Octillion Power Systems and Lightning Systems have teamed up to develop electric powertrains for Class 6 electric trucks.
As I just wrote, California is on the verge of launching a pilot project to get a lot more Class 8 electric trucks on the road and evaluate their performance as well as manufacturing potential for them. This is not the only area of industrial/commercial transport in which there’s a movement toward quicker electrification. Class 6 electric trucks are next on the dock.
Octillion Power Systems, a lithium-ion battery company for electric vehicles that I have to admit I don’t recall hearing about before but seems to be quite a big player in the space, and Lightning Systems, a well established commercial vehicle electric drivetrain company we’ve covered for a few years, have teamed up to develop electric powertrains for Class 6 electric trucks (trucks up to 12½ tons).
Rather than last-mile or long-haul services, Class 6 trucks are “medium-duty trucks” that service “middle-mile” routes such as shipping between warehouses and distribution centers.
The first such truck is coming later this year. “Lightning’s electric, fuel cell-powered Class 6 truck offered by Plug Power Inc. is available beginning in the third quarter of 2020. Lightning’s all-electric version of the truck also is powered by Octillion’s batteries, which are offered in configurable energy systems of 96kWh, 128kWh, 160kWh and 192kWh.”
In general, Octillion and Lighting Systems have discovered some compatibility and mutual benefit from working together on e-mobility solutions. “Octillion also is supplying batteries for Lightning’s new mobile battery charger, which can be rapidly deployed to provide fast roadside charging to support the operation of electric fleet vehicles. The mobile charger offers the capability to recharge EVs on their routes, which allows fleets to maximize vehicle uptime.”
Here’s a bit more info on Octillion in case you are new to this notable e-mobility company: “Octillion is a Tier 1 supplier of advanced energy storage systems and electric drivetrain components. Currently, the company has more than 1 gigawatt-hour of production capacity online and in operation, and output of more than 50 megawatt-hours of battery packs per month. Twenty percent of the electric vehicles in China today are using Octillion batteries. Octillion can produce fully-functional battery-pack prototypes in under 45 days.”
Color me impressed. I’m curious to see how far Octillion and Lighting’s joint offerings get. Is this duo the Class 6 electric truck leader we’ve been waiting for to clean up the loud and polluting medium-duty trucks in our cities?