APC: ARMD3 - Advanced route to market demonstrator for zero emission automotive technology

UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £15m for late stage R&D to accelerate the UK towards a zero emission automotive future.

Opportunity Details


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Your project’s total grant funding request must be between £500,000 and £1.5 million. Your project must be a minimum of 50% match funded. A minimum of 70% of your total project costs must be incurred by commercial organisations.


Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC)
Innovate UK

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Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with the Department of Business and Trade (DBT) through the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), the automotive industry and academia, to invest up to £15 million in the Advanced Route to Market Demonstrator 3 (ARMD3) competition.

These will be to accelerate the industrialisation of technologies, digital optimisation and manufacturing processes, to support the UK’s transition to a zero emissions automotive industry.

The aim of this competition is to develop a product or process demonstrator, to show increased capability, and commercial exploitation opportunity, as a result of the project. The project will utilise future zero emission powertrain technology as a key element in the UKs transition to net zero.

We are looking for business led late-stage R&D projects that will demonstrate advanced propulsion technologies. The output of these projects must be in the form of a demonstrator.

Your proposal must explain how technology development will be significantly accelerated through your project and must clearly describe how these products will be brought to market.

  • Projects can be single applicants or collaborative.

    To lead a project or work alone, your organisation must:

    • be a UK registered business of any size
    • have an active registered business base in the UK
    • be a grant recipient
    • collaborate with other UK registered organisations where applicable

    To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

    • business of any size
    • academic institution
    • charity
    • not for profit
    • public sector organisation
    • research and technology organisation (RTO)

    Non-UK registered businesses and research organisations are only eligible to apply for funding if:

    • they set up an active UK-registered business where the funded project work will be carried out by the start of the project
    • provide evidence of an intention to expand their R&D activity in the UK during and after the project

    A company registration number starting with a FC or BR is not considered as a UK registered business and not eligible to apply for funding.

    There are no limits on the number of applications an organisation can be involved in.

  • Your project must:

    • have a grant funding request of between £500,000 and £1.5 million
    • have a minimum of 50% match funded
    • last between 9 and 12 months
    • carry out all of its project work in the UK
    • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
    • start by 1 October 2024
    • end by 30 September 2025

    We will fund industrial research projects and experimental development projects, as defined in the guidance on categories of research.

  • The aim of this competition is to develop and realise the demonstration of capability that could lead to further business exploitation, as a direct result of this demonstrator. This will utilise future net zero powertrain technology as a key element in the UK transition to zero emissions for the automotive sector.

    Your proposal must work towards delivery of zero emissions on vehicle technologies for on-road or off-road vehicles.

    Vehicle applications in scope must include:

    • on highway including last mile (not e-scooters or e-bikes)
    • off highway including agriculture and mining

    In the case of on-road solutions, we will only support project proposals which aim to achieve zero harmful tailpipe emissions.

    Capability demonstration can be through:

    • a physical vehicle
    • a physical sub-system

    It can also be an equivalent digital demonstrator that can be operated or displayed at Cenex Expo in 2025, as a key element of the dissemination requirements.

    Your project must demonstrate the advancement of on-vehicle technologies in one or more of the following areas:

    • energy storage, batteries and their components and integration systems
    • fuel cell systems and their components and integration systems
    • electric machines and their components and integration systems
    • power electronics and their components and integration systems
    • fossil fuel free internal combustion, at the point of use, for on-road solutions we will only support project proposals which aim to achieve zero harmful tailpipe emissions
    • lightweight materials, manufacturing, design methods and processes
    • on vehicle hydrogen storage and management systems
    • design for circular economy and sustainability, including the disassembly, recovery, and reuse of materials used in the project technologies
    • digitalisation of design for manufacture and recycling, development of zero emissions vehicle innovation, manufacture of vehicle systems and sub-systems, data analytics, redesign, test and validation and verification

    Technology maturity expectations for this competition should be looking at TRL 5-6 and MRL 4-5 by completion, based on published Automotive Technology and Manufacturing Readiness Levels.

    You will be required to provide a close out report and case study at the end of your funded project.

  • You must consider which of the technologies listed below best represent your project.

    If you are using multiple technologies, rank them in order of their significance and impact to your project.

    The one ranked first must be the lead technology:

    • electric machines and power electronics
    • energy storage and energy management
    • lightweight vehicles and powertrain structures
    • fuel cell and associated balance of plant
    • thermal propulsion systems and alternative fuels
    • digitalisation for development of low carbon vehicle innovation, data analytics, redesign, test and validation and verification

    Your lead technology must have a significance and impact ranking of at least 50%. You can also rank up to an additional two supporting technologies that can have a maximum of 25% each.

    Your percentages must add up to 100%.

  • We are not funding projects that are:

    • focussed only on the development of clean fuels
    • not aligned with the UK’s net zero research innovations framework
    • requesting more than 50% grant for total project costs
    • predominantly off vehicle
    • focussed on process or manufacturing
    • focussed on recycling
    • developing either e-Scooters or e-Bikes
  • If you want help to find a project partner, contact Innovate UK Business Connect’s Transport team.

    We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds and are committed to making our application process accessible to everyone. This includes making reasonable adjustments, for people who have a disability or a long-term condition and face barriers applying to us.

    You can contact us at any time to ask for guidance. We recommend you contact us at least 15 working days before this competition’s closing date to allow us to put the most suitable support in place. You can contact Innovate UK by email or call 0300 321 4357. Our phone lines are open from 9am to 12pm and 2pm to 5pm UK time, Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays).

    You may also contact the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC). Please note that the APC’s role is to provide indicative guidance rather than formal advice. To contact APC email info@apcuk.co.uk.


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