Funding competition APC 9: anchoring low carbon technology development in the UK

UK businesses can share circa £30 million for collaborative, match funded, late stage R&D projects. This is to advance the growth of low carbon propulsion.

This competition is now closed.

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Competition sections


The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) is to invest in a limited number of collaborative research and development (R&D) pre-production match funded projects.

Projects must demonstrate the development of on-vehicle technologies and vehicle infrastructure interfaces, for either on or off-road vehicles. Technologies must be based around one or more of the Auto Council’s 4 strategic technologies:

  • electric machines and power electronics
  • energy storage and energy development
  • lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures
  • thermal propulsion

These projects are required to:

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

This competition follows a 2 stage process consisting of an application and an interview stage.

Funding type


Project size

Total eligible project costs should range from £5 million to £40 million. The duration should be between 18 and 42 months. If your project fall outside any of the project size limits, contact the APC before submission at

Find out whether you are eligible to apply

To be eligible for funding:

  • your project must be collaborative and business led
  • the lead participant must be a grant recipient
  • your project must include a vehicle manufacturer or Tier 1 supplier and an SME partner in your consortium

Non-UK based companies and research organisations are eligible to apply for funding if:

  • they set up an active UK business base before project start, from where the funded work will be carried out
  • provide evidence that they intend to expand their R&D activity in the UK beyond the life of the specific project

Non-UK based companies who aren’t requesting funding can join the consortium.

An RTO cannot lead an APC project but may participate.


If Innovate UK judges that your project is not materially different from your previous project, it will be classed as a resubmission.

If an application is unsuccessful, you may use the feedback received to re-apply for the same project once more. This can be into another round of this competition or another competition.

Projects that we won’t fund

In this competition we are not funding projects covering:

  • technologies that are not primarily linked to the vehicle in operation or recharging
  • fundamental research
  • early stage technologies
  • business as usual

Funding and project details

APC provides funding to support and stimulate innovation in the UK economy.

Provisionally, there is up to circa £30 million of funding to match fund a limited number of collaborative R&D pre-production projects. These projects should address the technical challenges outlined in the scope.

Total eligible project costs:

  • each project will attract no more than 50% of public funding
  • at least 70% must be incurred by commercial organisations
  • a maximum of 30% is available to research participants and if there is more than one research participant, this amount will be shared between them

The grant requested should reflect the minimum amount of funding that is needed for the project to proceed.

Successful applicants can get grant funding towards their eligible project costs. The percentage of costs supported varies depending on:

  • the type of research being carried out
  • the type of organisation involved
  • the outcome of a value-for-money economic assessment carried out by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)

It is important to note that the state aid rules changed on 1 April 2015. They now include increases to the grant thresholds that can be awarded to research and development projects under a General Block Exemption Scheme. For this competition, the thresholds for grants to individual businesses will be:

  • industrial research: maximum EUR 20 million (previously EUR 10 million)
  • experimental development: maximum EUR 15 million (previously EUR 7.5 million)

We reserve the right to apply a portfolio approach to ensure the distribution of technology and funds across the wider APC project portfolio.

Project types

Your project can focus on industrial research or experimental development. Commercial phase projects cannot be funded.

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 UK will invoice all project partners 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.

Projects should support the development of UK supply chain capability. If overseas subcontracting is required, you must provide evidence to demonstrate why this cannot take place within the UK, and how the funding of overseas contractors will benefit the UK economy.

Competition scope

APC 9 is seeking proposals for collaborative research and development projects. These should demonstrate the development of technologies based around one or more of the following technology areas:

  • 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:

  • 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 vehicle propulsion or lightweight systems technology
  • accelerate the development of technology solutions supporting low emission vehicles

In your application you should:

  • show how a commercially viable path to production and volume manufacture will be achieved, and market entry at a globally competitive price
  • have a clear strategy to realise economic benefits, which could include employment (new and safe-guarded jobs), new business activity or expansion of products and services and value for money delivered to customers
  • show how the project will increase knowledge in people and grow expertise in the UK
  • show how the majority of the technologies included in the application are proven or demonstrated in a vehicle representative environment
  • show how you will develop and accelerate the progression of automotive technology and manufacturing readiness
  • consider the performance, durability, integrity and safety of any proposed technology, applying the appropriate standards
  • show that the project delivers additional impact beyond what would be achieved through a business as usual approach
  • show what would happen to the project if funding is not successful and why the specific amount of funding is needed
  • demonstrate how you will handle and secure intellectual property for exploitation by, and to the overall benefit of, UK-based organisations

You are strongly encouraged to demonstrate senior management commitment to the success of the project and consortium. In part you can do this by showing that the consortium’s collaboration agreement is well advanced at the point of submission.

