reached a major milestone with the start of prototype manufacturing at a specialist build facility in Silverstone, Northamptonshire.

HVS will build several Attribute Prototype (AP) test vehicles at the facility as part of its vehicle development programme, as the company moves closer to series production of its hydrogen fuel cell HGV. 

The 18,000sq ft facility, which is owned and operated by Tier One manufacturer Fablink, offers HVS complete-build capabilities encompassing quality assurance, logistics, a toolroom and office amenities.

The move is part of a long-term partnership between HVS and Fablink, with Fablink providing the manufacturing of cab structures, chassis, power towers and providing assembly services. The build is also being supported by manufacturing service partners HSSMI.

Lisa-Marie Cunningham, HVS interim chief operating officer, said: “We have embarked on another exciting new chapter for HVS. The Fablink team and facility provides us with the space, all the equipment and expertise essential for our build operations.

”This next project phase in Silverstone, home of automotive excellence, combined with the support of our exceptional team and manufacturing partners, positions us perfectly to successfully deliver our prototype programme.” 

Lindsay Watson, Fablink chief technical officer, said: “Fablink prides itself in offering a depth of engineering and technical capability alongside strong competencies in design, tooling & prototyping. It is therefore a pleasure to be working with HVS on this landmark build project where we can share engineering excellence.” 

Satwik Mehta, HSSMI engineering director, said: “We have a shared commitment to delivering sustainable transportation solutions, and a joint passion for innovation. So, we are incredibly pleased to work with HVS to optimise their manufacturing processes and assist in the production of these prototypes in a high-quality and efficient way.” 

HVS has completed the initial build of the first of the prototype rigs at the Silverstone site, which will shortly be despatched to UTAC, Leyland for the initial rig testing.The build of several other APs is now underway.

HVS prototype build

HVS prototype build

Each unit will be used to test specific attributes of the truck design, from strength and durability to the range and efficiency of the vehicle ahead of series production which is due to start mid-decade.