Electric truck manufacturer SEA Electric has extended its commitment to the Australian market by doubling the size of its local assembly facility for zero-emission trucks in the Melbourne suburb of Dandenong.
The company leads the world in terms of a comprehensive range of highly adaptable electric truck options. Its present plant is expanding to now cover 8,000m2 on a total site of 15,000m2. This will give SEA Electric the capacity to produce eight electric vehicles (EVs) per day, or up to 2,080 units per annum.
Founded in Australia in 2012, SEA Electric released its first electric commercial products in 2017. Last year it launched its new range of medium and heavy-duty electric cab chassis models, distributed and supported by an extensive dealership network.
This is an exciting time for the company and shows that the demand is there for medium – and heavy-weight electric goods vehicles. Not only does it provide a wider choice for logistics and commercial operators but helps with the local economy and will provide new jobs in the Dandenong area.
Tony Fairweather, SEA Electric CEO and founder, said: “Australia doesn’t need to search the world to attract EV manufacturers – SEA Electric is proud to be a global leader in commercial emobility technology, homegrown here in Victoria.
“Since launching our new range last year, we have attracted incredible interest from a wide cross-section of leading companies and government bodies, who seek to improve their environmental sustainability, despite a lack of policy and incentives to fuel growth in the sector on these shores.
SEA Electric’s existing facility has for the past year enjoyed the benefits of a 100kW rooftop solar array. This has produced 129MWh of energy to date, with 86MWh being exported back to the power grid. All told, the system has ensured that the site is approximately 60 per cent carbon positive, in other words, it produces 60 percent more energy than it consumes.
Fairweather added: “The recent change of Federal Government and the subsequent increase in EV activity, has provided SEA Electric with renewed confidence that appropriate policy and incentives may be close. There are many examples of successful policy in EV progressive countries such as the US that we should simply emulate.
“Despite Australian passenger car production wrapping up in 2017, we still have vibrant engineering, development, and manufacturing capabilities, of which we should be proud.”
As a cornerstone of the new energy ecosystem, in future, SEA Electric will utilise the batteries within vehicle-to-grid (V2G) functional trucks on-site. This is where the trucks can provide power grid stability by feeding energy back at times of peak demand or grid disruption.
The local range of SEA Electric badged trucks, the SEA 300 EV and the SEA 500 EV, are available in a range of models. These range from 4.5-tonne GVM vehicles capable of being driven on a car licence, through to 22.5-tonne three-axle rigid trucks.
Final applications for the products include dry and refrigerated freight, side, front and rear refuse trucks, tilt trays, work trucks and elevated work platforms amongst others. The company recently launched Australia’s first airport refuelling electric truck.
Last year, SEA Electric announced a partnership with Midwest Transit Equipment (MTE)have partnered to update 10,000 school buses with battery-electric power systems. This is the biggest deal of its kind to date and paves the way for a zero-emissions future for children’s transport in North America.