£60m automotive facility to propel UK jobs and investment

The University of Bath has received £28.9 million of government investment to develop the Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS). Scheduled to open in early 2020 and located at the Bristol and Bath Science Park, the Institute will lead the development of future generations of ultra-low emission vehicles and attract sector-related businesses to the region, generating economic growth.

IAAPS is expected to stimulate over £67m in additional automotive research investment by 2025, creating an additional turnover of £800m for the UK automotive sector and supporting nearly 1,900 jobs.

The capital investment from the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s (HEFCE) UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF), will enable construction of the £60m IAAPS facility to start in the summer of 2018.

Companies, including McLaren, Ford, Jaguar Land Rover, Hofer Powertrain and HORIBA Group, as well as local businesses such as HiETA Technologies, have been key to the success of the IAAPS concept. The support and advocacy of the Automotive Council and the Advanced Propulsion Centre, alongside the support of the University’s Industrial Partners will continue to play a key role as the vision becomes reality.

Graham Hoare, director of global vehicle evaluation and verification at Ford Motor Company, said: “IAAPS will build on the strength of the University of Bath’s competence in propulsion development to bring real world examples and real world environments into the laboratory, a massive step forward in innovating propulsion systems.”

Specialist facilities will make IAAPS a centre of excellence for training and skills development in automotive engineering, supporting Apprenticeships, Honours Degrees, Masters and Doctoral courses, in an effort to address the engineering skills shortage facing the UK automotive sector.

Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson said: “Through our Industrial Strategy and £4.7 billion investment for research and development, we're ensuring we capitalise on the great work taking place in universities across the UK and remain at the forefront of innovation.”