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Navistar partners with General Motors, OneH2 to bring long-haul hydrogen truck to market

Jason Morgan is the editor of Fleet Equipment. He has more than 15 years of B2B journalism experience covering the likes of trucking and construction equipment, real estate, movies and craft beer industries.

Navistar-GM-JB-Hunt-OneH2-Hydrogen-Long-haul-truck

In collaboration with General Motors and OneH2, Navistar Inc. introduced a complete solution for customer implementation of a zero-emission long-haul system, which will be initially piloted by J.B. Hunt Transport Inc.

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“Hydrogen fuel cells offer great promise for heavy-duty trucks in applications requiring a higher density of energy, fast refueling and additional range,” said Persio Lisboa, Navistar president and chief executive officer. “We are excited to provide customers with added flexibility through a new hydrogen truck ecosystem that combines our vehicles with the hydrogen fuel cell technology of General Motors and the modular, mobile and scalable hydrogen production and fueling capabilities of OneH2. And we are very pleased that our valued customer J.B. Hunt has committed to utilize the solution on dedicated routes and to share key learnings.”

Navistar plans to make its first production model International RH Series fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) commercially available in model year 2024. Test vehicles are expected to begin the pilot phase under the new, complete solution at the end of 2022. The integrated solution will be competitive with other powertrain offerings with a target range of 500+ miles and a hydrogen fueling time of less than 15 minutes.

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The International RH Series FCEV will get its energy from two GM Hydrotec fuel cell power cubes. Each Hydrotec power cube contains 300-plus hydrogen fuel cells along with thermal and power management systems. They are compact and easy to package into many different applications, the company says.

GM-Hydrotec-power-cube
GM Hydrotec fuel cell power cube.

The combined propulsion system within the International RH Series FCEV will feature better power density for short-range travel, better short-burst kW output and a per-mile cost expected to be comparable to diesel in certain market segments.

Under its partnership agreement with Navistar, OneH2 will supply its hydrogen fueling solution, which includes hydrogen production, storage, delivery and safety. In addition, Navistar is taking a minority stake in OneH2. Through its affiliates, OneH2 plans to kickstart substantial hydrogen heavy truck refueling infrastructure by incorporating more than 2,000 International RH Series FCEVs into existing truck fleets in the near term.

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“We’re excited about the opportunity to partner with Navistar,” said Paul Dawson, OneH2 president and chief executive officer. “We believe strongly that hydrogen fuel is the future of zero-emission renewable energy in the heavy truck market. Under this agreement, we will be able to offer fleets a zero-emission truck with total cost of operation lower than diesel in key segments of the industry.”

These newly announced collaborations with General Motors and OneH2 represent important milestones in Navistar’s phased development of hydrogen fuel cell solutions. These technologies leverage Navistar’s battery electric vehicle platforms and provide the customer with a single-source, fully integrated zero-emission solution that includes vehicles, fueling and service.

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“The combination of hydrogen fuel cell technology and refueling capability will enable us to reduce emissions along with energy consumption, fulfilling our environmental sustainability commitment to our customers and the communities we serve,” said John Roberts, J.B. Hunt president and chief executive officer. “We are excited for the potential of this innovative business model and look forward to sharing our learnings from this pilot program with Navistar and its involved technical and infrastructure partners.”

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