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They don't like the term "skateboard" but it's a skateboard:


I expect it will be wildly expensive, but still...pretty damn sweet if it delivers. I gotta wonder if the plan is more than just cutting a Bronco shell to pieces to get it to fit or what. I would love love a 4x4 EV Bronco without having to drag the transmission, transfer case, and rear diff around (or redesign the whole suspension). Similarly...an EV '69 Mustang.

It also seems like maybe they expect to build the whole car for you (for $200k) and are just showing what's under there when they're done...I'm skeptical, but fingers crossed.



 

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Yes, unlike the Tesla platforms which are often and completely incorrectly called a skateboard, this is close (although it's not completely flat across the top). All of the coming EV pickup trucks appear to use the same approach, which is just a body-on-frame with a high floor across the middle instead of allowing the floor to dip down (even between the frame rails in perimeter frames).

The platform is wide through the middle to provide battery pack volume, so any of these classic vehicle bodies designed for narrow ladder frames (including that Bronco) will not be an easy fit. They risk looking like those stupid car bodies stuck on 4X4 truck frames.

I think the bold chassis serial number of 130 in the rendering is brilliant, for a company with zero actual chassis built (based on the use of computer renderings for all images of complete chassis). If I had a company with a fleet of a handful of vehicles, I would definitely put unit numbers on the side using random 3-digit numbers to make it look like it was a big company with hundreds of vehicles :) To be fair, they might have started numbering with the first of their traditional conversions, not the first of the new platform, but there's no reason to believe that they have done more than two of those.

One of the images shows the battery exploded to show 6 modules of about 10x10 cylindrical cells each, but that could have no relationship to what is actually in the final pack, especially since the square configuration is incompatible with the clipped corners of the pack.

The features show "No oil, heavy gears, axles", "No transmission", and "No heavy gear sets". All of that implies in-wheel motors (which would in turn imply that this is not a serious proposal), but one of the images clearly shows inboard motors which would conflict with at least some of those features. I think they stuck clipped images of Tesla Model S/X large drive units and stuck it on a chassis image... with the drive units in the wrong place for axle to line up. :LOL: The video of a physical chassis (all in artsy minimal lighting) shows rotating axle shafts. They didn't even proof-read their claim text: they copied "200% more power than pre-1975 originals" and duplicated it as "400% more power than pre-1975 originals"... presumably that was supposed to be a different power level for different years, because otherwise there's no point in listing the year. All of this really makes the whole thing look like an online marketing exercise rather than a real product. Zero Labs is a real conversion company, but this platform looks like a plan rather than reality.
 

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It also seems like maybe they expect to build the whole car for you (for $200k) and are just showing what's under there when they're done...
I agree - that's clearly what they are offering, rather than platform for DIY body mounting.
 

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I had a look at Rivian mule one complete screw up on the design was that since they use PM motors not induction they cannot glide motors to gain highway efficiencies. Instead they had to add in clutch plates to remove motors from the driveline as needed. They would have been better off just using induction motors from the get go.
 

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I had a look at Rivian mule one complete screw up on the design was that since they use PM motors not induction they cannot glide motors to gain highway efficiencies. Instead they had to add in clutch plates to remove motors from the driveline as needed. They would have been better off just using induction motors from the get go.
Most AWD EV designs use PM motors for both axles; there is no need to disconnect the motor(s) at one axle on the highway. I doubt that the Rivian design uses clutches to disconnect extra motors, and even if it does they would only be needed at the end to be disconnected (presumably the front).
 

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I had a look at Rivian mule one complete screw up on the design was that since they use PM motors not induction they cannot glide motors to gain highway efficiencies. Instead they had to add in clutch plates to remove motors from the driveline as needed. They would have been better off just using induction motors from the get go.
Maybe the PM motor had other benefits which were worth the trade-off of adding the clutch? I'm guessing if they were all PM, most likely they were all from the same supplier which allowed a cheaper cost
 

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I got to tour Rivian lab the mule test vehicle a F150 was lifted off the Rivian "skateboard". I has 4 PM motors each attached independently to a wheel via a mechanical clutch system. The four separate motors allow for the skid steer type tank turn capability. The clutches were added when it was determined that for specific needs, efficiencies, torque etc, a motor should either freewheel (ie like an induction motor allows when de-powered) or via a mechanical clutch since a PM motor always has magnetic drag and cannot spin easily without this drag. It definitely had 4 mechanical clutches and I was told they would be in the final vehicle. The use of PM motors was determined to not be as advantageous as had Rivian chosen to use induction motors like a Tesla. I could provide photos but Rivian would probably not be happy with this disclosure. I doubt they troll this site but who knows.
 

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I got to tour Rivian lab the mule test vehicle a F150 was lifted off the Rivian "skateboard". I has 4 PM motors each attached independently to a wheel via a mechanical clutch system. The four separate motors allow for the skid steer type tank turn capability. The clutches were added when it was determined that for specific needs, efficiencies, torque etc, a motor should either freewheel (ie like an induction motor allows when de-powered) or via a mechanical clutch since a PM motor always has magnetic drag and cannot spin easily without this drag. It definitely had 4 mechanical clutches and I was told they would be in the final vehicle. The use of PM motors was determined to not be as advantageous as had Rivian chosen to use induction motors like a Tesla. I could provide photos but Rivian would probably not be happy with this disclosure. I doubt they troll this site but who knows.
Tesla are using PM motors now and no clutches anywhere in sight!
Four motors means four gearboxes

Why is it that every "Tesla wannabe" (like Rivian) does not seem to employ engineers to check on their marketing idiots?
 

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Works best if the marketing idiot is an engineer.

Unfortunately, they're a very rare beastie to find since most competent engineers stay put, or don't have the people and biz skills marketing requires. Mate Rimac is an example of one of these.

As an investor in Atlis, watching the engineers thrash on tech with no sense of market, cash burn, biz dev, urgency, focus, investor relations, is painful to say the least.
 
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