Projects that will accelerate disruptive technologies towards market entry are particularly encouraged.

For further clarification on the scope of this competition, please contact APC by calling 02476 528 700.

8 January 2018
Competition opens
15 January 2018
Briefing event. Watch the recording.
7 March 2018 12:00pm
Competition closes
26 April 2018
27 April 2018
30 April 2018
1 May 2018
2 May 2018
3 May 2018
27 July 2018 7:55am
Applicants notified

Before you start

When you start an application you will be prompted to create an account as the lead applicant or sign in as a representative of your organisation. You will need an account to track the progress of your application.

Only the lead organisation can create an application. Contributors or collaborators will need to be invited to participate by the lead organisation.

As the lead applicant you will be responsible for:

  • collecting the information for your application
  • representing your organisation in leading the project if your application is successful
You will be able to invite:

  • colleagues to contribute to the application
  • other organisations to participate in the project as partners if your application is successful

Partner organisations can be other businesses, research organisations, public sector organisations or charities.

Assessment and interviews

Following the written stage, successful applicants will be invited to give a presentation and interview to the assessment panel.

If you are invited to give a presentation, we will provide you with written feedback on your application and guidance to help you prepare. The guidance will describe the process and give you specific areas to prepare answers for.

To prepare for the interview, you are expected to:

  • review the feedback on your written application
  • prepare and submit a written response to feedback, which will be given to the interview panel to review before your interview. These are to be in the form of a single PDF (for each response) or Word document, which may include charts or diagrams
  • prepare and submit your presentation material
  • prepare and submit your list of attendees
  • work with your consortium to develop a collaboration agreement, a mature draft of which should be brought to interview

You may submit up to 10 A4 pages of response to the technical assessment and up to 6 A4 pages of response to the economic value assessment.

Economic value assessment

The economic value assessment is conducted by professional economists employed by BEIS, in both the written and interview stages. They assess the predicted value for money of the project from the perspective of taxpayers and UK PLC. In order for HM Treasury to release funds for grants, the value for money of each project must reach an acceptable threshold.

Section 4 of the application relates to the economic assessment and value for money. You are asked to download the value for money worksheet to complete questions 11 to 15 and upload as an appendix.

Value for money, or cost benefit ratio, in this case is defined as:

Cost benefit ratio = net economic benefit to the UK / cost to the exchequer

The net economic benefit to the UK consists of:

1. R&D and innovation.

2. Employment:

  • newly created jobs
  • safeguarded jobs
  • indirect supply chain jobs

3. Upskilling.

4. Wider benefits:

  • CO2 savings and other air quality improvements
  • benefits to those outside of the consortium, such as increased fuel savings to UK consumers, increased UK supply chain content and sales

Increased profits for consortium members are not included within the value for money assessment.

Benefits will be discounted considering:

1. Additionality: to what extent would these benefits occur without government support? For example, would the project happen but over a slower timescale, would it take place abroad, or happen on a smaller scale?

2. Displacement: to what extent is a project displacing employment, investment and economic activity in other parts of the UK?

3. Risk: what is the risk of the project not achieving stated economic benefits? This depends on:

  • project and consortium complexity
  • the investment required
  • risk management strategy
  • the technology itself

The cost to the exchequer is the size of the grant requested in the application and any other public funding needed to achieve the benefits you highlighted in this application.

The Economic Value assessment is conducted by a team of economists who assess the application and provide a view of their analysis to a review panel. This analysis is heavily quality assured by senior economists within BEIS to ensure the judgement is an accurate and independent reflection of the information that has been provided.

If you are invited to interview, economists from BEIS may require further information beyond what has been presented in your application. Before the interview you will receive the written feedback from BEIS economists (together with feedback from technical assessors). You then have the opportunity to supply a separate written response containing supplementary information. This response must be submitted before the interview.

Report on economic outcomes

As a condition of APC project grant funding, you must provide BEIS and APC with annual records which show the realised and expected economic outputs your project has produced.

