Australian hydrogen vehicle start-up H2X has partnered with Austrian motorcycle and sports car manufacturer KTM to develop lightweight body and chassis elements for H2X’s hydrogen fuel cell van. The ‘Origami’ modular chassis allows the H2X ‘Darling’ to have multiple body options.
We first heard from H2X in October 2022, when it tried to homologate its Warrego hydrogen pickup (based on the Ford Ranger) for European roads. Back then, the company also spoke about its Darling, a Ford Transit-sized hydrogen fuel cell van with several body sizes and variants. Now, the company has a partner in hand to make it possible.
What does KTM do?
How much influence KTM has on the construction of the Darling van is not clear. However, H2X mentions the goal is “to develop innovative solutions for strong, lightweight vehicle bodies”, with the Origami chassis also being part of this collaboration.
The Origami chassis means several body and chassis types will be available for customers, just like other mid-sized vans like the Ford Transit and Iveco Daily. The Darling van will be available in three sizes (4,67 m, 4,90 m, or 5,32 m), as a refrigerated van, or as a chassis-platform variant.
When is the H2X Darling coming?
H2X promises a “payload” of up to 3,5 tons (although it seems more like the gross vehicle weight rather than the payload), a towable weight of 1 000 to 2 550 kg, and a range of over 400 km with quick refueling, which is the main advantage of hydrogen fuel cells over battery-electric solutions.
What remains unknown, however, is a concrete launch date for the Darling van. Back in 2022, H2X spoke of a 2025 launch in Europe, while a more recent press release speaks of a production start “as soon as 2026”, while the company still seeks funding to prepare for the launch of mass production. A heavy hydrogen truck and bus are also “coming soon”.