Australian company SEA Electric had revealed the latest addition to its range of all-electric machines, launching what it says is the first electric commercial bucket truck.
Formally named the Elevated Work Platform Truck (EWP), and informally known as a ‘cherry picker’, the machine has been developed by SEA Electric to add another offering to the commercial truck market.
The SEA EWP truck has been paired with enough battery storage to fully power the operation of the elevated boom, and provide over 200km of range.
Electric vehicle alternatives have become an increasingly attractive option for fleet operators, particularly those managing vehicles that are in constant daily use, as the significantly reduced fuel costs more than offset the higher upfront purchase costs, delivering savings for businesses.
“The electric EWP truck is beneficial to industries requiring mobile elevated platforms as it provides significant savings on diesel, servicing and maintenance, resulting in low total life operating costs,” SEA Electric said in a statement.
“The communities in which this truck operates appreciate its zero noise, zero emissions and zero exhaust fumes.”
The first completed all-electric cherry picker conversions will be delivered to Wel Networks in New Zealand and will be used for power line maintenance.
The design of the cherry picker truck has been undertaken by SEA’s engineering team in Melbourne, with the actual production of the electric conversion to occur in New Zealand through a partnership between SEA Electric and CAL Isuzu (Hamilton).
SEA electric specialises in the adaptation of readily available commercial vehicles and has used the Isuzu FTR chassis as the basis of the all-electric EWP truck. SEA has designed its all-electric modifications to be adapted to most cherry picker models available on the market.
The adaptation involves the addition of a 136kWh battery, delivering a peak 250kW of instantaneous power. The power system is able to deliver up to 2,500 Nm of torque and is capable of being charged to 80% within 6 hours using a 3-phase electricity supply.
SEA Electric has established a manufacturing base in Victoria and has successfully fitted all-electric drive systems to trucks from a range of manufacturers including Isuzu, Mercedes-Benz, Hinco and Iveco.
Last month, SEA Electric announced that it would commence the production of an all-electric version of the Ford F-59 van in the United States, a major step forward for the Australian company seeking to expand into a lucrative American automotive market.
In an interview with The Driven last year, SEA founder and managing director Tony Fairweather said that the company is aiming to produce up to 2,400 all-electric light commercial vehicles, as well as buses, at an assembly facility in the Latrobe Valley.
The facility is aiming to have the new assembly facility up and running by 2021.
Michael Mazengarb is a journalist with RenewEconomy, based in Sydney. Before joining RenewEconomy, Michael worked in the renewable energy sector for more than a decade.