You must provide robust, credible and timely data on your project’s progress. This data helps policymakers evaluate whether the APC programme is good value for money.

Each partner must:

  • nominate an individual responsible for reporting
  • flag any information they consider too costly to collect
  • agree reporting timings
  • report on economic monitoring information annually, or at an alternative schedule agreed with APC, Innovate UK and BEIS

You will also provide other data if it is requested. Project monitoring and meetings will be carried out by representatives of Innovate UK, BEIS and APC, and any other individuals as agreed with you.

Research organisations

Research organisations may participate in applications as collaborators.

There are limits on the involvement research partners can have in your project. Read the participation rules in the ‘Eligibility’ tab.

Your research participation cannot be more than 30% or you will not be able to submit your application.

What we will ask you

The application is split into 3 sections:

  1. Project details
  2. Application questions, including the economic assessment: value for money
  3. Finances

1. Project details

Explain your project. This section is not scored, but our assessors will use it to decide whether the project fits with the scope of the competition.

Application details

The lead applicant must complete this section. Give your project’s title, start date and length. List any partner organisations you have named as collaborators.

Project summary

Describe your project briefly, and be clear about what makes it innovative, and which primary technology themes the project develops. We use this section to assign experts to assess your application.

Public description

Describe your project in detail, and in a way that you are happy to see published. Please do not include any commercially sensitive information. If your project is successful and awarded funding, we will publish this description. This could be before you start your project.

Project scope

Describe how your project fits the scope of the competition. If your project is not in scope it will be immediately rejected. We will give you feedback if we decide that your project is not in scope.

2. Application questions

Part 1: The business proposition

(10 points per question = 40 points in total).

Answers in part 1 of the application are limited to 800 words.

Question 1. What is the business opportunity that this project addresses? Outline the business opportunity. What do the project team need to do to successfully address it within the proposed timeframe and cost? Describe the potential issues facing you and/or your potential customers and how the intended outputs of the project will address these.

Supporting evidence for this question can be included in the appendix for question 4.

Question 2. What is the size of the market you are targeting? This is a 2 part question.

Part A

Describe the size of the market opportunities that this project might open up, adding supporting evidence of:

  • the current nature of the specific markets you are targeting, for instance, is it characterised by price competition amongst commoditised suppliers? Is it dominated by a single leading firm?
  • the market dynamics including its current size, actual and predicted growth rates
  • outline your strategy for targeting the projected market share, with justification in the light of any potential competitors
  • the potential to create value-added benefits for the UK and/or the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • quantify how long the value added benefits will continue for in terms of the technology’s life span

If your technology is being purchased by an original equipment manufacturer outside the consortium then give details on who the buyers will be. Submit any evidence of future purchasing commitments such as letters of support.

Describe and clearly quantify the return on investment that the project could achieve. Provide relevant source data references.

For highly innovative projects where the market may be unexplored, explain:

  • what the route to market could or might be
  • what the barriers to entry might be
  • what the market size might be, with calculations and assumptions underlining this view made clear
  • how the project will look to explore the market potential

Part B

Identify any competitors in the market and indicate those who are UK based.

Discuss the likely impact of a successful or unsuccessful bid on those competitors. Where possible include changes in market share and the level of business you expect to win from these competitors as a result of receiving grant funding.

Discuss the geographical location of the markets you expect to sell in and estimate the proportion of the technology you expect to export. Make reference to the vehicle class and price bracket that will be used in the export. Where will your primary location be and why?

Where will you recruit any new staff from? How highly skilled you expect the roles to be? What level of demand you expect there to be in the market place for these staff?

Please complete part A and part B in the same text box. Please clearly mark as part A or part B. Supporting evidence for both parts of this question can be included in the appendix for question 4.

Question 3. How will the results of the project be exploited and disseminated?

List or describe the potential outputs of the project that can be exploited such as:

  • products or services
  • processes
  • applications

Describe how these outputs will be exploited by partners including, where applicable:

  • the route to market
  • protection of intellectual property rights
  • supply chain benefits
  • reconfiguration of the value system
  • changes to business models and business processes
  • other methods of exploitation and protection

Discuss the phasing of the project and the intended manufacturing locations of the technology or technologies developed. For UK based manufacturing, justify why this would occur in the UK and identify any risks. Describe the follow on investment needed.

Risks associated with accessing investment should be detailed in the risk analysis in question 7 and in the risk table in appendix B. If you have any evidence of your intention for manufacturing in the UK, for example letters of intent, please include these in the appendix for question 4.

