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University of Warwick to host central APC hub

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) has selected the UK’s University of Warwick as the site for its hub location, supporting the 10-year, US$1.69bn industry and government commitment to the development of low-carbon propulsion systems.

The central hub, together with a national spoke structure, will provide the UK automotive industry with resources and facilities to develop advanced propulsion systems and supply chains. In doing so, the aim of the APC (in partnership with the industry) is to secure and grow over 30,000 UK jobs currently engaged in the research, development and production of vehicle powertrains, as the industry transitions to a low-carbon future for all modes of transportation.

An open and rigorous process was used to select the hub location, overseen by an independent, industry-led assessment panel. The final decision was based on various requirements for a suitable rapid start-up facility, which included: ease of access with good communication networks; access to capable skills; independence and flexibility; scope for physical expansion as the APC gains momentum; and provision for world class showcasing of UK capability in advanced technologies.

The APC helps forge partnerships between those who have good ideas and those who can bring them to market. The services provided by the APC will enable projects that provide profitable growth and sustainable opportunities for the partners involved and contribute to the UK’s economic prosperity.

‘The Advanced Propulsion Centre will support the UK automotive industry to become a global leader in the research, development and production of advanced propulsion systems,” says APC chief executive Tony Pixton. “Through our hub and spoke network we will enable collaboration between SMEs, suppliers and vehicle manufacturers to create new powertrain solutions that build UK capability.

“The competition to identify the location for the APC hub has re-enforced the fact that the UK is strategically placed to be a worldwide centre for low-carbon propulsion systems, R&D and production. The University of Warwick will become the location of the hub for the APC, at the center of a Propulsion Nation, offering world-class facilities and expertise as part of the 10-year program of activity.

“The APC has already committed more than US$219m of new investment into the UK economy since it opened for business earlier this year. By the end of the year an additional round of project funding will allocate up to a further US$126m as part of the rapid action being undertaken by the APC team.”

The Advanced Propulsion Centre was created from the collaboration between industry and government through the Automotive Council. The APC is a central pillar of the Industrial Strategy published by the Council in 2013. The Automotive Council is co-chaired by the motor industry and government.

‘I am pleased to note that the Advanced Propulsion System has selected its hub location, which along with the regional spokes, will be the key enablers for the rapid development of vehicle propulsion technology in the UK,” says Richard Parry-Jones, CBE, co-chair of the Automotive Council. “Today’s announcement represents another important step in the implementation of the Automotive Council’s industrial strategy to position Britain as an undisputed leader in developing lower carbon technologies for future vehicles.”

Further announcements about spoke locations, funding competitions and the development of the APC team will be made in the coming months.

30 July 2014


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