Published on February 4th, 2020 | by Kyle Field0
Tropos Motors Makes A Splash At CES With New Last-Mile Electric Delivery Solution
February 4th, 2020 by Kyle Field
Tropos Motors blasted in to CES this year with Panasonic, showcasing a new last mile delivery vehicle and a compact yet capable fully electric fire truck. Both vehicles started with Tropos Motors’ ABLE electric truck platform, showcasing the flexibility and capability of the foundational electric truck platform.
One Cool Solution
The new last-mile delivery solution is an attachment to Tropos Motors’ ABLE compact electric truck that was developed in partnership with Panasonic subsidiary Hussmann to provide customers with an efficient, fully electric refrigerated or warmed product delivery solution. It is aimed at providing warmed or cooled food delivery to small grocery stores as a last mile solution and was designed for maximum efficiency.
The attachment was built with cooler-sized compartments that have been fitted with Hussman’s RADBD Vacuum Insulation Panel (VIP) coolers. The company says these coolers stay 13 times colder than typical polyurethane (PU) coolers for maximum efficiency. At the same time, the walls of the coolers are thinner than comparable PU coolers, allowing for even more groceries to be stored.
The attachment was designed to leverage the insulation of each cooler, enabling refrigerating or heating for each cooler individually. That has the potential to provide a significant improvement in the energy required to refrigerate and cool loads over traditional cargo trucks that require the entire cargo box to be cooled. “Our VIP insulation technology helps save in multiple ways — overall cost and clean energy as there is less need for cooling from compression devices,” said Panasonic Industrial Devices president Jeff Howell. “A win-win on two fronts and a game changer in smaller cool chain deliveries.”
As the containers stay sealed from door to door, minimal thermal energy is lost en route. The new attachment for the Tropos Motors ABLE platform was initially designed as a concept in mid-2019 and has already been rolled forward into a fully formed production vehicle attachment for the vehicle.
Right-Sized Firefighting Vehicle
Tropos Motors also brought its compact-yet-capable fully electric Fire Response Vehicle (FRV) to CES to highlight what promises to be an extremely affordable firefighting vehicle. The vehicle was built around Tropos Motors’ ABLE platform, packing tons of firefighting capability into an extremely compact, zero emission platform.
That gives fire departments, businesses, facility providers, and the like a truly functional solution to bringing a new level of firefighting capability to bear for indoor fires. It’s also well suited to dense cities, where behemoth traditional firefighting rigs have difficulty navigating in traffic, let alone in structures.
Nobody is saying the vehicle is a one for one replacement for a full-sized fire truck, but it does pack an impressive amount of capability into a single, compact vehicle and it does so at a fraction of the price. Tropos estimates that its FRV comes in at about a tenth of the cost of the larger rigs that can tip the scales at upwards of $500,000 each. That’s a key differentiator for facilities that need robust firefighting capability but don’t have the budget or a need for a full-sized firefighting vehicle.
“The goal is to address the needs of businesses that depend on small commercial vehicles with a practical and efficient solution,” said John Bautista, founder and CEO of Tropos Motors. “With an ability to accommodate both large and purpose-built payloads, our vehicles are created with versatility in mind to fulfill the requirements of any corporate, first-responder, agricultural or last-mile application.”
All of Tropos Motors’ vehicles can now be equipped with Panasonic’s OneConnectSM automotive solution that brings an impressive suite of analytics and connectivity to the vehicles. It enables fleet managers and vehicle owners to view battery health and maintenance status in realtime. Tapping into the core of the vehicle with OneConnectSM gives owners unprecedented predictive maintenance, driver behavior, and vehicle data into the hands of owners from just about anywhere.
Adding a robust telematics system to Tropos Motors’ ABLE platform adds an impressive number of features to the vehicles from a trusted, established brand companies can build entire fleets on. On top of that, all Tropos Motors vehicles use Panasonic batteries for a combined package that is unlike anything else on the market.
OneConnectSM lets owners tap into their vehicles to build a custom set of functionality to focus on vehicle data, to improve battery efficiency with different algorithms, or to keep a finger on the pulse of the return on the investment over the life of the vehicle.
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