Where helpful to the exchange of best practice and not damaging to commercial interests, the results from this work should be made public on a voluntary basis. A strategy for dissemination of generic outputs from the funded project should be included. Read more about dissemination in our funding rules.

Question 4. What impact might this project have both inside and outside the project team?

You should identify, and where possible measure, the economic benefits from the project to those inside and outside the project. This can be in the form of productivity increases and import substitution. You could include benefits to customers, others in the supply chain, broader industry and the UK economy. Make a clear distinction between the 2 groups in your answer.

Identify, and where possible measure, any expected social and environmental impacts, either positive or negative, for example:

  • jobs (safeguarded, created, changed, displaced)
  • education or upskilling
  • how CO2 benefits will be delivered beyond those mandated by regulation
  • how air quality improvements will be delivered.
  • explain how the technologies will deliver these CO2 savings by each piece of technology where appropriate
  • explain how fuel savings will work for customershealth and safety
  • regulations
  • diversity
  • quality of life
  • social inclusion/exclusion
  • any expected impact on government priorities

Identify any expected regional impacts of the project.

Where possible you should reference relevant studies, reports, data or previous projects.

This question should be answered together with section 4 of the application, questions 11 to 15. Please use this question as an opportunity to explain or justify your assumptions in preparing the quantitative data included in section 4.

Supporting evidence can be provided in an appendix. Please name your appendix ‘Appendix A’. You can also include any supporting information for questions 1, 2A, 2B and 3. Please make clear within the appendix which question your content relates to.

Part 2: The project details

(10 points per question = 40 points in total).

Answers in part 2 of the application are limited to 600 words.

Question 5. What technical approach will be adopted and how will you manage the project effectively?

  • outline the main work packages of the project, indicating the lead partner assigned to each, and the total cost of each one
  • describe your approach to project management, identifying any major tools and mechanisms that will be used to ensure a successful project outcome
  • highlight your approach to managing the most innovative aspects of the project
  • outline the management reporting lines
  • outline your project plan in sufficient detail to identify any links or dependencies between work packages or milestones
  • how will your project enhance the manufacturing maturity of the technology?
  • describe rival technologies and alternative R&D strategies; how will your proposal offer a better outcome
  • how will your project target commercialisation at project end?

Supporting evidence for this question can be included in the appendix for question 7.

Question 6. What is innovative about this project?

Identify the extent to which the project is innovative both commercially and technically:

  • does your project push boundaries over and beyond current leading-edge world science and technology?
  • is your project looking to apply existing technologies in new areas?
  • explain why and how you are confident that you have freedom to operate, that your IP is free from restriction and able to be readily exploited

Highlight and explain the timeliness and novelty of the research aspects of the project in an industrial and/or academic context.

Detail evidence that the intended work is innovative. This could include the results of patent searches, competitor analyses, literature surveys etc. If applicable, you should also outline your own background intellectual property rights, as related to the project.

Supporting evidence for this question can be included in the appendix for question 7.

Question 7. What are the main risks (technical, commercial and environmental) to project success?

  • identify the main risks and uncertainties of the project, including the technical, commercial, managerial and environmental risks
  • highlight the most significant ones and provide a risk register
  • explain how these risks will be mitigated
  • list any project inputs on the critical route to completion such as resources, expertise or data sets
  • is the output likely to be subject to regulatory requirements, certification, ethical or other similar issues? If so how will you manage this?

Risks can include but are not limited to:

  • funding gaps
  • investment needed for production facility
  • future sales risks
  • CO2 savings
  • supply chain capacity and OEM purchasing

For UK based manufacturing, please justify why this would occur in the UK and identify any risks to this occurring. Describe the follow on investments needed and risks associated with achieving those investments.

Upload a risk table as an appendix. Please name your appendix ‘Appendix B’. You can also include any supporting information for questions 5 and 6. Please make clear within the appendix which question your content relates to.

Question 8. Does your project team have the right skills and experience and access to facilities to deliver your project?

Upload an appendix, providing details of the specific expertise and track record of each partner and subcontractor to address this question. Please name your appendix ‘Appendix C’.

