Coventry University has joined forces with German engineering services giant FEV to open a new a £50m low carbon vehicle technology facility.
The Centre for Advanced Low-Carbon Propulsion Systems (C-ALPS) has been set up to harness cutting-edge academic and commercial expertise to support the development of the next generation of electric, hybrid and combustion engines.
The facility will house some of the most advanced internal combustion and electrification test bed facilities currently available in the UK, creating a dedicated resource for testing current and future powertrain solutions quickly and efficiently.
The capabilities will be available to OEMs, SMEs in the supply chain and technology partners keen to accelerate the creation of new propulsion systems for use across automotive, aerospace, marine and rail sectors.
36 new jobs will be created initially, with a number of apprentices and graduates from Coventry University already appointed.
“We have a real opportunity for the country to lead the rest of the world when it comes to developing low carbon propulsion systems and C-ALPS has a major role to play in making this happen,” explained Professor Richard Dashwood, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Coventry University.
FEV moved into the new facility – which will serve as its UK Test Centre – in January.
Commenting on his firm’s investment in the UK at a time of such uncertainty Professor Stefan Pischinger, President and CEO of FEV Group, said: “We made the decision to collaborate after the Brexit vote was taken and, despite all of the uncertainty, we see no reason to change our approach and believe the UK is amongst the most advanced in the world when it comes to developing the next generation of powertrain solutions.”
He added that the new centre will not just be concentrating on electric vehicle technology. “It’s important to understand that whilst electrification of vehicles is critical, it is not going to happen overnight and there is a journey we must go on first. There is still a role to play for the combustion engine and how we integrate hybrid technologies more effectively – alongside and not instead of new developments in electric powertrains.”