It has been almost a year since EV startup Atlis Motor Vehicles showed the first XT electric pickup prototype, along with an estimate that production would start in late 2022.

While the latter part seems unlikely, the company does appear to be working towards accelerating product development. In a new announcement, Atlis said it signed a collaborative agreement with ArcelorMittal, the leading producer of automotive steels, to help speed up its electric work truck project.

As part of the deal, Atlis says it will use ArcellorMittal's steel materials knowledge and S-in motion solutions to accelerate the XT's vehicle design. More specifically, the Arizona-based EV startup will use ArcelorMittal's S-in motion pickup truck model, as well as cab and box designs to help guide the design of its XT.

S-in motion is a set of lightweight steel solutions developed by ArcelorMittal for automakers who wish to create lighter, safer, and more environmentally friendly vehicles. Atlis will use ArcelorMittal's body in white CAD engineering information to reduce weight and cost, while increasing the range of the XT.

The Atlis XT is a purpose-built, fully electric pickup truck designed to support individuals and fleet owners who work in agriculture, service, utility, and construction industries.

Gallery: Atlis XT Electric Pickup Prototype

The vehicle is built on a skateboard platform consisting of two identical modular drive systems located in the front and rear of the vehicle, four traction motors, independent suspension, drive-by-wire technology and an Atlis battery pack. The latter is said to enable a driving range of up to 500 miles (805 kilometers). 

The modular system is designed to be plug-and-play, from a pickup to a box truck to a flatbed, and will enable the vehicle to be serviceable even on the side of the road.

"Our collaboration provides Atlis with designs that have been engineered and virtually homologated for vehicle crash and typical industry structural performance requirements and enable us to speed up product development. This is the latest example of how we source key technology and materials from strategic suppliers to meet the demanding performance characteristics needed in emissions-free electric work trucks."

Mark Hanchett, CEO of Atlis Motor Vehicles

Atlis XT configurations will include service body upfits, two-door or four-door, 6.5-foot (2-meter) and 8-foot (2.4-meter) beds with dual rear wheel option, and towing capabilities of 10,000 lbs (4,535 kg), 14,000 lbs (6,350 kg), and 17,000 lbs (7,711 kg)—all with a hitch. The electric pickup will target a max tow rating (GCWR) of 35,000 pounds (15,875 kilograms) with fifth wheel and gooseneck.

Drivers will also be able to choose from a 300-, 400- or 500-mile battery pack that ranges from 125 kWh up to 250 kWh capacity and will fully charge in just 15 minutes using a 1.5 MW charging station.

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