  • describe the roles, skills, track record and relevant experience of all members of the project team in relation to the approach you will be taking
  • describe the resources, equipment and facilities required for the project and how you will access them
  • provide details of any vital external parties, including sub-contractors, who you will need to work with to successfully carry out the project. Explain why these roles cannot be filled within the consortium
  • describe the current relationships between the project partners and how these will change as a result of the project
  • detail why the project partners came together and what benefits you each bring to the project

Part 3: Funding and added value

(10 points per question = 20 points in total).

Answers in this part of the application are limited to 1,000 words.

Question 9. What is the financial commitment required for the project? This is a 2 part question.

Part A

What is the anticipated project cost? Describe the level of contribution from any project participants and the level of grant funding required. This information should be provided in the financial summary table in the application form.

Supporting information and explanation for project costs should be provided. It must be consistent with the category of research and development undertaken within each work package.

If the project spans more than one type of funding, for example, because significant work packages are in both fundamental and industrial research, you must describe and justify the breakdown of costs between them:

  • is the budget realistic for the scale and complexity of the project?
  • does the required financial support from APC fit within the limits set by the specific competition?
  • have you demonstrated a financial commitment from other sources for the balance of the project costs?
  • has a realistic budget breakdown been provided?
  • have any work package breakdowns been described and justified adequately?

Part B

What is the total investment needed to bring the technology to production? You should distinguish between the APC funded project and the overall investment. What is the proposed investment in R&D, skills, capital and training?

List and assign a proportion for the source of private sector investment by: retained earnings, external debt, equity investment or other source.

Where the source is retained earnings, describe the decision making process in allocating this R&D spending. You should make reference to whether the R&D spending is internationally competitive and/or found from UK company budgets.

List any other public funds, including any tax relief, that the consortium has applied for, or received, that relate to this project or application. Indicate the size of the funding, the relevant body and details on the type of funding and conditions.

Please complete part A and part B in the same text box and appendix. You must clearly mark as part A or part B. Supporting evidence for this question can be included in the appendix for question 10.

Question 10. How does financial support from APC and its funding collaborators add value?

You should describe or explain:

  • the total project cost and the funding being requested in terms of the project goals
  • why this specific level of funding is required (provide supporting evidence in appendix D such as business cases, internal rate of return analysis, or other comparison analysis of with or without APC funding)
  • what will happen if the application is not successful (project scaled back, delayed, moved abroad or not occur) and why? Provide supporting evidence in appendix D such as business cases, internal memos showing decision making processes, cost comparisons for alternative locations, or other comparison analysis of with or without APC funding how APC funding would allow you to undertake the project differently (sooner, more quickly on a larger scale) and why this is beneficial to the UK
  • how the partners will finance their contributions to the project and other sources of funding already considered
  • why this project cannot be funded internally or through other private sources. Provide supporting evidence in appendix D of funding sources which were considered providing supporting evidence of the outcome of these for example, proof of declined credit
  • whether there will be R&D investment or spend as a result of this funding
  • how successful delivery will increase total spend on R&D in the UK
  • demonstrate the collaboration benefits of the project including proximity, multiple sectors and work with other research organisations

If the project could not go ahead in the UK without APC funding, then where would it be located and why?

Include information on:

  • the current type and size of operations in these locations
  • the expected size and growth of the local or regional market
  • expected cost structure (wages, building, transport, energy)
  • any existing infrastructure or financial support available
  • the quality and availability of equivalent workforce and science and research base in these alternative locations

You may be asked for additional financial information that relates to your bid or organisation. This could be specific to both the project and consortium members. This requirement will vary across applications. It will depend upon the nature of the application, and the specific argument for support around which you have structured the application. The decision to seek additional financial information will be taken by BEIS and will be communicated to you.

You can submit supporting evidence as an appendix. Please name your appendix ‘Appendix D’. You can also include any supporting information for questions 9 and 11-15. Please make clear within the appendix which question your content relates to.

Value for money worksheet

Part 4. Economic assessment: value for money (questions 11-15)

Download the value for money worksheet to complete questions 11 to 15 and upload as an appendix. If you do not upload the completed spreadsheet your application will be marked as ineligible. For each question, please use the notes section to demonstrate how your numbers have been derived.

Once you have uploaded the spreadsheet, type its file name into the text field.

If you have further supporting information for this question, you can include it in the appendix for question 10.


All data needs to be entered into the grey cells in the worksheets, or by selecting an option from a list in a drop-down menu (these cells are coloured brown). Cells coloured yellow are title cells which cannot be changed. Worksheets are protected so that data cannot be entered into incorrect cells.

