Jaguar Land Rover wants to achieve zero tailpipe emissions by 2036, and one of the steps taken to make this a reality is to develop a hydrogen fuel cell Defender. The automaker says it is currently working on a prototype and plans to start testing the emission-free version of its iconic SUV in late 2021 in the UK.
Hydrogen fuel cells can power a vehicle by combining hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity, with only water as the emission. Jaguar explains that fuel cells allow quick refueling and have a high energy density, making them ideal for larger vehicles with longer range. In addition, vehicles powered by fuel cells perform well in cold environments because they exhibit minimal loss of range at low temperatures.
The company has dubbed the work it does to develop the clean energy vehicle as “Project Zeus”. Partly funded by the UK-backed Advanced Propulsion Center, the initiative will give Jaguar engineers the information they need to be able to optimize a hydrogen powertrain. The hope is to develop fuel cell vehicles that can deliver the same performance and capabilities – in terms of range, off-road capability and even towing – as their conventional counterparts.
In addition to aiming for zero tailpipe emissions by 2036, Jaguar also hopes to achieve zero net carbon emissions in its supply chain, products and operations by 2039. Both goals are part of its strategy “Reimagine Announced in February when the automaker revealed it won’t build all-electric cars until 2025.
Ralph Clague, head of hydrogen and fuel cells for Jaguar Land Rover, said in a statement:
“We know that hydrogen has a role to play in the future powertrain mix across the transportation industry, and alongside battery electric vehicles, it offers another zero tailpipe solution. for the specific capabilities and requirements of Jaguar Land Rover’s world-class vehicle lineup. The work done alongside our Zeus Project partners will help us on our journey to become a net zero carbon company by 2039, as we prepare for the next generation of zero tailpipe vehicles. “
Jaguar has not revealed a timeline for the fuel cell Defender, except that it will begin to undergo a battery of tests this year to verify key attributes, including off-road capability and fuel mileage.
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