Electric utility vehicle developer and distributor Tropos Motors has established a dealer network to sell and service the low-speed, all-electric ABLE chassis and the specialty work bodies it is developing for its emissions-free utility vehicle.
It will use First Priority Green Fleet, which specializes in ambulance, fire and other specialty vehicle sales and service. First Priority has locations in California, New Jersey and North Carolina. Tropos also has signed Turf & Industrial Equipment Co., based in Santa Clara, Calif., to serve Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area.
Morgan Hill, Calif.-based Tropos, formerly Tropos Enterprises, recently expanded from importing and assembling a low-speed electric utility vehicle from China to developing and manufacturing its own low-speed utility vehicle and specialty bodies for it and the Chinese-made utility vehicle, Tropos Chief Executive John Bautista told Trucks.com in an interview prior to the ACT Expo conference in Long Beach, Calif.
The dealer chains have a large pool of customers and “a wealth of experience selling electric vehicles,” Bautista said.
“We are always looking for new, high-quality vehicles to deliver to our customers,” said Alex Cherepakhov, First Priority’s chief executive. Tropos’ ABLE chassis and work packages are “an ideal match” for many of those customers, he said.
Tropos unveiled its latest packages, a closed ambulance-like medical response body and a street sweeper body, in April, adding to a line that includes a medical emergency response package and a fire response body,
Zero-emissions compact electric utility vehicles are designed for operation in warehouses and other large buildings or outdoors on closed-campus sites such as schools, parks or industrial and commercial complexes.
They are limited to a top speed of 35 mph in most states. The Tropos ABLE has a range of up to 120 miles, depending on speed, terrain and cargo load. Payload capacity is 1,200 pounds, and the tow rating is 2,000 pounds.
The compact ABLE chassis has a closed cabin for the driver, a 12.5-foot turning radius for maneuverability and can operate on sidewalks and other narrow paths, including warehouse aisles, Bautista said. It can operate inside large buildings because its electric drive system is emissions free.
The new sweeper package can hold up to 2 cubic yards of sweepings and includes a clean air blower to permit the operator to remove debris from curbs and gutters.
The ambulance-like medical unit is enclosed to protect patients and crew. Tropos also has an open-body medical response unit. Both can carry one patient on a stretcher, along with one attendant on a multi-position seat. The units have lockable compartments for medical equipment.
The fire package includes a 125-gallon tank and on-board pumping system, hose reel and Class A fire-retarding foam spray system, as well as connections that enable it to dispense water directly from stand pipes.
Tropos is developing a proprietary electric work vehicle chassis and continues to import and assemble the Metro chassis imported from China by New Jersey-based Cenntro Automotive Corp.
Tropos has rebranded the Metro as the ABLE and will continue to distribute it with Tropos-developed work packages as it develops its own chassis, Bautista said.
The original work packages available with the Metro — now ABLE — chassis are a base flatbed with pickup bed and box truck options.