2022 - Volume #46, Issue #6, Page #38[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Truck Converted To Electric Power
Allaway says that while he and other people at the farm did the project planning, the actual conversion was carried out by a local company called Ecotuned Automobile that does mini schoolbus and vocational truck conversions, always on the Ford E and F-series chassis. “They’ve developed a fully integrated ‘bolt-in’ electric drive train that occupies the same space as the original gas engine, even using the original motor mounts and wiring harnesses,” Allaway says.
Tourne-Sol’s truck is an E450 DRW with a 16-ft. Unicell body. Allaway added airbags to the rear axle and a hydraulic liftgate and is hoping to also add a motorized awning to provide shade for a market-style sales setup. They use the truck primarily for local distribution of the farm’s CSA basket program. The 85kWh battery pack provides a range of about 100 to 150 miles. They can use Quebec’s rapidly expanding network of fast chargers (50+kW) on the road if they need to go further. The cost per km for charging is 4 to 15 cents for electricity (charge-at-home vs. fast charging), which compares favorably with the 50 cents per kilometer for the truck’s original V8 gas engine.
Allaway says the conversion project took nearly two years to complete because of global shipping holdups.
Tourne-Sol raised $23,000 for the conversion from friends and supporters through a crowd-funding campaign. Allaway says that money combined with government support for electric conversion projects means the converted vehicle cost them about the same as a new gas or diesel vehicle of similar size and configuration.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Reid Allaway, Tourne-Sol Co-operative Farm, 1025 Chemin St-Dominique, les Cedres, Quebec, Canada J7T 1P5 (ph 450-452-4271; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.fermetournesol.qc.ca; www.ecotuned.com).
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