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Images courtesy of Renault/Vertellus

Clean Transport

Vertellus’ EV Discovery Program Fleet Operators Can Try Out 16-18 Tonne Electric Trucks For 3 Months

UK based Vertellus is working to help the transport industry go green through energy transition and decarbonization strategies. Vertellus partners with commercial vehicle operators to find solutions that are more ecological for both the planet and their business. Vertellus says it has over 60 approved partner locations in the UK.

Transitioning from a diesel fleet to an electric fleet can be challenging for commercial vehicle operators with lots of things to consider. Programs such as Vertellus’ EV Discovery program aims to make this transition a whole lot easier for operators of commercial vehicles. Vertellus has introduced the EV Discovery Programme as part of its commitment to support businesses in accelerating a seamless transition to an electric vehicle fleet.

The EV Discovery Programme has been structured to encourage and support the introduction of electric vehicles into fleets and onto UK roads, by providing a comprehensive package including the electric trucks and  associated charging facilities. For this program, Vertellus has partnered with Zenobē, an EV fleet and battery storage specialist, as well as Renault Trucks.

The EV Discovery offer is a three-month usage based program where customers contract for a minimum of 3,000 kWh per month. The pricing for box and curtain-sider vehicles is £1.50/kWh and for refrigerator vehicles it is £1.90/kWh. Vertellus says this cost includes all the standard full contract hire services. This pricing also includes the charging infrastructure, meaning that its customers only then pay their energy provider for the electricity they use.

Zenobē will be providing a DC 60 kW solution that includes its bespoke software to manage the electric truck charging. Zenobē will also provide a 24/7 helpline and a performance guarantee. For customers with more demanding usage requirements, Vertellus, in partnership with Zenobē, can upgrade the charging infrastructure to a DC 120 kW fast charging solution that includes a 160 kWh battery storage, designed to allow the double shifting of vehicles.

The program will start with 30 electric vehicles (16-18 tonne trucks) with box, curtain-sider, and fridge bodies. The vehicles are delivered to customers as ready-to-operate vehicles together with a temporary charging solution, which can be installed on site at the vehicle base.

Speaking on the EV Discovery Programme, Nigel Baxter, Managing Director at Vertellus, said: “We understand that when it comes to switching to an EV contract hire fleet there is so much more for the business to think about than with a diesel vehicle, which is why we have designed the Discovery Programme to remove the complexity and hassle out of your energy transition, so operators can accelerate the process of reducing the carbon footprint of their fleets.”

“Introducing EVs across an entire fleet is likely to happen in stages, however, the Vertellus EV Discovery Programme solution identifies operations and sectors where this technology can work for businesses and provides operators with an opportunity to hire the electric vehicles, and therefore test the technology, in their own day-to-day environment.”

Carlos Rodrigues, Managing Director of Renault Trucks UK and Ireland, added: “Renault Trucks are delighted to be partnering with Vertellus to help deliver our ambition for a more sustainable future. Our product offering is very strong and in partnership with Vertellus and Zenobē we are providing customers with a ready-to-use solution. Vertellus delivers the first real BEV Equipment as a Service (EaaS), backed by more than 60 network locations and an infrastructure of highly qualified technicians, all ready to serve customers.”

“The Discovery Programme will help fleets throughout the UK achieve a significant reduction in carbon emissions and we look forward to working with Vertellus and supporting companies in taking the necessary steps to adopting electric vehicles.”

Nicholas Beatty, Founder Director at Zenobē, said, “We’re delighted to have been chosen to embark on this journey of decarbonisation alongside Vertellus. The commercial vehicle industry faces several unique challenges and, from our work supporting the electrification of around 50 fleets globally, we understand operator concerns around fleet running costs and demand exceeding local power constraints – and that these factors can deter operators from making the switch.”

“However, with the correct power procurement strategy combined with the use of Zenobē’s smart charging software, these barriers can be overcome. Through our partnership with Vertellus and the EV Discovery Programme we are committed to finding long-term solutions that are truly beneficial for the customer and the environment.”

Vertellus shared some scenarios on expected range for regional journeys — between towns and cities:

  • Temperature: 10°C
  • 10 tail lifts
  • 4 x 66kWh batteries (curtain-sider and dry box)
  • 4 x 66kWh or 4 x 94kWh batteries (fridge)

Images courtesy of Renault/Vertellus

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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has been fascinated with batteries since he was in primary school. As part of his High School Physics class he had to choose an elective course. He picked the renewable energy course and he has been hooked ever since. At university he continued to explore materials with applications in the energy space and ending up doing a PhD involving the study of radiation damage in High Temperature Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors. He has since transitioned to work in the Solar and Storage industry and his love for batteries has driven him to obsess about electric vehicles.


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