Battery manufacturer Romeo Power and converter Wrightspeed have joined forces in the USA to develop and offer conversion kits for the electrification of existing buses and medium- and heavy-duty trucks.
The “Powertrain in a Crate” kits will combine electric drive systems from Wrightspeed with battery packs from Romeo Power, according to Romeo. The battery packs will be manufactured at Romeo Power’s new facility in Cypress, California, starting this year.
The rest of the “Powertrain in a Crate” solution will be assembled at Wrightspeed’s plant in Alameda, California. These are to be developed specifically for the chassis. The complete system will then be delivered to local workshops, which will then install it in the vehicles. In some cases, operators of truck or school bus fleets will also be able to do this in their own factories.
According to both companies, there are over one million buses and trucks in the US that are “candidates” for conversion to electric drives – at “much lower upfront cost than purchasing new battery electric vehicles”. Technical specifications of the conversion solution are not given in the statement.
“Romeo Power’s advanced electrification solutions for complex commercial vehicle applications is a perfect fit for our Route powertrain system,” says Wrightspeed acting CEO Alan Dowdell. “We are particularly impressed by their high level of safety, packaging density, and modularity.” Together, he said, they aim to set “a new standard in performance and efficiency for electric buses and trucks”. “We are as excited about Wrightspeed’s technology and business model as we are about our new partnership,” says Susan Brennan, CEO of Romeo.
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