Shows TM4-Powered Chassis and HorseFly Drone in Texas
Workhorse Group – the name was officially changed from Amp last month – brought its latest E-Gen range-extended electric vehicle chassis to ACT Expo 2015, along with the HorseFly package delivery drone.
Workhorse spread the news late last month that it’s delivered the first two E-Gen trucks to “a major transportation company.” said Workhorse CEO Steve Burns said his firm is “thrilled that the electric vehicle is making deliveries to customers in the field.”
Closer to ACT Expo 2015, the Houston-Galveston Area Council is supporting the placement of 18 Workhorse trucks with UPS, with deliveries slated for later this year (F&F, December 15).
A Single Motor Saves Money
Workhorse is promoting a new e-truck design, based on the 88-inch W-88 chassis, using a single, 200-kilowatt Sumo brand motor, from Canada’s TM4. With 2,200 nm torque, “It’s so strong it doesn’t need a transmission,” Burns says.
The one-motor design saves money, with the motor available to serve as a generator to charge the truck’s 60-kilowatt-hour, Panasonic 18650 lithium ion cell-based battery pack (the truck must sit still to charge).
Workhorse is using a 2.4-liter engine from Power Solutions International as a range-extender.
Stop the Truck to Charge
“The engine’s only going to come on at rare times,” Burns adds, as he expects the E-Gen truck to be able to complete most work days on a single charge. Range is stated at 60 miles. Burns says that if a driver needs a boost, the truck can be left in charge mode for a minute or two at a time at package delivery stops, to get through the day.
The PSI engine may be fueled by gasoline, CNG or propane autogas.
The former Amp purchased the Workhorse name – and a 200,000-square-foot factory in Union City, Ind. – from Navistar International for $5 million in early 2013 (F&F, March 20, 2013).
‘An Intriguing Part of the Future’
The HorseFly drone, integrated with a Workhorse delivery truck, may help the company as it vies for a huge piece of business with the U.S. Postal Service.
The Post Office has included Workhorse/Amp among 15 companies that will receive RFPs for a huge vehicle buy: approximately 180,000 vehicles, costing $25,000 to $35,000 apiece, to replace the current aging fleet, with deliveries commencing in late 2017 or early 2018 and running as long as seven years (F&F, April 27).
It’s “the largest one-time purchase of vehicles in the history of the world,” said Burns. The Post Office has said it wants its new vehicles, which are to last 20 years, to accommodate future delivery trends. “The HorseFly is an intriguing part of the future,” Burns says.
The next ACT Expo has been scheduled for May 2-5, 2016 at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, Calif.
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Source: Workhorse and Fleets & Fuels at ACT Expo 2015 in Dallas