Ricardo low carbon, clean technology facility clears planning and starts construction

Ricardo low carbon, clean technology facility clears planning and starts construction
12 June 2013

The new Ricardo Vehicle Emissions Research Centre

  • The new £10 million Vehicle Emissions Research Centre (VERC) will enable the development of next-generation of clean, low carbon vehicles
  • Planning approval granted for world leading  facility at Shoreham, UK, securing Regional Growth Fund support – and allowing construction to commence
  • Contract placed by Ricardo with HORIBA UK to construct and equip the VERC with next generation emissions testing technology


HORIBA CEO Atsushi Horiba (left) and Ricardo UK managing director Martin Fausset (right) celebrate ground-breaking for the VERCRicardo has announced today that following a meeting of the planning committee of Adur District Council, approval has been formally granted for the company’s advanced new low carbon and low emissions vehicle research centre. The project to create this state-of-the-art low carbon, low emissions vehicle research and development facility at Ricardo's Shoreham Technical Centre benefits from financial support provided under the UK Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) in recognition of the jobs created and secured in this important area of clean technology.

“The securing of this planning approval enables the launch of this significant investment and is a crucial milestone in this major project for Ricardo,” explained Ricardo UK Ltd managing director Martin Fausset. “The next generation of road vehicles need to be cleaner and more fuel efficient than ever before, and the testing technology incorporated within this new state-of-the-art facility will help ensure that  Ricardo stays at the forefront of this important area of research and development on a global basis.”

With planning approval now granted, RGF funding is confirmed and the project is entering the construction phase on a 2000 square metre footprint within the Ricardo site. To this end Ricardo has also announced today that a contract has been placed with HORIBA UK covering the detailed design, construction and completion of the centre using HORIBA’s next generation of world leading vehicle testing equipment.

The new Ricardo VERC will comprise a brand new building incorporating two vehicle test cells incorporating four-wheel drive chassis dynamometers and advanced emissions testing equipment. The vehicle test cells will be capable of testing passenger cars and light trucks of up to 3 tonnes, including advanced technology hybrid electric vehicles and their associated energy regeneration systems.  The facility will be climatically controlled with a temperature range of -35 to +55 Celsius. This will help Ricardo test new vehicles for a global market to far more extreme limits than would previously have been possible, replicating the conditions of many aspects of hot and cold climate testing that would otherwise be necessary and thus  allowing clean and fuel efficient vehicles to reach market much faster and at lower development cost. The Ricardo VERC is scheduled to be completed and open for business in the second half of 2014.

The Ricardo and HORIBA team at the VERC ground-breaking ceremony“HORIBA is very pleased to have been awarded the contract to design, build and commission of Ricardo’s new Vehicle Emissions Research Centre,” commented HORIBA Limited chairman, president, and CEO, Mr. Atsushi Horiba. “This project builds upon a longstanding history of collaboration between our two companies in the area of advanced testing technology, and comprises key HORIBA technology and skillsets to deliver this facility from across our group worldwide. We look forward to working with Ricardo to complete this state-of-the-art facility.”

“I am pleased to be able to announce that Ricardo has awarded HORIBA UK the contract to construct and equip the new test facility,” added Ricardo’s Martin Fausset. “With construction now underway, we look forward to its completion and use by Ricardo engineers over the coming years in continuing to deliver the class leading fuel-efficient, low carbon and clean vehicles of tomorrow.”


A full copy of this press release and accompanying high res image downloads are available from the links at the top right of this page.