A Queensland company has become the first to build an electric vehicle from scratch in Australia.
The ACE EV Group, as first reported by the ABC, has built an all-electric van using combining flat-pack parts shipped from Asia and local ingenuity.
The flat-pack shell is used to keep costs down to make it more tempting for ordinary Australians to take up electric cars.
“What we have here is nothing like Tesla – it’s nothing like any of the other automakers,” managing director Greg McGarvie told the ABC.
The startup claims its Ace Cargo van will lower running costs by up to 85 percent and lower fleet greenhouse emissions by more than 70 percent.
The van – at a price of around $40,000 – is pitched at business clients, with ACE EV naming industries like couriering, home nursing, pathology transport, floristry and catering as ideal for using such electric vehicles.
The driving range on one charge is 150-200km with a maximum 8-hour home charging time.
The company will reportedly aim to build up capital through business sales then go for mass production to market cars to the general public.
By the end of the year, the ABC reports, the company aims to have built 100 cars, including other models – the Ace Yewt ute and the Ace Urban passenger hatchback.
In the current consumer market, full-electric vehicles are still expensive. Tesla’s cheapest car, the Model 3, comes in at AU$49,000 and it’s not even available in Australia yet.
Electric-petrol hybrid cars are more affordable, with the Toyota Corolla Hybrid coming in at about $32,000.
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