Electrogenic, who specialise in converting classic cars to all-electric vehicles, have won an Innovate UK Sustainable Innovation Fund award to develop low-cost technology to convert Land Rovers to all-electric. They will partner with Worthy Farm, host to the Glastonbury Festival, and Cardiff University, to develop and test their green technology in a working environment.
A significant number of farmers and landowners in the UK are taking the initiative to decarbonise. Presently, no-one makes an electric four-wheel-drive equivalent to the classic Land Rover. Over the next nine months Electrogenic will be converting four Land Rovers to zero-emission electric vehicles.
The electric Land Rovers will be used at Worthy Farm doing the usual jobs, while Electrogenic capture as much data as possible. This will allow Cardiff University to build a computer model to predict how the vehicles will perform on other farms and in other environments. Electrogenic aims to help farmers and landowners towards net-zero by creating a cost-effective zero-emission solution for everyday transport.
This project will offer big benefits in helping to decarbonise land management. It also creates direct operating cost benefits with no fuel consumption when the vehicle is stationary, and vehicle maintenance reduced to just brakes and suspension. When combined with electricity from Worthy Farm’s solar and anaerobic digestion installations, the conversions are expected to lead to significant reductions in operating costs.
The vehicles will be tested throughout the winter working daily in all weather conditions. The end product will be a fully documented, cost-effective way of going all-electric off-road.
Steve Drummond, Director of Electrogenic, said: “This project has been a long time in the making and we are really excited that Innovate UK has helped make it happen. Worthy Farm is a pioneer in finding ways of achieving net-zero, but to date there has been no solution to emissions in every-day farm transport. The Electrogenic concept is not only to cut out the diesel emissions but to avoid the entrained emissions of building a whole new vehicle. Even the batteries are recycled.
“Electrogenic’s proprietary technology will enable remote monitoring of the vehicles in the field and inform the Cardiff University performance analysis. The vehicles will be tested throughout the winter, working every day in the worst that the weather can throw at them, so we are looking forward to a lot of good, clean fun.”
Dr Ian Campbell, Innovate UK Executive Chair, said: “In these difficult times we have seen the best of British business innovation. The pandemic is not just a health emergency but one that impacts society and the economy.
“Electrogenic, along with every initiative Innovate UK has supported through this fund, is an important step forward in driving sustainable economic development. Each one is also helping to realise the ambitions of hard-working people.”