In March 2013, Forsite Development launched ReVenture Park, a 667 acre location of a former chemical die complex near Mt. Holly NC. The land was previously deemed contaminated enough to be placed under federal Superfund for cleanup in 1983. Forsite Development succeeded in having the property accepted into the NC Brownfields Program. This program allowed new occupants to operate without being held responsible for previous contamination.
Another aspect of the ReVenture Park project is to be able to offer incentives to green startups. The complex has an abundance of inexpensive industrial space available to emerging green-energy companies.
One such company is EV-Fleet Inc.
InsideEVs met with Regional Sales Manager, Stewart Mallard and CEO/Engineer Brooks Agnew, who shared the following. EV- Fleet Inc (EVFI) is currently taking orders for their MY2105 Condor light weight BEV truck. EVFI will launch to the public on September 18, 2014 at Optima Engineering by invitation in Charlotte North Carolina.
Initially EV-Fleet has the capacity to manufacture 15 trucks per day or 300 per month. EVFI will first launch in North Carolina, home of their assembly facility.
The Condor is a purpose built 300Ah (50kWh) BEV truck. It is roughly the size of a Ford Ranger, will have a 1000 pound load capacity, and a range of more than 100 miles between charges. (Although not yet EPA rated, with a 50 kWh battery this should be easily achieved.) The Condor fits in the half ton class.
InsideEVs toured their assembly facility and noted the following points of interest:
Multi speed transmission: The Condor is outfitted with a robust five speed transmission. The combination of a 50kWh battery and a 1,000 lb load capacity changes the dynamics known to most of the EV world. Agnew noted that this transmission was selected due to the large diameter shaft. Agnew stated with a chuckle, "We have tried to destroy it and just could not. Beyond the bench tests, our guys were popping wheelies in the test area and we just could not make it fail."
Multi-cell battery design: Most are aware that BEVs are a deep cycle application. Though it is common to only use a portion of the battery, in doing so, the outer battery cells accumulate more wear. EV-Fleet has included as part of their fleet service a rotation of the cells to extend the life of the batteries. We found this proactive approach to extending battery life both simple and ingenious.
Sleek Aerodynamic design: It is hard not to immediately notice the aerodynamics of this truck. Agnew proudly declared "The Condor focused on a goal of zero waste from electrical or mechanical drag. We have the best coasting values in the industry by far, and I think we have the longest distance at zero throttle coasting. " More on the CD (drag coefficients) to follow. The numbers will not be released before the September 18th launch, but they promise to excite. InsideEVs will deliver a complete article on the numbers with a technical breakdown from Brooks Agnew.
Insulated Cab: It's about the energy! Some manufacturers have gone to great lengths to shed weight to improve efficiencies. One thing the ICE will always do better is heat the cabin due to the fact that heat is a bi-product of the inefficiency of the energy transfer. The heating of the cabin is an ongoing evolution for EVs. The Condor has an over-engineered steel frame and a molded fiberglass body design opposed to a metal stamping. The molded frame is further coated with a foam that has close to an R11 rating. What a brilliant approach to conserving energy.
Independant suspension: The Condor is equipped with four wheel independent suspension that offers one of the largest ground clearance in its class. This clearance is also adjustable by the customer. Suspension is accompanied with four wheel disc brakes. Independent suspension and the highest ground clearance in its class. This feature will not only be attractive to fleets but should also be a hit with the general public as well, who also can purchase the Condor.
Total Telemetry Program: This Navigation program is currently being designed and tested by EVFI. The total telemetry program will allow fleet managers to control speeds based on area speed limits as well as other energy consuming practices. InsideEVs asked Agnew how this was received. His response was that fleet managers were about costs, and this was a welcomed tool by fleet managers.
- Length: 191 inches overall
- Width: 61 inches body width
- Wheelbase: 127 inches
- Wheel Track: (on center) 54 inches
- Bed Length: 99 inches
- Bed Width: 52 inches flat
- Front: 1,255 lbs (no occupants)
- Rear: 1,515 lbs dry
- Total Distributed Weight: 2,770 lbs
- Gross vehicle Weight: 4,070 lbs (Two Occupants)
- Ground clearance 10 inches (adjustable)
- Four Wheel disc brakes
- Four Wheel Independent coil-over shocks (adjustable)
- Rear Wheel Drive
- 5-speed manual transmission
- Rack-&-Pinion Steering
- Fully Adjustable ride height
- 0-60 MPH: 5-12 seconds (programmable)
- Battery Pack Size: 32kWh or 50kWh
- Top Speed: in excess of 85 MPH (programmable)
- Stopping: 4-Wheel Disc Brakes 60MPH-0 in 113 Feet (empty)
- Maximum Grade: 10% grade at highway speed. 20% grade at low speed.
- Maximum Recommended Payload: 1,000 lbs
- Maximum Towing Weight: 1,000 lbs (limited to 45 MPH)
- 120 VAC outlet: 14 hours
- 240 VAC outlet: 20 amps=8 Hours
- J1772 AC Power 30-Amp Source: 4.5 Hours
- DC Power 50-Amp Source: 2.5 Hours
- DC Power 90-Amp Source: Less than 1 Hour
- 45 MPH: 140 miles
- 55 MPH: 115 miles
- 65 MPH: 100 miles
- Daily Range (opportunity charging): 200 miles
- Daily Range (end-of-day charging): 120 miles*
- Minimum Temperature to Charge: -25 F (with cold weather package)^ Power usage will vary depending upon driving style. Repeated rapid acceleration will increase cost to operate. *Standard Built-in Solar panels add up to 20 miles of driving without charging from external sources. Built-in Solar Power Station Package adds up to 100 miles of driving without external sources.
- Batteries: 2-year replacement, 8-year prorated unlimited mileage (typical 3,000 cycles)
- Body and chassis: 3 years unlimited mileage parts and labor
- Drivetrain: 10 years unlimited mileage
- Extended Warranty: unlimited mileage, lifetime drivetrain warranty
PRICING AND OPTIONS
The Condor is a universal cab and chassis system. The base MSRP is scheduled to be $49,995 before rebates and incentives for the 300Ah (50kWh) battery option. The 200Ah (30kWh) battery is also available at a reduced price.
- Cargo Box: medium or tall, dry, chilled, or frozen.
- Extended Solar, or Solar Power Station with up to 3kW of continuous power to run tools and equipment all day without batteries.
- Navigation Package: Allows Fleet managers to control speed, territory, and routing via the TTP (Total Telemetry Program).
- Premium Wheels and Tires
- Tri-Fold tailgates
- Towing Package: Allows towing of loads less than 1,000 pounds with electric trailer brakes.
- Premium Interior Trim Package: Carpet, upgraded seats, Bluetooth stereo
- On Site Training Plan for fleet managers
- All EVFI vehicles are compatible with V2G technology
- AC standard
EVFI has also succeeded in getting the North Carolina state government to wave the $100 EV road tax as a show of support for local manufacturing. The EV community has long awaited a purpose built BEV truck. The sleek aerodynamic design, 50kWh battery, independent suspension, and adjustable ground clearance is sure to please. So to the EV-Fleet Inc. slogan, "No Grease, Just Lightning", we get it and we want it!