H2Trac suffers a second bankruptcy

Bold initiatives to produce complex tractors from the ground up, straight from the drawing board are risky enterprises, and it appears that the H2Trac from the Netherlands is the latest venture to succumb to an excess of ambition.

H2Trac suffers a second bankruptcy

H2Trac suffers a second bankruptcy

It has been reported that the firm, and its parent company EOX, were declared bankrupt in the court of the Gelderland province in November.

A second demise for the H2Trac

It was also noted that production of the tractor had ceased six weeks beforehand, although it is not known how many were produced altogether.

The H2Trac was an attempt to create a multi-tool tractor that could run on either diesel or hydrogen.

It was a complicated machine and was an attempt to reinvigorate a design that was first trialled back in 2015, that particular attempt ran out of funds in 2020.

Hybrid drive

This latest reiteration was smaller, although it still relied on using hydrogen power, via fuel cell, with a diesel range extender. Final drive to the wheels was provided by electric motors irrespective of the power source.

Tractor hydrogen hybrid
The H2Trac was designed to be most suitable for row crop work

Paul van Ham is the originator of the tractor and was involved in developing it with both companies. He is quoted as being disappointed with the latest setback.

The latest financial partner has cited lack of both investment funds and retail opportunities in explaining its withdrawal from the project.

Progress can be expensive

The cost of the machine was never publicised, but low volume production on an individual basis is never cheap and it might be considered a little too radical, even for the US market where the company had recruited at least one dealer, based in Arizona.

Meanwhile other attempts to move away from diesel fuel are still struggling to reach take-off speed.

Besides hydrogen, methane has been touted as a replacement and although perfectly viable from an engineering point of view, the cost of recovery from farm sources, and the expense of converting vehicles, has so far kept it confined to situations where environmental concerns outweigh the financial penalties.

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