Liverpool-based sports car manufacturer BAC has partnered with engineering outfit Viritech to develop a hydrogen fuel cell (FCEV) version of its Mono sports car.
Viritech, which is developing a 1100bhp FCEV supercar at the MIRA technology park, has been awarded funding via the Niche Vehicle Network Feasibility Study Grant and will use it to investigate the feasibility of powering low-volume cars with hydrogen.
BAC is supporting the project by providing the Mono as a basis for the programme. The final product, although no longer powered by a 330bhp naturally aspirated 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine, will continue "to be led by BAC’s principles of uncompromising performance and driver experience".
BAC says its partnership with Viritech is in line with a push to reduce its emissions output by 2030. The company went 'climate positive' in 2019 thanks to its carbon offsetting programme and has previously expressed a keen interest in the use of synthetic fuels as well as efficiency-boosting lightweight construction materials, including graphene and niobium.
Alternative powertrain solutions such as Viritech's hydrogen fuel cell hardware will help BAC to "preserve the delicate balance that weight plays in a vehicle’s driving dynamics". Keeping the Mono FCEV's weight down will be a priority of the project.
Neill Briggs, BAC's co-founder and product boss, said: "We are delighted to be working with Viritech and their ground-breaking approach to FCEV. Technology has always been at the forefront of our development and we remain committed to exploring new automotive innovations within all that we do.
"Alternative fuels, along with lightweight construction methods, reduce vehicle emissions considerably without compromising driver engagement, something we are committed to preserving at BAC.”