Commercialising Connected and Automated Mobility: Mass transit

Key Features

UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £1.5 million for feasibility studies into the use of connected and automated mobility as a mass transit solution.

Programme:     Innovate UK

Award:     Share of up to £1.5 million

Opens: 23rd May 2022

Closes: 20th Jul 2022

! This scheme is now closed


Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) to invest up to £41.5 million in innovation projects across two competition strands.

The aim of this competition is to support the CCAV ambition to progress technologies, products and services into commercial offerings.


In this strand: Commercialising Connected & Automated Mobility: Mass transit, CCAV is seeking proposals where Connected and Automated Mobility (CAM) could deliver a significantly more cost effective, and low carbon solution than traditional public transport options.

Your project must identify a new application for CAM as a mass transit solution on a segregated route and quantify the real-life potential of a suitable solution.

Your proposed automated vehicle services must be on physically segregated infrastructure: routes that are not open to public access: for vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and other road users. This can include for example, tracks, disused railway routes.

Your proposal must:

  • consider the utilisation of new CAM technologies for innovative mass transit services on segregated infrastructure, including both new and disused infrastructure, or infrastructure that would otherwise require a significant upgrade
  • propose the design, delivery, and operational cases for the introduction of a service on a specific, UK route currently underserved by public transport, including how it could be practically delivered and operated as part of an integrated public transport network.
  • solve real-life transport problems and focus on areas and routes in the UK that are currently underserved by public transport, particularly areas where traditional rail services are not deemed viable
  • set out why an automated vehicle service would provide better outcomes than traditional mass transit modes, for example, heavy and light rail, tram and bus, including guided busways
  • consider how a service could be improved or expanded in the future, for example, as technology develops and legislation enables the use of automated vehicles on public roads

Specific Themes

Your project must consider all the following themes:

  • economic, social, and decarbonisation benefits, considering the Green Book
  • capital expenditure and operational expenditure
  • infrastructure and service delivery plan and timelines
  • commercial viability and revenue protection
  • passenger capacity and scalability of service
  • encouraging the use of public transport
  • integration into existing public transport networks, including active travel, with consideration of connected infrastructure, on demand and Mobility as a Service technologies
  • connecting underserved routes, locations, or populations to employment centres, education opportunities and larger population centres
  • ensuring safety and security, including cyber security
  • use of UK-based automation and infrastructure technologies and expertise
  • ensuring public trust in the service
  • ensuring accessibility and inclusivity of the service

Your project can consider the use of CAM:

  • on new infrastructure
  • on disused infrastructure or infrastructure that otherwise requires costly upgrades, for example rail lines
  • in rural, semi-rural or urban environments

Funding Costs

Innovate UK have allocated up to £1.5million to fund innovation projects in this strand. Funding will be in the form of a grant.

You should apply for the minimum amount of funding required to make your project viable.

If the majority of your organisation’s work on the project is commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically.

For feasibility study projects, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 70% if you are a micro or small organisation
  • up to 60% if you are a medium sized organisation
  • up to 50% if you are a large organisation


To lead a project your organisation must:

Project team

To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

Your project must include as a lead or grant claiming partner a:

  • local or regional authority or a local or regional transport authority
  • Connected & Automated Mobility (CAM) technology provider or an infrastructure provider

Your project must:

  • start by 1 January 2023
  • end by 30 November 2023
  • carry out all project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
  • work with Department for Transport (DfT) and the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) to ensure compatibility with regulatory requirements


Innovate UK are not funding projects that:

  • are industrial research or experimental development projects
  • rely on the use of automated vehicles on public roads
  • propose the use of automated vehicle technology on rail vehicles
  • include aircraft or waterborne craft
  • are dependent on export performance
  • are dependent on domestic inputs usage

Interested in applying for this competition?

Book an appointment to speak to one of our advisors to discuss your eligibility to apply for this Grant Funding opportunity.