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ALTe Reveals Converted Ford F-150 Range Extended Electric Vehicle Demonstrator at NTEA Show

12 March 2010

F150reep
Under the hood of the F-150 REEP. Click to enlarge.

Michigan-based electric powertrain company ALTe LLC (earlier post) revealed its demonstrator Ford F-150 range-extended electric vehicle conversion at the 2010 National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA) Work Truck Show and Green Truck Summit. ALTe is developing light- and medium-duty series plug-in hybrid electric vehicle powertrain systems—initially as conversions, but ultimately extending to an OEM basis.

Production-intent specs for the powertrain in the F-150 REEP (range-extended electric powertrain) include a Ford 2.0L, 4-cylinder normally aspirated gasoline engine powering an 82 kW (peak) Remy DC generator. Two 82 kW (peak) Remy DC drive motors running at 320V deliver 400 N·m (295 lb-ft) max torque, while a 25 kWh battery pack using Li-ion manganese oxide polymer cells provides the energy storage.

The battery pack was assembled into a saddlebag configuration under the truck bed. The F-150 REEP offers a total range of 469 miles (755 kilometers), with a 52-mile (84-kilometer) all-electric range. Fuel economy in charge sustaining mode is 32 mpg US (7.35 L/100km).

The entire range-extended electric system adds approximately 200 lbs (91 kg) to the net vehicle weight, says ALTe CEO John Thomas, adding that the F-150 REEP equals or exceeds the performance of the 4.6L V8 Ford powertrain originally installed in the vehicle. The converted pickup has a towing capacity of 6,500 lbs (2,948 kg).

F150reep2
  F150reep3
Elements of the ALTe powertrain, and the powertrain in the chassis. Click to enlarge.

In terms of business prospects, Thomas says that ALTe is in discussions with several major OEMs at the Chairman and CEO level as a result of introductions by ALTe Board members Tom LaSorda (former Chrysler Group President and CEO) and Steven Landry (former Chrysler EVP of North American Sales and Marketing and Global Service and Parts). The company is also in discussions with a major retail chain that is interested in becoming ALTe’s nationwide installation center partner, according to Thomas.

At the end of the day, we might be the firm that offers Freightliner, other OEMs and their customers the REEP solution to compliment the current BEV product offerings in the field.

—John Thomas

(Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) presented the preproduction plug-in all-electric walk-in van (WIV) chassis at the NTEA show. Earlier post.)

March 12, 2010 in Conversions, Electric (Battery), Hybrids, Plug-ins | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

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This is a good demonstration of Ian Wright's idea that the best vehicles to make into hybrids are the heavy ones. The ZEBRA battery would have been better for this vehicle. ..HG..

This is essentially what Andy Frank @ UC Davis has been doing for 20 years, a small efficient engine in a series hybrid dirvetrain with a modest battery. Makes great economic sense.

Hybrid or electric vehicles can claim to be "green" when they can deliver significant real world improvement in fuel economy. OEM's are going to resist this powertrain on marketing grounds, they don't think Bubba the pickup buyer would consider a full size pickup unless it has a V-8. Businesses on the other hand could care less what's under the hood, they will go with the bottom line. This company's taxi cab conversion cost $25,000 which is a huge barrier; they are going to have to get the cost down.

This vehicle does deliver significant real world improvement in fuel economy.
Yes, OEM's are still going to resist this powertrain on marketing grounds, they think neither Bubba the pickup buyer nor Leslie the green arts major would consider spending upwards of $35,000 extra for a full size pickup even if flowers came out the tail pipe.
Businesses likewise could care less what's under the hood or out the tail pipe, they will look at that terrible bottom line
- that's the huge barrier.

The US Gov't claims 16 MPG combined for the 2010 F150.

52 miles AER would cover most driving for most drivers. Fuel savings over a vehicle lifespan of 150,000 miles could be nearly 10,000 gallons. At current prices, that's $25000 or so; at 2008 peak prices (which we may see again), that's over $40,000. Electricity costs are probably in the range of 5 cents per mile, roughly what a Prius pays for gas.

Tom LaSorda (former Chrysler Group President and CEO) and Steven Landry (former Chrysler EVP of North American Sales and Marketing and Global Service and Parts)

These are a couple of car guys doing what few others are doing. If the application says that you need a truck bed but your fleet cost for fuel is adding up, now you have an alternative.

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