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JCB hydrogen engine wins top award

Lord Bamford

Hat-trick for JCB as company scoops Royal Automobile Club’s Dewar Trophy for third time 

JCB’s super-efficient hydrogen engine has won one of the oldest and most prestigious awards honouring technical achievement in British automotive engineering.

At a ceremony in London, JCB chairman Lord Bamford was presented with the Royal Automobile Club’s Dewar Trophy for the company’s development of a hydrogen fuel motor. It is the third time that JCB’s innovations have been honoured with the Dewar Trophy.

John Wood MBE, chairman of the Dewar Technical Committee, said: ‘JCB have been pioneers in terms of powertrain development since they started building their own engines in 2004. That ethos has continued with their latest hydrogen-fuelled engines, which are an inspiring combination of current expertise and next-generation technology.’

Anthony Bamford said: ‘We’re extremely proud that the Royal Automobile Club has chosen to present JCB with the Dewar Trophy for the third time. Our new hydrogen-fuelled engines can be put into production relatively quickly and it’s an important and pioneering step towards a zero-carbon future, and testament to the amazing abilities of our British engineers.’

JCB’s purpose-engineered zero-CO2 hydrogen fuel motor was designed after a challenge to the company’s engineers from Lord Bamford. The newly designed motor harnesses JCB’s existing expertise and supply chain infrastructure, and the company is investing £100 million in the project and has two prototype hydrogen-fuelled machines on test: a backhoe loader and a Loadall telescopic handler.

The Dewar Trophy was presented to the RAC in 1904 by Sir Thomas Dewar MP, and since 1957 has been presented in recognition of ‘an outstanding British technical achievement in the automotive field during the preceding year’. In 2019 JCB were recognized for the launch of the 19C-1E electric mini-excavator, and in 2007 they won the Dewar Trophy after the JCB Dieselmax team set a diesel-powered land speed record of 350.092 miles/h on the Bonneville Salt Flats, in the US.

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