Funding competition APC8: Anchoring low carbon technology in the UK

You can apply as part of a consortia for a share of £35 million to develop low carbon technologies. This is to match fund collaborative research and development (R&D), pre-production projects.

This competition is now closed.

Register and apply online

Competition sections

Description

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) is to invest up to £35 million in a number of collaborative research and development (R&D) pre-production match-funded projects for low carbon automotive technologies.

Projects must demonstrate the development of technologies based around one or more of the Automotive Council’s 'sticky' technologies. There is more detail in the scope and on page 6 of the guidance for applicants.

These projects are required to:

  • deliver significant reductions in vehicle CO2 emissions and improvements in air quality
  • strengthen UK capability and develop the UK’s supply chain in the field of low carbon vehicles

Total eligible project costs should range from £5 million to £40 million. They should range between 18 and 42 months.

Projects must be collaborative and business-led, with a clear demonstrable route to market.

Please note that this brief provides a summary of the scope, eligibility and application process. Please read the guidance for applicants for more comprehensive and detailed information.

Funding type

Grant

Project size

Total eligible projects costs of between £5 million and £40 million.

Find out if you are eligible to apply

To lead a project you must:

  • be a UK-based business
  • be a business of any size
  • carry out your project in the UK
  • work in collaboration with others (businesses, research base and/or third sector)
  • include a vehicle manufacturer or a tier 1 supplier and a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) partner

For all research organisations, the total level of project participation is set at a maximum of 30% of total eligible project costs. If your consortium contains more than one research organisation, this maximum will be shared between them.

Projects that we won't fund

In this competition we are not funding projects covering:

  • technologies that primarily reside off the vehicle
  • fundamental research
  • early-stage technologies
  • business as usual

Funding and project details

The APC will match fund a limited number of collaborative R&D pre-productions projects, which have a clear route to market.

Each project will attract no more than 50% public funding of the total eligible project costs. The consortia must decide how to balance funding so that the total grant request for the project does not exceed this.

At least 70% of the total eligible project costs must be incurred by commercial organisations.

Projects are assessed competitively in value for money terms. As such, it may not be in the consortia’s best interest to request the maximum allowable grant under the rules of the competition. The grant requested should reflect the minimum amount of funding that is needed for the project to proceed.

Project types

Your project can focus on industrial research or experimental development.

For industrial research, you could get:

  • up to 70% of your eligible project costs if you are a small business
  • up to 60% if you are a medium-sized business
  • up to 50% if you are a large business

For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get:

  • up to 45% of your eligible project costs if you are a small business
  • up to 35% if you are a medium-sized business
  • up to 25% if you are a large business

APC will invoice all project for equivalent of 3.5% of total grant value.

Detailed guidance providing reference information on the different categories is provided in the Innovate UK funding rules.

Competition scope

The aim of this competition is to address the challenge of:

  • producing lower-carbon transportation
  • improving air quality
  • developing a UK supply chain for the next generation of lightweight vehicles and propulsion systems

We are looking to match fund projects that demonstrate the development of technologies based around one or more of the Automotive Council's 'sticky' technologies. These are:

  • alternative propulsion systems
  • electric machines and power electronics
  • energy storage and energy management
  • lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures
  • thermal propulsion systems

Projects are required to:

  • lead to significant reductions in vehicle CO2 emissions and improvements in air quality
  • strengthen UK capability and develop the UK’s supply chain in the field of low carbon vehicles
  • increase knowledge in people and grow expertise in the UK
  • advance technology and manufacturing maturity for technologies that have already been proven in a laboratory or vehicle environment
  • deliver additional impact beyond what would be achieved through the business as usual approach

Projects need to be collaborative and business-led, with a clear route to market within a short time frame of finish of the project. They must also involve at least one vehicle manufacturer and/or tier 1 supplier and at least one SME.

Specific competition themes

Specific competition themes are to:
  • deliver significant reductions in vehicle CO2 emissions and improvements in air quality
  • strengthen UK capability and develop the UK’s supply chain in the field of low carbon vehicles
  • develop on-vehicle technologies and vehicle infrastructure interfaces, for either on-road or off-road vehicles
  • develop and accelerate the progression of automotive technology and manufacturing readiness
We expect the majority of the technologies included in the application to have been proven/demonstrated in a vehicle representative environment.
Projects that accelerate disruptive technologies towards market entry are particularly encouraged.
10 July 2017
Competition opens
17 July 2017
Applicant briefing.
20 September 2017
Registration closes.
20 September 2017 12:00pm
Registration closes
27 September 2017 12:00pm
Competition closes
27 October 2017
Feedback and invite to interview.
8 November 2017
Response to feedback deadline.
15 November 2017
Deadline for submission of presentation and attendees.
27 November 2017
Interview period begins.
30 November 2017
Interview period ends.
15 December 2017
Applicants notified

Before you start

To apply:

  • register online
  • read the detailed guidance for applicants for this competition. This explains the scope, eligibility criteria and application process in detail
  • attend the briefing event (optional)

Guidance for applicants

A PDF guidance for applicants can be downloaded here. Please note the guidance was updated on 1 August 2017. Please use version 2.0 when completing your application.
APC8 Guidance v 3.0.pdf (opens in a new window)

Background and further information

If you need more information you can contact the following:

APC

Email: info@apcuk.co.uk or call +44 (0)24 7652 8700.

The APC is able to provide general guidance regarding the interpretation of competition rules and guidelines on an informal basis. It can also help your consortia to structure the bid development process, explain common pitfalls and whether your project is in scope.

Innovate UK

Call the competition helpline on 0300 321 4357 or email us at support@innovateuk.gov.uk.

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