Mar 14, 2013
Metair unveils electric vehicle concept showcasing its battery technologyBack
Africa|Components|Design|Management And Associates|PROJECT|Projects|Technology|transport|Africa|South Africa|Automotive|Automotive Component Manufacturer|Electric Car|Equipment|Homebuilt Electric Car|Manufacturing|Start/stop Battery Technology|Louis Denner|Power|Theo Loock|Joule|Start/Stop Battery Technology
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The R60 000 includes all the components of the car should it be produced on a large scale and excludes labour. Development costs of the vehicle amounted to R500 000.
Also, the “fun project”, as Metair referred to the venture, set out to use the company’s proprietary start/stop battery technology as its fundamental power source and aimed to incorporate the skills, equipment and other technologies housed across the group’s subsidiary companies in South Africa.
The project delivered two vehicles. One was a retro-fit to an old vehicle, while the other was designed and built from scratch.
Smiths Plastics & Automold was responsible for the retrofit vehicle.
“We did not do it to exploit commercial opportunities. We achieved all our goals within a precise time period and without impacting on any employee’s day-to-day responsibilities. Management and associates from across the group worked together to design and build the vehicles using different and complementary technologies, housed across a number of our subsidiary companies.”
It also showed that a locally built range-extended lead-acid hybrid vehicle was an economically viable and practical solution to the growing demand for low-emission transport.
Furthermore, these technologies could be adapted and scaled up to include public transport vehicles, noted Loock.
“It is a known fact that lithium-ion battery technology is the power source of choice for electrical vehicles, but using lead-acid battery technology with a range extension option is a viable, more economical alternative. The VRLA batteries can also be charged in your garage with a standard household plug, using the special high-frequency charger developed by FNB.”
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