When it comes to sports cars, it’s common for little-known companies to wow the public with flashy style, even if the star of the show is under the hood.
Take Xing Mobility, a Taiwanese company that builds electric race cars and supercars. It recently released a video of its sexy Miss R all-electric supercar careening across gravel and asphalt. The ultimate use for its powertrain, however, is trucks.
A derivative of Miss R’s one-megawatt system can also power a 3.5-ton commercial transit vehicle, nicknamed Mr. T.
“Miss R is not just a toy to have fun in, but it is also an R&D platform from which Xing Mobility is able to innovate advanced electric vehicle technologies,” Royce Hong, Xing’s chief executive and co-founder, told Trucks.com.
Mr. T is a converted light-duty truck designed to showcase Xing Mobility’s lithium ion battery system and a 225kW high-power-density induction motor from Silicon Valley startup Clean Wave Technologies.
“The commercial vehicle market is primed for a conversion to electric drivetrains due to functional needs, increasing emissions requirements and public noise reduction,” said Azizi Tucker, formerly of Tesla, now chief technology officer for Xing. “However, this market is currently extremely underserved with many electric vehicle technology manufacturers focusing only on passenger vehicles.”
The Mr. T truck concept uses a Lego-like powertrain with stackable battery packs that can be customized for low- to medium-volume vehicle makers producing delivery trucks, refuse haulers and moving vans.
“Major companies like Coca-Cola, UPS, Walmart — they’re all electrifying their fleets and they all have unique requirements,” said Manoj Karwa, vice president of sales and marketing for electric drive system maker Clean Wave Technologies. “Instead of trying to buy something off the shelf, Xing has a way to do this that’s very modular.”
Xing selected Clean Wave, Karwa said, because of the advantages of the type of electric motor it makes. It’s an induction motor, not a permanent magnet motor like what’s used in most electric vehicles today.
Induction motors do not need rare earth metals, the mining of which can be bad for the environment; they’re also more compact, weigh less and cost effective, he said.