The Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule, otherwise known as RWTH University, is the largest technical school in Germany.
Last month, RWTH’s Production Technology for Electromobility Components (PEM) sector introduced what it calls a “primotype” of a new modular electric delivery van with a 7.5 ton capacity.
Designated the LiVe 1, it is based on a conventional Isuzu truck chassis with an electric drivetrain engineered by the PEM team in just 13 months. The key to the LiVe 1 is a modular powertrain that can meet the needs of a wide variety of customers.
The battery pack can be as little as 20 kWh, and up to a maximum of 200 kWh. The individual cells in the each battery pack can be replaced as needed instead of discarding an entire pack.
The focus of the LiVe 1 project is to achieve a “life cycle cost reduction in electric distribution by individually adaptable powertrain.”
Each one will keep up to 6 tons of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere each year thanks to replacing the traditional diesel engine with an electric motor.
In addition to powering the rear wheels, the electric powertrain has to provide such ancillary services as power steering, heat and air conditioning, and a compressor for the air brakes.