The Future Powertrain Portfolio

Fuel cells, eFuels, batteries – How to translate net zero ambitions into technology
Dr. Lukas Mauler | Dr. Fabian Duffner | Lukas Hoffmann | Matthias Fesser | Nico Eilers
Oct 2023 | Strategy Paper | Inglese

The Future Powertrain Portfolio

Fuel cells, eFuels, batteries – How to translate net zero ambitions into technology

Various market leaders in industries ranging from agriculture to aviation have committed to achieve net zero targets in order to meet the expectations of their customers, investors, and regulatory authorities. To successfully accomplish these ambitious goals, a departure from fossil fuels like diesel and kerosene is imperative. A wide array of technologies, including batteries, fuel cells, and efuels, are available to enable achieving these targets. Choosing the most suitable technology is crucial for ensuring both product competitiveness and company success in a net zero future.

This Strategy Paper addresses the specific requirements of different industries and products, while evaluating the performance of key powertrain technologies. Moreover, it presents a structured approach for companies to make informed technology decisions based on quantitative technical and economic data.


products from five different industries are analyzed.


key factors will drive net zero ambitions across industries.


overarching powertrain technologies will be key in a net zero future.

Management Summary
  • All industries need to transform to net zero powertrain technologies due to stakeholder interests and improved technology performance.
  • For passenger vehicles, the battery is set to become the dominant net zero powertrain technology.
  • Battery powertrains are not suitable for all industries and use cases, due to technical and economic reasons.
  • Fuel cells and eFuels can be a more attractive powertrain, particularly for weight-sensitive and/or CAPEX-driven use cases.
  • To identify attractive powertrains, technical feasibility and total cost of ownership need to be forecast.
  • To secure market readiness, the technology strategy needs to be followed by a value chain, competence, development, and production strategy.

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