It will still be roughly a year before the first hybrid-electric truck from Hyliion is produced. Nevertheless, a hydrogen-powered fuel cell that was created with Hyzon Motors will power the third generation of the Hypertruck ERX.
By the end of the year, the two businesses hope to combine a Hyliion electric drivetrain system with a Hyzon fuel cell. According to Thomas Healy, founder, and CEO of Hyliion, production would start as soon as there was enough hydrogen fueling infrastructure.
On a conference call with analysts, Healy predicted that the initial uptake of hydrogen vehicles would likely take place in a localized area around truck-supporting fueling stations. “We anticipate to see usage expand and applications transition from regional to long haul as additional stations are built out and the cost of hydrogen decreases,” the statement continued.
In its product roadmap, Hyliion states that its second product will be a fuel-agnostic generator using technology it acquired from General Electric. On display at the Advanced Clean Transportation Expo in Anaheim, California, in May, will be a model of the Karno generator installed in a Hypertruck.
Production of the Hypertruck is scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter
Durability testing for the first Hyliion product, a natural gas-electric-powered Hypertruck ERX, is being done in the winter. The sleeper cab built on the Peterbilt 579 has 210 orders from Hyliion. They can run exclusively on electricity for up to 75 miles before converting to conventional natural gas or renewable natural gas (RNG) for up to 1,000 miles.
For Q4, a gradual production increase is anticipated. All orders with deposit guarantees are expected to be delivered by the end of Q1 2024. There are fewer supply chain interruptions now than there were two years ago, which affected several businesses. According to Healy, many ERX components still take six months or longer to arrive.
In contrast to battery-electric plug-ins, which have a maximum driving range of 200 to 300 miles before needing a recharge that can take anywhere between 90 minutes and several hours, hybrid vehicles can travel much farther. However, due to rules requiring a sharp reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, the trucking industry’s transformation is primarily focused on switching from diesel fuel to pure electric operation.
The Hypertruck ERX, which runs on RNG and electricity, could provide a negative net carbon profile more effectively than a battery-electric truck.
Hyliion announced a higher 2022 fourth-quarter and annual loss. Hyliion’s net loss for the entire year 2022 was $124.6 million. That didn’t include $28.8 million in one-time research and development costs connected to the Q3 purchase of the Karno generator. 2021 saw a $96 million loss for Hyliion.
The business claimed that its trucks are eligible for a $40,000 Inflation Reduction Act incentive for each one and for a 100% credit under a future California law that is anticipated to mandate fleets to buy zero-emission cars.
This year, it anticipates receiving approvals from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the California Air Resources Board, and the Environmental Protection Agency. For production to begin in the fourth quarter, those are essential.
Financially, Hyliion is in a better position than Hyzon
Hyliion’s financial situation has improved. Cash and equivalents decreased from $455 million at the end of Q3 to $422 million at the end of 2022. It has enough cash to launch the ERX, advance the Karno technology, and establish the Hyzon partnership.
The market value of Hyliion is approximately $508 million. On Wednesday, the price of its shares remained at $2.83. Hyliion gained 50 personnel in contrast to a recent wave of tech layoffs last year.
Operating costs are anticipated to be between $130 million and $140 million this year. According to CFO John Panzer, Hyliion does not plan to raise additional funds. It stands out among startups in transportation technology because of this. To survive, many are merging. Some businesses are just barely hanging on to survive.
Having been split out from Singapore’s Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology in 2021, Hyzon is a financially precarious firm that is preoccupied with law enforcement inquiries. The Nasdaq, where Hyzon’s shares are currently trading at just over $1, has granted the company an additional deadline to return to regulatory compliance or risk being delisted. Its market value is approximately $322 million.