British Government Announces £20 Million Fund for e-Mobility Innovation Competition

The fund is being put up by the British Department of Transport; recent winners have included a fuel-cell ambulance prototype and pop-up charger initiative

The British government has created a £20 million fund which will be used to incentivize a research and development competition in the field of e-mobility. The competition is being organised by the British Department for Transport and according to its website, it will focus on “some of the most promising electric vehicle technology innovations”. This includes innovations in a wide range of electric transport technology such as zero-emission emergency vehicles, charging technology, EV battery recycling.

The fund is largely being borne by the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles, which is a joint initiative of the British Department for Transport and the Department for Business, Energy, Industrial Strategy. The Office is providing £18 million. The remaining is being put up by the British government via the Niche Vehicle Network. According to its website, the Niche Vehicle Network is “an independent association of more than 900 niche vehicle manufacturers and engineering companies, promoting research into low-carbon technology.” The British government’s pledge to invest £2 million through the Niche Vehicle Network is part of its commitment to support innovation from small businesses and organisations.

The Secretary of the British Department for Transport, Grant Shapps, said: “The funding announced today will help harness some of the brightest talent in the UK tech industry, encouraging businesses to become global leaders in EV innovation, creating jobs and accelerating us towards our net-zero ambitions.” In the past, funding has been awarded to a prototype of a fuel-cell ambulance and a pop-up EV charger.

Just last week, the British government announced a major budgetary allocation to an array of renewable energy fields in the form of innovation competitions. A combined investment of £92 million has been secured to award cutting-edge innovations in energy storage, offshore wind and sustainable biomass production. These funding initiatives are in line with Britain’s ambitious goal of ending the manufacture and sale of all cars powered by fossil fuels by 2035. The impact of this move on the e-mobility and renewable energy sector will be immense: the government has projected the creation of almost 6,000 skilled jobs over the next decade.