Adaptive battery controller for all-electric chassis moves into production

Adaptive battery controller for all-electric chassis moves into production

Business news |
By Rich Pell

The Adaptive Battery Controller (ABC) allows battery packs for electric cars to be used for heavier vehicles, rather than using more expensive custom packs. Motiv has reduced the footprint of the controller to 10% of the previous size and weight to go into production on its Electric Powered Intelligent Chassis (EPIC) family of chassis.

The single biggest hurdle facing the adoption of electric zero-emissions vehicles in the commercial fleet market is up-front cost followed by limited payload/range as a close second. This is because most electric commercial vehicles today use low-volume, custom battery packs that are around twice as expensive per kilowatt-hour in comparison with the high-volume battery packs typically found in passenger cars. The battery controller is a key element in tackling this challenge says Motiv.

The EPIC chassis takes advantage of the significant cost savings afforded by installing passenger car batteries that are produced at scale and uses the ABC to simultaneously controlling multiple battery packs through a single piece of hardware. The new design also frees up space outside of the chassis frame rails, providing more space and flexibility for body builders.

“Motiv’s goal with the EPIC was to create a simple, reliable, and cost-effective all-electric chassis capable of meeting the varying needs of medium-duty fleet operators while streamlining the build process. The ABC is a key ingredient in realizing that vision,” said Jim Castelaz, founder and CEO of Motiv Power Systems.

“Unlike our legacy technology, which required an extra box per battery and took up a lot of room on the chassis frame rails, the ABC is essentially an intelligent battery junction box for up to six batteries. As a single, discrete piece of hardware, the ABC really is a game-changer and is a pioneering piece of technology for the commercial fleet market. No one else has anything like it.”

The EPIC all-electric chassis is already in use in fleet deployments in the US, having so far logged more than 350,000 miles on the road.

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