Automotive

All-electric Bison rethinks the pickup truck

All-electric Bison rethinks th...
Bison exterior, designed by Darren McKeage, sports a bold aggressive stance
Bison exterior, designed by Darren McKeage, sports a bold aggressive stance
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Bison's interior designed by  Paul Deutchman
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Bison's interior designed by  Paul Deutchman
Bison exterior, designed by Darren McKeage, sports a bold aggressive stance
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Bison exterior, designed by Darren McKeage, sports a bold aggressive stance
The Bison is designed to accommodate the weekend warrior consumer
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The Bison is designed to accommodate the weekend warrior consumer
The Bison prototype sits on a GMC Canyon frame
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The Bison prototype sits on a GMC Canyon frame
The Bison prototype sports a 40 kWh battery pack but future models will offer both a 50 and 90 kWh options
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The Bison prototype sports a 40 kWh battery pack but future models will offer both a 50 and 90 kWh options
Engineered by good guy Nathan Armstrong, the Bison features a carbon fiber reinforced steel space frame and advanced power management systems
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Engineered by good guy Nathan Armstrong, the Bison features a carbon fiber reinforced steel space frame and advanced power management systems
Bison's off-road capabilities allow for 54% hill start and 21% hillclimb at full load.
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Bison's off-road capabilities allow for 54% hill start and 21% hillclimb at full load.
According to the Bison designer, the e-truck speaks a bold design language, punctuated with angular cladding and wedge profiles
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According to the Bison designer, the e-truck speaks a bold design language, punctuated with angular cladding and wedge profiles
The all-electric Bison could be the first e-truck to hit the market if it sees production in 2018
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The all-electric Bison could be the first e-truck to hit the market if it sees production in 2018
The Bison was brought about by a consortium of Canadian, Dutch and Chinese partners
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The Bison was brought about by a consortium of Canadian, Dutch and Chinese partners
Bison has the potential to act as a portable generator station on worksites
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Bison has the potential to act as a portable generator station on worksites
Havelaar Canada had the Bison's official unveiling at an industry event in Toronto
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Havelaar Canada had the Bison's official unveiling at an industry event in Toronto
Utilitarian cockpit sports an oversized Tesla-esque tablet in the center console
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Utilitarian cockpit sports an oversized Tesla-esque tablet in the center console
Bison runs electric motors both front and rear
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Bison runs electric motors both front and rear
View gallery - 14 images

The electric pickup market appears to be one that manufacturers arestarting to take seriously. Tesla flagged its intention to enter the market in April and Ohio-based Workhorse Group followed suit in May by announcing the range-extended electric W-15. The latest to join the fray is Canadian-basedHavelaar with its all-electric pickup called theBison.

The fully-electric Bison power train sees adual-motor (front and rear) set-up driving all four wheels with peak power of 220 kW and 510 Nm torque. Theprototype, sporting a 40 kWh battery pack, is estimated to make 60mph (96 kph) in roughly 6 seconds. Production models will be offered witheither 50 kWh or 90 kWh packs and the top speed is listed at an electronically limited 130 km/h (80 mph).

Bison runs electric motors both front and rear
Bison runs electric motors both front and rear

According to Havelaar, the higher-end 90 kWh modelshould achieve a 300 km (186 mi) plus range, with the smaller battery pack making 170 km 106 mi). Curb weight is 2375 kg and 2155 kg (5236/4750 lb) respectively, ground clearance is 0.26 m (9.8 inches) and there's 1.3 m³ (46 ft³) of exterior cargo space and 0.51 m³ (18 ft³) lockable storage.

The Bison's radically angular body is built around a high strength steel chassis with integrated composite panels designed to withstand the rugged terrain of Canadian backcountry.

"We came up with a body-on-frame monocoque hybrid system," says Havelaar Canada's VP of Engineering, Nathan Armstrong – who has worked with the likes of Aptera, Volvo and Tesla Roadster. "The build is like a traditional pickup but bolted together rigidly instead of flexibly. This gives us the ability to change out the bed and in turn achieve class leading torsional stiffness.

"The composite body construction which utilizes the latest in low volume, high tech environmentally responsible manufacturing methods. The blend, comprised of carbon and glass fibers, is used primarily in the prototype production series but will be tested in hail conditions in Canada. If successful we could have a hail-proof truck by 2020."

Armstrong also points out the Bison's double wishbone suspension and low centre of gravity helps put 95 percent of the mass below top of the tires. The result should translate into superior, flatter handling.

Utilitarian cockpit sports an oversized Tesla-esque tablet in the center console
Utilitarian cockpit sports an oversized Tesla-esque tablet in the center console

The minimalist interior is marked by an oversized Tesla-esque touch screen and an array of nine cameras provide a 360-degree view of the surroundings. One unique selling point missing from similar gas trucks is the Bison's ability to act as an onsite generator via a 120V socket located in the bed and down in the bumper.

Havelaar, which is backed by a consortium of Dutch, Chinese and Canadian partners, revealed the Bison at the EMC show in Toronto, Ontarioearlier this week. It is targeting the first 100 production models at fleet operators and municipalities with a delivery date slated for late 2020. A consumer version is expected to land follow in 2021 and the base model Bison will sell for around CAD$60,000 (US$45,000).

Source: Havelaar Canada

View gallery - 14 images
12 comments
VincentWolf
Nice but it's missing the rear seat which most truck buyers these days always opt for the crew cab--not 2 seats which is like having a sports car and you can't put the kids in the front seat!
George Strnad
I dunno why these electric car makers have to make electrics look so "soft" and "eco-friendly" and "prius-ie". I don't know the word, but, why not make a truck look like a nice truck. This thing is zany-future type, not realistic.. Few would buy this thing, and it won't replace. It's just novelty. I'm a HUGE fan of electric. but, the designs, other than Tesla, are bad. Look at Chevy, or BMW, they also have goofly looking things.
minivini
George - it's quite simple. Aerodynamics. Drag on a vehicles increases exponentially with speed, not in a linear fashion. Aerodynamic drag can easily make the difference between a 200 mile range and a 100 mile range. The more aerodynamic (Prius-y) the vehicle, the greater the range. For example, adding my Thule aero bars to my LEAF reduces range by around 20% - UNLOADED. Little things add up quickly.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
A regular pickup or van has a 4 x 8 bed for a reason. Anything else is "sport" but not "utility".
Derek Howe
Douglas Bennett Rogers - an normal truck's bed is 6 ft, a long box is 8 ft. I agree with George. I would rather the truck take a range hit and look good, then have an extra 50 miles of range while looking dumb.
Penguin
Pretty ugly alright. If a vehicle is going to be a utility vehicle why not have them look somewhat like a military vehicle?
Signguy
Since there's no engine in front what are they doing with all the space that used to take up? Couldn't they make that the new trunk?
guzmanchinky
I can't wait for an electric full size SUV that can tow my (electric) ski boat for hundreds of miles on a charge and recharges in 5 minutes. Until then I have to settle for my gas hogging Expedition, which is a great truck, but just feels so outdated these days...
Daniel Harbin
I dont see this being anything except some kind of status symbol. I come from family that wants working trucks to haul kids and heavy stuff around. In short this is not a real truck.
habakak
WTF are people talking about? This truck looks better than 95% of trucks out there, if not 99%. Besides, trucks are not about looks but about work. I guess most pretenders like to drive big ol trucks to feel more secure. But they need to get over the acceleration figures for trucks. They are not made to race, but to move heavy loads. It needs a double-cab for sure. I hope they make it to production. The day of 100 mpge pick ups and SUVs are finally arriving.