SoCalGas to Test Drive Ford’s Prototype F-550 Super Duty Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Truck

SoCalGas to Test Drive Ford’s Prototype F-550 Super Duty Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Truck

The demonstration project could reduce commercial fleet emissions 

SoCalGas and Ford Motor Company are driving towards a clean future! The two companies are working to reduce commercial fleet emissions by developing and testing a F-550 Super Duty Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Truck. The project represents a unique opportunity to decarbonize large fleets like utilities that require long ranges, fast refueling, onboard power needs, and 24/7 emergency response. 

This demonstration is part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) SuperTruck 3 program, which aims to significantly reduce emissions in medium and heavy-duty trucks.

“The companies that drive our economy and especially our transportation sector must collaborate on developing innovative technologies as we make the transition to a cleaner tomorrow,” said State Senator Josh Newman. “This groundbreaking project will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, but it also offers promise toward tackling America’s current energy challenges.”

Ford will provide SoCalGas with a F-550 Super Duty Truck to evaluate the prototype truck’s performance under real-world conditions. We were chosen to evaluate how the truck can meet the rigorous demands of utility work and because of our climate and geographical location. The demonstration project will also include a temporary hydrogen refueling station at our Bakersfield facility. The truck is expected to deploy in 2025. 

“Ford’s strategy to reduce carbon emissions across the globe includes investigating multiple technologies that will help us achieve these goals across a broad spectrum of applications,” said Jim Buczkowski, executive director, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering. “For our wide spectrum of Ford Pro customers, there are application gaps that battery electric vehicles just can’t fulfill yet, so we’re looking at hydrogen fuel cells to power larger, heavier commercial vehicles while still delivering zero tailpipe emissions.” 

SoCalGas’ participation is another step towards our ASPIRE 2045 sustainability goals by working to replace 50% of our over-the-road fleet with clean fuel vehicles by 2025 and operate a 100% zero-emission fleet by 2035.

“We are honored to work with Ford on their strategy to help reduce emissions,” said Neil Navin, vice president of clean energy innovations at SoCalGas. “This project is a critical step toward finding real-world solutions to decarbonize heavy duty transportation such as our utility fleet with Ford’s H2 Fuel Cell Electric F-550.”

SoCalGas’ fleet already includes 50 hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (HFCEVs), making the company among the first utilities in the nation to start transitioning to hydrogen-powered vehicles. More recently, SoCalGas announced plans to install 1,500 electric vehicle chargers at 67 company facilities by end of 2024. Currently, a third of our over-the-road fleet operates on clean fuels.

And earlier this year, we won the “Leading Private Fleet” Award at the 2022 ACT Expo, North America's largest advanced transportation and clean fleet event. The award recognizes leadership that goes above and beyond what is required to achieve sustainability in a company's fleet operations.