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Sunday August 13, 2017 – Workhorse Trucks – Workhorse is the manufacturer of range extended electric step vans. They have sold these vans to customers like Alpha Baking, Fed Ex and Brinks. The step vans use the popular Morgan Olsen step van body mounted on a Workhorse chassis with their electric power train and a BMW range extender gas engine. They are now in the process of introducing a range extended pick-up truck, the Workhorse W-15.
While they already have orders for about 5,000 of these trucks from large fleet customers they are currently assessing if they should move into the consumer and small fleet markets. To gauge demand they have added a sign-up button on their website that will allow you get in the queue to be notified if they decide to move forward with the consumer version. There is no commitment when signing up so if you are interested the URL is http://workhorse.com/pickup/.
The Workhorse W-15 is a crew cab pick-up truck that will seat 5 people and weighs in at 7,200 lbs. It offers a payload capacity of 2,200 lbs. and is capable of towing 5,000 lbs. The car is driven by a battery pack made of Panasonic cells that is said to give the truck an 80 mile all electric range before the range extender kicks in. The gas motor provides unlimited range with a full tank being able to provide an about 310 miles of additional driving at an estimated 28mph highway, 32 mpg city fuel economy. Like most electric vehicles the W-15 gets lots of torque off the line allowing it to hit 60mph in just 5.5 seconds.
Workhorse started life in 2007 as a company called AMP. Originally they converted Saturn Sky roadsters to electric drive. After that they developed systems for powering larger vehicles such as the Chevy Equinox. With the appearance of cars like the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt it became apparent that converted vehicles would be difficult to sell in volume so they began to develop power trains for delivery vehicles. Working originally with Navistar, then with TRC they continued to refine their power train .
In March, 2015 they acquired the Workhorse chassis assembly plant in Union City, IN along with the Workhorse brand name. They are now manufacturing medium duty Vans in the 14,500 - 22,500 lb. GVW category at this plant.
Pick-up trucks are one of the vehicles that are missing from the currently available line of electric vehicles. In the 1997 - 2003 period we had a choice of Chevy S10E and Ford Ranger EV, but now we have no real competition for gas driven pickup trucks. If you want a pick-up truck but also want to go electric, or have a fleet as small as a single vehicle, then consider going to the Workhorse website and expressing interest.
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