Commercial truck specialist Workhorse is developing a hybrid-electric pickup it plans to have on the road by 2019.
The full size crew cab features a futuristically-styled, lightweight composite body wrapped around a unique stainless steel frame.
Like the Tesla Model X, the all-wheel-drive truck has two electric motors, one at each end. They’re primarily powered by a Panasonic battery pack mounted within the frame that provides up to 80 miles of range, but a small internal combustion engine can generate electricity for longer trips, delivering up to 32 mpg along the way.
Full specifications have not been revealed, but Workhorse says it will have a 2,200 pound payload rating and that the high torque of the electric motors will give it “enhanced towing capability.” The company currently sells a range-extended hybrid delivery van that uses a two-cylinder BMW engine as a generator.
Workhorse also touts the pickup’s large front crumple zone afforded by the compact powertrain elements, which double as a trunk. A lane keeping system and automatic emergency brakes will also be included for added safety.
According to Trucks.com, Duke Energy has already ordered 500 of the trucks, which Workhorse is aiming to sell for less than $50,000 before any alternative fuel incentives are applied. It will be the first plug-in hybrid pickup offered by an original equipment manufacturer in the United States, but likely not the last.
Ford has promised to offer a hybrid version of the top-selling F-150 by 2020, and prototypes have already been spotted being tested on public roads.