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Norton Motorcycles announce plan to build electric motorcycles in the UK. Image courtesy of Norton Motorcycles.

Clean Transport

Electric Motorbikes & Off-Road Trucks to Unlock Growth & Jobs Across the UK

£43.7 million joint industry and government funding to support the development of the latest green auto tech, including electric motorbikes and off-road vehicles.

Courtesy of GOV.UK

Electric motorcycles and an all-terrain, 4×4 electric delivery truck designed for emerging markets are among the projects benefiting from more than £43 million of government and industry funding to help develop the latest green automotive technology, while seizing on the economic opportunities of the global transition to cleaner transport.

The 2 projects have been awarded funding through the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) Collaborative Research and Development competition, which supports the development of innovative low carbon automotive technology and will help propel the UK in the global race to secure electric vehicle supply chains. The projects are:

  • Project Zero Emission Norton, Solihull, West Midlands — £17.2 million (£8.5m funding through the APC) to develop an electric motorbike that delivers a high level of race performance and touring range, not only enhancing workforce capabilities and securing local jobs, but helping to strengthen the UK’s competitive supply chain
  • OX Delivers CLEAN (Clean Logistics for Emerging African Nations), Leamington Spa, Warwickshire — £17.1 million (£8.5m funding through the APC) to develop an all-terrain electric delivery truck designed for emerging markets and manufactured in the UK that can withstand tough off-road conditions by using long-life, lower cost batteries

The projects are set to secure more than 550 jobs and save 27.6 million tonnes of CO2 — the equivalent of removing the lifetime emissions of 1.1 million cars from the road.

Minister for Investment Lord Grimstone said:

“This funding, delivered through the government-backed Advanced Propulsion Centre, will support UK businesses at the cutting edge of the automotive industry to trial the very latest tech, from the development of electric motorbikes to off-road trucks.

“Supporting these strategically important technologies lays the path for our electric vehicle sector to compete on a global scale, driving jobs and growth nationwide whilst also creating cleaner, more sustainable modes of transport.”

In addition, 19 early-stage proposals that could bolster the UK electric vehicle supply chain have also been awarded funding to research, prove or enhance the case for their scale up, with the potential to create further jobs throughout the country.

The feasibility studies will be backed with £9.4 million in matched government-industry money through the Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF). Areas to be investigated include the development of EV battery components and the viability of using UK-sourced critical minerals.

Studies awarded funding today include:

  • Livista Energy Limited, London — Investigating building Europe’s first standalone lithium refining facility capable of producing battery grade lithium.
  • Nyobolt Ltd, Cambridge — Assessing scale up of the manufacture of high-power battery technology that enables ultra-fast charging without sacrificing the battery’s lifetime or safety.
  • LTS Transport Solutions, Queenborough — Exploring the potential of opening a brand-new electric vehicle battery recycling plant in the UK by 2024.

The ATF was created to accelerate the development of an electric vehicle supply chain, enabling UK-based manufacturers to scale up production in strategically important technologies. The ATF is delivered by the APC to support capital and late-stage R&D investments.

Ian Constance Chief Executive at the APC says:

“The projects receiving today’s investment highlight the breadth of technologies needed to help the UK accelerate to net zero emissions. They’re reimagining not just vehicles, but transport in general.”

This is the nineteenth round of funding coordinated by the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) which supports the development of low carbon emission technologies for cars, buses, heavy goods vehicles, and vans. These projects will help further the UK’s ongoing efforts to develop a sustainable supply chain for manufacturing electric vehicles by 2026.

ATF funding awards for 6-month projects

It also includes 19 ATF funding awards for 6-month projects that will look to research, prove or enhance the business case for scaling up automotive manufacturing or identify where the UK may have a gap to guide a commercial investment strategy.

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