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ETEC Hydrogen ICE Pickup Truck Conversion

A conventional Silverado 1500HD

ETEC (electric transportation engineering corporation) is developing a set of hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engine (HICE) Chevy Silverado 1500HD crew cab pickup trucks.

ETEC is primarily an infrastructure company for electric vehicles, providing design, engineering, construction, operation, maintenance, technical support and field services. It tackled HICE partly as an infrastructure opportunity.

Working in conjunction with Roush Industries, a provider of vehicle engineering and development services, ETEC is using the original GM 6.0-liter V8 outfitted with a Lysholm twin-screw supercharger/intercooler system optimized to provide acceptable power (180 hp) and torque (352 Nm) for pickup truck applications.

The conventional 1500HD with the 6.0-liter gasoline engine delivers 300 hp (224 Nm) with 488 Nm of torque.

ETEC uses a lean-burn strategy (lambda 2.0) to minimize NOx. The company estimates that engine out NOx will meet EPA Tier II Bin 7 specifications. It uses no catalysts for NOx reduction. One HICE Silverado is going to the DOE for more detailed emissions testing as part of the agency’s Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity, HICEV America program.

About 10.5 kg of hydrogen is stored onboard at a pressure of 350 bar (5,000 psi) in three 150-liter tanks secured in the truck’s cargo bed, providing a vehicle driving range in excess of 250 km (155 miles).

Nine conversion vehicles are currently in production. One goes to the DOE, as noted above. Powertech Labs, which provided the storage systems, purchased the remaining eight as part of the Industrial Waste Hydrogen Utilization Project in British Columbia (earlier post). Local businesses will lease the HICE trucks from Powertech for a two-year period.

The company highlighted its work in a poster session at the Clean Heavy Duty Vehicles conference in San Diego. (Earlier post.)



Those are horrible stats. 180hp Is barely going to move that heavy beast. And I'm sure it weights more now than it did w/ gasoline in it.

This looks like more evidence to me that ICE hydrogen is a flop idea.


Mark A

I agree with Ash. 150 liters equals about 40 gallons. With a range of 155 miles that equals out to just under 4 miles per gallon. Of course the real issue here is cost. If hydrogen costs 0.42 cents per gallon it would equal $2.25 gasoline. Anyone have any figures for the cost of hydrogen versus gasoline?

With Roush's involvement, will we see this technology apply to Nascar soon?

tom deplume

Way back in the 1960s 180 hp was considered more than enough power for a large pickup.


180 hp is enough, actually its up to torque to move a heavy vehicle.

10.5 kg hydrogen = 155 miles
ie. appx 14.8 miles per kg

We should use gasoline equivalent to calculate.

H2 contains apprx 2.6 times the energy per unit mass as gasoline.

10.5 kg H2 = 27.3 kg gasoline

gasoline density = 0.75 g/cc = 0.75 kg/litre

27.3 kg gasoline = 36.4 L

10.5 kg hydrogen = 36.4 L gasoline in terms of energy
(and can run for 250km)
= 14.56 L/100km or about 16 MPG

in american standard, this is ok ok MPG...


but a gasoline 16MPG vehicle can certainly generate more hp and torque then 180hp. Are you sure to go Hydrogen?


For those using the global internet who don't think in the walled garden of the USA

An Imperial gallon is 4.54609 litres.
A USA gallon is 3.785411784 litres


For those using the global internet who don't think in the walled garden of the USA

An Imperial gallon is 4.54609 litres.
A USA gallon is 3.785411784 litres


Torque and gear ratios means more than brute HP output at a maximum RPM under perfect test conditions (which is how Gas engines are tested. As a personal for instance I used a 40hp VW Beetle (1968) to pull my 1/2 ton Chevy Silverado up an embankment that I had gone over on an icy road. The bug pulled the truck out and blew the clutch the next day driving it home up a steep hill in traffic. The reason the bug could do it was gear ratios and weight to hold down the drive wheels.

Kevin Morrow

Final performance specifications are now posted on ETEC's webpage (; Horsepower is 195hp, and torque is 260 lbs-ft. In order to keep NOx under control, horsepower is sacrificed through the lean-burn strategy. If NOx was not a concern or controls were applied, horsepower with the current configuration could top 400hp.

Robert Monk

The point of converting fuel technologies should not be to match gasoline-powered. Gas is really really great for energy density and low-tech safe handling, but it will get more and more expensive and scarce from here on out. Plus it's polluting.

A hydrogen ICE vehicle is helpful because it allows us to keep driving around, even when gasoline is $10/gal. (or totally unavailable except to the airforce), and/or when we wake up and stop pumping greenhouse gas into an already f-'d atmosphere.

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