Australian hydrogen fuel cell electric vehcile start-up H2X Global says it will launch its high priced Warrego Ute on the Gold Coast in November, ahead of deliveries slated for April 2022.
The Warrego ute will features a 200kW motor and a 66KW and optional 90KW fuel cell system delivering between 60KW and 100KW of output from its energy storage systems between the battery and supercapacitor units.
Three Warrego models will be available, with the base model Warrego 66 starting at a price of $189,000 for the only model with either 2WD or AWD. The Warrego 90 and 90 XR will arrive in late-2022 and start from $235,000 and $250,000 respectively.
The Warrego 66 will boasts a top speed of 110km/h, while both the Warrego 90 and 90 XR push their top speeds to 150km/h. All three models offer impressive torque of 350Nm and carry capacity of 1,000-kilograms and additional towing capacity of 2,500-kilograms.
All of this hydrogen-fuelled power gives the Warrego an impressive driving range starting at 500-kilometres – with the 90 XR offering a driving range of 750-kilometres – and refuelling times of between 3 to 5 minutes.
Of course, to benefit from these refuelling times, the owner will need to guarantee access to a hydrogen refuelling station, and these are not yet commonplace across the country, with only four stations likely to be in operation by then, and all with limited capacity of how many vehicles they can charge.
As for whether H2X will be involved in helping to build a more extensive hydrogen refuelling network, that is unclear.
In the company’s press release touting the launch of the Warrego Ute, H2X Global proclaimed that they already had in place a wide network of support partners in Australia and developing in key locations around the world capable of providing accelerated distribution, servicing, and aftersales support.
“H2X works with hydrogen infrastructure providers and forward-thinking industries to establish ecosystems which are cost effective from the start, where we look to offer multiple applications of vehicles to make it easy to reach a critical mass in one location,” said H2X CEO Brendan Norman.
“This supports not only the refuelling exercise, but also allows us to establish high-quality after sales operations in all locations that our customers will be using hydrogen. Hydrogen ecosystems deliver opportunity for a wide range of products to be delivered quickly – our products focus on this market.”
While hydrogen refuelling is a problem, and potentially emissions intensive if not produced with renewable energy, hydrogen FCEVs may find a major niche in the automotive sector – in particular in commercial and heavy-duty applications.
H2X Global says FCEV models can, in some areas, outperform battery electric vehicles (BEVs) – such as the speed of refuelling times and what it says is “limited expected life” for EV batteries, and “issues with the disposal of lithium batteries.
Joshua S. Hill is a Melbourne-based journalist who has been writing about climate change, clean technology, and electric vehicles for over 15 years. He has been reporting on electric vehicles and clean technologies for Renew Economy and The Driven since 2012. His preferred mode of transport is his feet.