|The ALTe system converts conventional light-duty trucks into a range-extended electric vehicle. Click to enlarge.|
ALTe, the developer of a range-extended electric powertrain used to repower light commercial vehicles, is collaborating with Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) to help validate the ALTe powertrain for the fleet industry.
Under the agreement, ALTe will retrofit one of PG&E’s 2007 Ford F-150 trucks with a version of its plug-in series electric hybrid powertrain. (Earlier post.) PG&E will evaluate the performance of the initial ALTe powered truck and provide data and feedback to ALTe.
A major initiative in our operation today is to electrify our fleet, and by doing so use clean energy to power clean vehicles. This project supports our efforts in that area and will continue to show PG&E’s commitment to the environment and to the citizens of California. If successful, the technology could ultimately be applied to a large number of vehicles and applications within our fleet of trucks and vans.—Dave Meisel, PG&E’s Director of Transportation Services
The ALTe powertrain will include a 20 kWh lithium ion battery pack, a four-cylinder engine, Remy electric motors and proprietary communication interface modules. The powertrain is projected to provide an initial 30 miles (48 km) of driving in an all-electric mode powered directly from the lithium-ion battery pack. The vehicle can then drive an estimated additional 270 miles in a charge sustained mode before the vehicle would need to be either refueled or plugged in.
The battery pack can be charged within an eight-hour timeframe from a 110-volt outlet or in about four hours from a 220-volt outlet. Fuel economy is projected to increase by up to 200% with no loss in cargo capacity, increased torque, and similar horsepower and towing capability compared with the original V8 engine.
The ALTe powertrain is being targeted to the light truck market (full size pickups and vans) with a focus on commercial, government and utility fleets. ALTe is projected to start installing its electric powertrain systems in summer 2012 with the company beginning to accept purchase orders at the end of the 2011.