Motiv's Argo Series trucks designed to electrify medium-duty hauling
Motiv Power Systems has announced a new Class 4-6 electric truck series that features a "futuristic cab" purpose built for EV trucking. The Argo models will drive on the company's next-generation powertrain, and are expected to hit the road by the end of 2024.
Motiv has been building commercial electric vehicles for more than 14 years, with over 2.8-million driven miles across North America under its belt. For its Argo Series medium-duty electric trucks, the company tapped into "extensive driver feedback" to design a "futuristic cab" specifically for electric trucking.
The cab will feature a weight-saving composite structure that's reported to outperform other cabs for heating and cooling. It will follow a shorter bumper-to-back approach for improved maneuverability, and the driver will sit high on heated airflow seats for "superior visibility and ergonomics compared to conventional cabs."
The Series is currently made up of two models to support Class 4 to 6 applications, including configurations for box trucks, step vans, shuttle buses, refrigerated vehicles, vocational vehicles and so on.
The standard Argo is available in five wheelbase options ranging from 178 inches to 298 in (4,521.2 - 7,569.2 mm) for an overall length starting at 22 ft (6.7 m) and maxing out at 38 ft (11.5 m). Depending on configurations, operators will be able to haul up to 15,500 lb (7,030.6 kg) of payload.
The vehicle is being built on Motiv's next-gen electric powertrain, which was announced at the end of April. The high-torque six-phase motor co-developed with Nidec will offer a top speed of 68 mph (109.4 km/h), while the 158-kWh LiFePO4 battery pack is reckoned good for up to 150 miles (241.4 km) for every 1.5 hours on fast-charge, with configurable regen braking available to potentially eke out a bit more range between plug-ins.
The wheelbase options of the Argo L model are the same as the standard model, but overall length starts at 26 ft (7.9 m) and payload capacity dips to 14,300 lb (6,486 kg) in total. This is due to a larger battery pack of 237 kWh for up to 200 miles per 2-hour quick charge.
"The market is demanding a proven solution that enables companies to confidently scale their EV vehicle fleets, which is where Motiv steps in: Argo combines our proven powertrain technology with a new driver-centric cab to deliver an unparalleled EV experience," said company CEO, Tim Krauskopf.
"In California for example, the Advanced Clean Fleet Rule is set to go into effect on January 1, 2024, and the state needs roughly 20,000 new zero emission medium-duty EVs on the road by the end of 2024. The Argo Series will help meet the growing demand of many companies waiting for an EV solution capable of supporting a wide range of applications."
The Argo Series vehicles are up for pre-order now, with prototypes expected early next year followed by delivery to customers by the end of 2024. A representative told us that it's too early to set pricing in stone at this stage – "we don't know what the entire market will look like in 2024 as we continue to want to make EVs affordable in total cost of ownership versus ICE vehicles. So Motiv hasn't priced anything, but our step-vans are selling in the $200K-$250K range and we should be able to maintain that target range."
Source: Motiv Power Systems