Solectrac, located in Northern California, is manufacturing battery-electric tractors for agriculture and utility operations. Those tractors make it possible for farmers to use the sun, wind, or other clean, renewable energy sources to power essential machinery. The company’s mission is to offer farmers independence from the pollution, infrastructure, and price volatility associated with fossil fuels.
In April, we reported the company has just completed a new 36,000 square foot factory in Windsor, California, which is located just north of Santa Rosa. It was purchased last year by Ideanomics, whose CEO, Alf Poor, told us, “EV tractors have proven to be superior to their diesel counterparts not only when it comes to torque and overall performance, but also when you consider operating costs, reliability, and the positive impact they have on the environment. They are also an underserved part of the market when it comes to EV initiatives. For those reasons, we are excited to bring…..the Solectrac team into the Ideanomics family.”
New Solectrac Factory In North Carolina
This week, the company announced it has created a partnership with Nolan Manufacturing to begin producing its battery-electric tractors in a 10,000 square foot facility in Denton, North Carolina, to help meet the demand for its products. That facility will manufacture the company’s Solectrac’s e25 electric tractor, with additional models planned for future production.
“As the demand for Solectrac’s electric tractors continues to increase, I’m excited about our persistent progress on the East Coast towards a more sustainable future and regenerative agriculture,” says Mani Iyer, Solectrac CEO. “With a 10,000 square foot manufacturing facility, 57 acres and three new buildings, we are ramping up production quickly and will be able to deliver tractors to dealer partners expeditiously and provide more efficient services to existing customers. As we achieve full production capacity, we are focused on making hiring and training a top priority.”
Nolan Manufacturing has over 50 dealers from Maryland to Georgia, with four equipment dealerships in North Carolina. They are producers of equipment and landscaping trailers with plans to expand production and distribution operations to include farm tractor implements, alongside the distribution of Solectrac tractors.
“It’s exciting to be in a partnership that will support Solectrac with meeting the growing demand for their tractors,” states Chris Biesecker, owner of Nolan Manufacturing. “The demand for Solectrac tractors is growing on the East Coast, and we’re proud to do our part in providing the market with the economical and environmentally friendly Solectrac tractor.” He has worked in equipment retail for over 30 years and will oversee the day-to-day operations of Solectrac production.
Currently, Solectrac manufacturers the e70N electric tractor, which is designed as a narrow vehicle for handling and easy maneuverability in vineyards and other farming operations. According to Electrive, it also makes the e25 — a versatile, 4WD utility vehicle that is perfect for hobby farms, golf courses, sport fields, equestrian centers, and municipalities — as well as the 40HP eUtility that the company says is the ideal tractor for any small farm or livestock operation, equestrian centers, or other utility type work.
Farming is one of the hardest professions there is, subject as it is to so many factors that are out of the farmer’s control. But one thing all farmers agree on is that they need to maximize their return on the money they invest in equipment in order to make a living. More farmers are finding that not only do electric farm machines have greater torque than their gasoline- or diesel-powered equivalents, they cost far less to operate and maintain. They are also more reliable than conventional tractors, which is an important factor as well.
Farmers tend to live in rural areas — the same places where electric cars are looked at with a jaundiced eye because the distances people need to travel are longer on average than in urban areas, and EV chargers tend to be few and far between. For those reasons, farmers may be reluctant to embrace the EV revolution when it comes to cars and trucks, but once they experience the advantages of electric tractors, they may be more receptive to the idea of driving an EV.
Anything that transports people or goods is part of the transportation sector and anything that reduces emissions from that sector is an important step forward in the push to prevent the Earth from overheating to the point that crops of all kinds no longer grow in traditional farming areas. A Solectrac tractor is a foot in the door to help change the perception farmers have about electric vehicles. To learn more about the Solectrac e25, check out the video below.
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