Saint back with electric bus
A range extended electric bus and truck chassis from a new to the industry business begins its testing programme in the UK this month. The company involved, Charge R&D Ltd, is headed by former Optare director, Glenn Saint. Taking the role of Technical Director Charge, Glenn directs a team of 40 engineers. The company has substantial financial backing from Kinetik, a new $500m/£329.67m international investment company. Based in Enstone, Oxfordshire, it claims its platform offers ‘game-changing driveline and vehicle solutions’. It has two unique propositions it believes gives it an edge over other solutions: cost and scalability. First, Charge’s product is expected to come to market at a price comparable to a conventional carbon fuel solution (excluding the battery cost) and secondly, it is designed to work in vehicles from 2.5 to 26tonnes.
A dedicated software development team is also creating advanced systems intended to deliver a highly ‘connected’ vehicle that enhances the experience of both the operator and driver. Charge intends to sell the technology it incorporates to both truck and bus makers for them to build into their own products. Glenn claims a number of manufacturers and investors from Europe and Asia had expressed their interest in the Charge technology. Some are already working together with Charge to introduce potential product offerings.
Glenn Saint said, ‘We believe there is a real opportunity for a low emission truck and bus range extended electric platform which is a revolutionary departure from current chassis design in layout and low weight, with a high degree of zero emissions capability. It will be financially attractive to operate without external incentives while offering users advanced features new to the commercial vehicle sector.’