Toyota’s Project Portal hydrogen fuel cell-powered big rig will be plying the streets of Southern California now that it’s finished its current stint as a drayage hauler for the Port of Los Angeles in testing and development.
This proof of concept truck is based on a Kenworth T600 model, in cooperation with Paccar (which owns KW), outfitted with Toyota’s HFCV powertrain designed to replace the diesel-powered engine in a standard class 8 truck. The truck’s hydrogen stacks, derived by combining two stacks from Mirai fuel cell cars, deliver power to the 12 kWh battery pack that’s on-board. Those batteries, in turn, power motors that deliver over 670 horsepower and 1,325 pound-feet of torque. For reference, most big rigs working the docks have an output of around 475-600 horses and 1,000 lb-ft of torque.
Toyota says that the Project Portal truck can range about 200 miles per H2 fill under normal usage. We know it would be scalable to more or less mileage as needed.
The good news is that hydrogen fueling stations are already in place at both the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, where the truck will be operating. Other fuel cell trucks have been or are currently in operation there under California’s port testing scheme in cooperation with the California Air Resources Board and the California Energy Commission. Some may remember the now-defunct Vision Tyrano, which failed due to funding issues. Other companies such as Loop Energy and US Hybrid are currently in operation with test trucks of their own at these ports.
California also has several hydrogen-powered buses in testing on public routes as well as fuel cell vehicles operating with UPS and other commercial carriers.