An all-electric light commercial vehicle dubbed the “X1 Transformer” with 52.5kWh battery, up to claimed 354km driving range and bidirectional charging has been unveiled by South Australia-based ACE-EV.
With plans to begin first phase trials in November, AVE-EV introduced the X1 Transformer during an online event on Wednesday hosted by the Society of Automotive Engineers – Australasia (SAE-A), the Asia Pacific professional body for automotive and mobility engineering.
The X1 Transformer is one of several vehicles planned by ACE-EV, but it appears it could be the first to make it to production.
Making use of a $5 million grant received from the federal government, ACE-EV says it will use the X1 to trial an energy management platform.
“Our Advanced Australian Vehicle To Grid (AAV2G) project will deliver bi-directional transfer between vehicle, building and grid with integrated on-board energy metering,” said ACE-EV managing director and co-founder Greg McGarvie in a statement.
“The system will enable the X1 Transformer to power an entire home or business, with the vehicle battery storing energy from rooftop solar cells or from the grid,” he said.
Standard specs for the 5,090mm X1 with 3,285 wheelbase include a 90kW motor delivering 255Nm torque with a maximum speed of 90km/hr. A curb weight of 1,425kg and gross vehicle mass of 2,535 make for a 1.1 tonne payload.
Key to making the X1 Transformer an attractive proposition for businesses will be a range of modular options including long or short wheelbase, or high or low roof – which can be changed with just 15 minutes downtime.
“For busy freight companies with their major distribution centres, the X1 enables them to fit a pre-packed module straight onto its electric platform and be on its way in 15 minutes,” said McGarvie.
“One platform can carry whatever cargo module is required – van or ute, high or low roof – so it is constantly earning its keep, whatever each individual freight mission may be.”
McGarvie told The Driven that pricing has not yet been finalised but he expects it to fall around the mid-$50,000 mark.
“It can charge when the sun shines, provide night-time energy needs, supply emergency power when needed, feed back into the grid – and, of course, run the vehicle itself,” he says.
“We intend to have X1 Transformer trial vehicles on the road this November, with a view to beginning full-scale systems testing in April next year.”
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.
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