You can add additional rows in the jobs worksheet. This is so jobs can be defined separately for each project partner for the required number of NVQ levels. To preserve formatting, additional lines should be inserted in the middle of rows of input cells. Blank lines can be used to title project partners and group the jobs according to your preferences.

Additional rows can also be inserted as required into the training and Technology Readiness Level /Manufacturing Readiness Level worksheets.


In the index sheet, provide the following information:

  • project title
  • APC Applicant number (if known)
  • lead company partner name
  • contact email address of person completing this form

The first year of the project is set by default to the year that grant funding is available. It can be changed to the next year if needed, using the drop-down menu. Using the second drop-down menu, ensure that the first year of expected vehicle sales is defined. This is consistent with the first year that corresponding manufacturing jobs will be created and/or safeguarded. This may be towards the end of the APC funded R&D project or later.

Question 11. What is the proposed research and development (R&D) investment in the project?

This section enables assessors to quantify the economic value of research and development, capital investment and any increase in the skills level of the automotive supply chain. Investment captured here should be investment that occurs in the UK only.

Under EU State Aid guidelines, R&D expenditure can fall into one of three categories (see Q11 excel sheet for definitions of these). APC project activities need to be consistent with these definitions. A breakdown between the 3 categories is not normally required.

R&D expenditure includes all R&D spending that will occur if the applicant is awarded grant funding. This includes any additional (industry) funding provided by project partners. Expenditure not relating to or resulting from this project should not be included. The notes column can be used to justify or explain the numbers quoted in the application form.

Capital equipment includes all capital spending that will occur if the applicant is awarded grant funding. This should be calculated in the same way as ‘capital usage’ is claimed in the partner finance form. It should be the sum of capital usage for all project partners.

Skills and training includes all expenditure on training staff which is specific to and necessary for the project. Enter expenditure split by R&D, capital and skills for the following subsets:

Government funding: An aggregation of the data provided in partner finance forms. This will provide an annual view of how much public funding is expected to be used for R&D, Capital and Skills Investment.

Industry funding: An aggregation of the data provided in partner finance forms. This will provide an annual view of how much private funding is expected to be used for R&D, capital and skills investment.

Additional company funding: spent on related projects because of this project. This will include follow-on investment as a result of the project on related projects. It will be split by R&D, capital and skills investment. For example, subsequent R&D to bring the product to market or capital investment for a production facility. Exclude any funding for which additional government funding (from any scheme) is expected to be obtained. In addition, provide details of further overseas investment.

Further investment outside of the UK because of the project. This is to report any additional related overseas investment as a result of the project, providing a split by country. For this section, you do not need to provide a breakdown between R&D expenditure, capital equipment and skills and training.

12. How will the project lead to job creation and safeguarding?

This section records the change to employment due to the project. On a cumulative basis, provide the number of jobs created and/or safeguarded grouped by:

  • research and development or design
  • manufacturing

Exclude administrative and marketing or sales jobs.

R&D and Design jobs can be specified for up to 10 years from the start of the APC project. If a small number of manufacturing jobs are created or safeguarded during the R&D phase of the project for example, for pilot runs to support any product development or testing, they can be included in this section and labelled accordingly.

Ensure that the first year of production has been specified in the required cell in the index worksheet. Up to 10 years of manufacturing jobs data can be specified from this start date, which will normally be towards the end of the R&D or design phase.

Manufacturing jobs for production need to be supported by evidence of product sales. See question 13b.

In the note section applicants must explain how the job numbers have been derived, including calculations and assumptions underpinning estimates.

Job creation and safeguarding

A job created is a new job that will be linked to this project and last for a minimum of 12 months.

Safeguarded jobs are those which already exist in the consortium before the start of the project, and would be lost without the funding. The funding must allow a safeguarded job to be retained for a minimum of 12 months for the job to be listed under safeguarded jobs.

Numbers quoted should only include jobs created or safeguarded in the UK. Only include jobs from within the consortium that can be directly linked to this project. The job figures should be given in units of full time equivalent (FTE) posts. Treat part-time workers as a proportion of FTE.

Each job linked to the project should include the duration, the NVQ level (see NVQ definitions tab in the spreadsheet), salary and geographic location through a postcode. For agency workers or temporary staff, please include the posts by converting to the number of FTE posts this would represent.

