An enhanced prototype of Daimler Trucks’ hydrogen-based fuel-cell GenH2 Truck has received approval from German authorities for use on public roads.
In April, the truck manufacturer began conducting tests of the GenH2 Truck on its test tracks, after the truck’s unveiling the previous year. During this testing, the truck successfully accumulated several thousand kilometers of running. Daimler aims for the vehicle to achieve ranges of up to 1,000km and more without any stops for refueling in its series version.
Now, testing is expanding to public roads, including the B462 road near Rastatt, Germany. There, as part of the wider eWayBW project, freight routes will be electrified to test catenary (which use overhead power cables), battery electric and fuel cell trucks in operation.
The first series-produced GenH2 Truck are expected to be handed over to customers in 2027. Daimler Trucks says it intends to offer only new vehicles that are carbon-neutral in driving operation (‘tank-to-wheel’) in Europe, Japan and North America by 2039. To achieve this goal, it is pursuing a dual-track strategy with the use of both battery-powered and hydrogen propulsion systems. This combination of technologies, states Daimler, will allow it to offer customers the best vehicle options for their specific use cases: the lighter the load and the shorter the distance, the more likely it is that batteries will be used. The heavier the load and the longer the distance, the more likely it is that fuel cells will be system of choice.