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What does the APC mean by the term Propulsion Nation?

The UK has a wealth of production facilities and suppliers dispersed across the UK providing employment in every region. There are 13 R&D centres, six design centres and more than 140 manufacturers of buses, cars, commercial vehicles, engines and motorcycles.

The development and production of propulsion systems used in UK production and for export overseas is not concentrated in a single town or region. Expertise is spread across the UK, and the APC has been created to facilitate opportunities wherever they are located to create a national resource, rather than concentrated in a ‘motor valley’ or ‘powertrain roundabout’ instead to create the ‘Propulsion Nation’.

The aim is to secure and grow over 30,000 UK jobs currently engaged in research, development and production of propulsion systems for all modes of transportation.

Why is the APC needed?

Industry must rise to the challenge of producing lower carbon transportation which will require the development of new, innovative technologies to accelerate the industrialisation of low carbon propulsion systems for automotive applications.

With vehicle manufacturers and their major suppliers making decisions now on where to base development programmes for future products, the next decade represents a critical period of transition for the industry as current engines reach their performance limits and new propulsion solutions become increasingly important. The next generation of propulsion systems has yet to establish a supply chain, not just in the UK, but internationally.

The investment by industry and government into the APC puts Britain ahead in the global race for the development of new propulsion technologies. The APC has the potential to secure up to 30,000 jobs currently linked to engine and broader vehicle production, with the potential to increase as global demand increases.

How do companies work with the APC?

Project funding applications will be invited from consortia which are industry-led and collaborative, including at least one vehicle manufacturer, an SME and at least one supply chain partner.

SMEs will benefit, for example, through access to funding, access to customers and access to industrialisation and commercialisation know-how. They may ultimately have the opportunity of developing and growing their production capabilities.

Is the APC part of government?

The APC is private limited company. It is an industry-led innovation centre and not a government or public body. However both government and industry are both convinced of the benefits of the APC, and are willing to make significant investments over a ten year period. Industry and government are both represented on the Board of the APC.

How is the APC funded?

The scope of the APC has been worked up in partnership with industry, and the £500 million government investment is matched by £500 million in contributions from industry, which backs both the concept and the scale of the APC. It is expected that the majority of the £1bn funding (at least 90%) will be spent on R&D projects to support the industrialisation of the low carbon supply chain.