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autonomous hydrogen HGV
The Hub2Hub consortium has been awarded £6.6 million by the UK government to develop the world’s first autonomous zero-emission heavy goods vehicle (HGV). This will be the first vehicle of its kind and will provide new employment opportunities and increased efficiency, safety, and cost savings for the transportation and logistics sector. The consortium, which includes Fusion Processing, ASDA, and HVS, was selected by the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) as one of seven recipients of joint industry and government funding.

The First Prototype

The first hydrogen-electric HGV prototype will be fitted with a driver’s cab and tested on the road in autonomous operation using Fusion Processing’s CAVstar automated drive system. This system will be controlled by a human safety driver. The second prototype will have the driver’s cab removed and replaced with an aerodynamic fairing. This vehicle will be evaluated on test tracks, with the CAVstar system allowing for remote operation by a human driver.

The Potential of Autonomous HGV Technology

The innovative HGV will not only decarbonize one of the biggest polluting vehicle sectors but will also expedite the development of hub-to-hub automated driving technology. The advanced CAVstar system will integrate vision systems, AI, and route planning to deliver a fully autonomous vehicle that can be operated in autonomous mode on hub-to-hub routes. Fleet operators will benefit from optimized vehicle utilization and improved operational efficiencies, leading to a more environmentally friendly and efficient logistics system.

Impact on the UK Economy

Forecasts predict that by 2035, 40% of new UK car sales will have self-driving capabilities, with a total market value for connected and automated mobility worth £41.7 billion to the UK. This could create nearly 40,000 skilled jobs in connected and automated vehicle technology. The Hub2Hub project will contribute to the growth of the UK economy and help the country stay ahead of global competition.


The project, led by HVS, is a perfect showcase of the advanced capabilities of the CAVstar system and demonstrates the potential of autonomous vehicles in the transportation and logistics sector. ASDA’s senior fleet manager, Sean Clifton, said that reducing fleet emissions is a major part of the company’s plan to move toward net zero and that they are eager to look at innovative new technologies such as autonomous HGV tractor units. The UK Business Secretary, Grant Shapps, stated that in a few years’ time, self-driving vehicles could add billions to the UK economy and create thousands of jobs. The Hub2Hub project is a major opportunity to drive forward this growth.

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