Direct jobs are the UK jobs that will occur within the consortium companies. Do not include any jobs created or safeguarded outside of the consortium or the UK.

The job figures are recorded cumulatively, with a value showing in each column for the whole period over which the job will exist, not just in the year in which the job starts. The cumulative total should extend to the end of the project and could reduce in later years if staff stop working on the project before it ends.

For example: in year 1, the project creates a total of 20 R&D jobs. In the following 3 years, an additional 5 R&D jobs will be created each year. After year 4, the R&D phase of the project comes to an end. In year 3, 100 manufacturing jobs are created and these staff will remain working on the project for 3 years. The following year, 20 manufacturing staff will stop working on the project. This should result in the following:

Year 1 R&D jobs 20 manufacturing jobs

Year 2 R&D jobs 25 manufacturing jobs

Year 3 R&D jobs 30 manufacturing jobs 100

Year 4 R&D jobs 35 manufacturing jobs 100

Year 5 R&D jobs manufacturing jobs 100

Year 6 R&D jobs manufacturing jobs 80

Appraisers will consider the risk of non-delivery where applications include substantial jobs, or other benefits, outside the contractual period. Depending on the supporting evidence and narrative provided in the application, this may lead to economic benefit valuations being revised down.

Q13a. What vehicles are expected to adopt the APC technologies under development?

Information can be submitted for up to 4 different vehicle platforms which will use the new technology. First use the dropdown menu to define whether vehicle usage will be defined in terms of ‘kilometre (km) or year’ (the norm) or ‘kilowatt hour (kWh) or year’ (this normally only applies to off-road vehicles). Note that the vehicle usage definition cannot be mixed within the form, but APC technology is unlikely to apply to both cases. If necessary create a copy of sheets Q13a and Q13b).

Provide the following information in separate columns for each vehicle platform (up to 4 vehicles) which will use the new project technology.

Vehicle make or description: Please provide details about the vehicle including make and model.

Engine type: From the drop-down menu, please select whether the vehicle engine type is petrol, diesel, hybrid or electric.

Comparator engine type: From the dropdown menu, please select whether the comparator vehicle engine type is petrol or diesel. See details on comparator vehicles in the ‘expected carbon savings’ section below.

Usage per year: Please provide the average annual vehicle usage. This needs to be defined in terms of km per year or KWh per year, as defined earlier.

Lifetime of vehicle: Please provide the average lifetime of the vehicle.

Percentage of sales exported to EU: Please provide the expected proportion of sales which will be exported to the EU (excluding the UK).

Percentage of sales exported to the rest of the world: Please provide the expected proportion of sales which will be exported to the rest of the world (excluding the EU).

Percentage of tailpipe CO2 savings from this APC project: Estimate the percentage of vehicle CO2 reduction that is achieved specifically by delivering the project technologies to the vehicle platform. For example, if the new vehicles will have multiple technologies applied, all of which will contribute to a CO2 reduction, but only 30% of the CO2 reduction is a result of the technologies that are developed within the project, state ‘30%’. If it is claimed that 100% of CO2 savings are attributed to the APC project, it should be explained why all carbon savings can be attributed to the specific technology developed in the APC project and not to any other technologies.

Percentage of fuel savings from this APC project: As with carbon savings, applicants should identify the percentage of fuel savings that is directly attributable to the APC project.

Q13b. For each vehicle, what are the expected vehicle sales carbon and fuel savings forecasts for adopting the APC technology under development?

This section provides an opportunity for applicants to outline and quantify wider benefits, primarily carbon savings and fuel savings to UK customers.

This section provides an opportunity for applicants to outline and quantify wider benefits, primarily carbon savings and fuel savings to UK customers. For each vehicle specified in worksheet Q13a, provide the following information for each year that sales are expected to take place (up to 10 years from the first year of production) as defined in the index sheet.

Expected vehicle sales Provide for each year the forecast of vehicle sales (absolute number).

You will need to specify the expected volume of vehicle sales which will use the new technologies developed. Vehicle sales should be based on vehicle sales which are highly likely to materialise, such as sales arising from new planned vehicle production lines or firm agreements from vehicle manufacturers. They should not be based on speculative opportunities.

Expected carbon savings For each year provide the following in terms of gCO2/km (or gCO2/kWh as specified in Q13a):

  • comparator vehicle CO2 tailpipe emissions
  • improved CO2 tailpipe emissions for sales vehicle

Only tailpipe CO2 savings that are not part of an EU emissions trading scheme should be included.

Assessors need to understand the CO2 benefits that will be delivered beyond those which are mandated by regulation, or achieved by current best in class vehicles. As such, include a comparator vehicle to represent best in-class.

The comparator vehicle emissions will be expected to have an improved CO2 performance over time, in-line with future emissions performance expectations. Use the notes column to explain or reference assumptions made in defining the comparator vehicle CO2 performance, including reference to changing legislation.

Expected fuel savings for consumers

For each year provide the following in terms of litres/km:

  • comparator vehicle fuel use
  • improved fuel use for sales vehicle

Any fuel savings to consumers that arise as a result of applicants going beyond existing regulations should also be recorded. As with recording carbon savings, this should include a comparator vehicle or propulsion system which is expected to have an improved fuel economy performance over time, in-line with future performance expectations.

Fuel savings to consumers should only be included if the additional savings will not be captured in the price of the vehicle.

Q14. Number of employees upskilled and apprentices, MSc and PhD students working on the project

In this section please provide details of the number of employees expected to benefit from training which is specific and necessary to this project. You should only provide information on upskilling which is likely to add value, such as productivity improvements, bringing technical skills up-to-date or addressing skills gaps. Training that organisations are already required to undertake to meet health and safety or professional membership requirements should not be recorded in the table.

In the relevant tables, please provide the expected number of R&D or design and manufacturing employees who will be upskilled each year. Provide in the narrative box some indication of the duration of training and upskilling acquired.

Report the number of apprentices, MSc and PhD students who are expected to work on the project each year. These individuals should more than likely be included in the jobs figures provided in Q12. Where apprentices, MSc or PhD students are working on the R&D project on a part-time basis, report their number on a pro-rata basis using full-time equivalents (FTEs).

Q15. How will the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) and Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) of the developed technologies progress through this project?

The form is split into two sections. The first section covers the current status of the technology to be developed in the project and the second section covers the end state of the technology, after the proposed project has been completed.

In the first section identify the systems, sub-systems and/or elements that will be progressed with the project and categorise the TRL and MRL levels that they will have achieved before starting the project. Please contact APC for further guidance on TRL and MRL definitions.

In the second section identify the end state of each technology.

In both cases, the TRL and MRL levels assigned should be supported by specific justifications in line with the examples given in the guide.

3. Finances

The finances section asks each organisation to complete project costs, organisational details and funding details for each organisation in your project. Academics will need to complete and upload a Je-S form. For full details on what costs you can claim please see our project costs guidance.

Background and further information

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) was formed in 2013 from a commitment between the government and automotive industry. The aim is to position the UK as a global centre of excellence for low carbon vehicle development and production. The APC is a central automotive support pillar of the Automotive Council Industrial Strategy, to help accelerate the development of low carbon advanced propulsion systems and vehicle weight reduction.

APC competitions are formally delivered in partnership between the APC, Innovate UK and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The APC will:

  1. Work with consortia to support bid development.
  2. Support the competition process, hosting both launch and guidance events and interviews.
  3. Act as advocates for consortia to improve future competitions.
  4. Support project delivery once contracts are awarded, through APC staff.
  5. Act as a source of guidance for consortia during the key critical project start-up phase, and while projects are running.
  6. Monitor the impact of the project portfolio.

Innovate UK will:

  1. Deliver the competition process and technical assessment framework.
  2. Support and manage applicant queries about the competition process.
  3. Issue and manage grant contracts.
  4. Provide formal assurance that projects are meeting their commitments once they are running (known as Project Monitoring).
  5. Approve financial claims and issue funds.

BEIS will:

  1. Assess the benefit that the proposed project will deliver to the UK economy, through value for money assessment if that benefit meets an acceptable level and all other assessment criteria are met, BEIS will make a recommendation to Ministers to support funding.
  2. Formally monitor delivery of economic outputs during and after delivery of the project.

APC is able to help by:

  1. Providing general guidance regarding interpretation of competition rules and guidelines on an informal basis.
  2. Helping your consortium to structure the bid development process.
  3. Explaining common pitfalls.
  4. Answering questions regarding whether or not your project is within scope.
Note that the APC role is to provide indicative guidance rather than formal advice.

Contact APC at or call +44 (0)24 7652 8700.

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