Science

Thundertruck: a futuristic electric 4X4 equipped with large folding solar panels

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A creative consultancy called Wolfgang has laid the foundations for a new type of electric 4X4 with more than surprising features, capable of spreading wings on solar panels to recharge its batteries while providing shade.

Were you one of the people you had to care for during the first birth? Maybe you made a brioche or learned to knit? Well, the Wolfgang teams came up with the concept of an electric SUV: “When Covid-19 first arrived, people were looking for ways to occupy their time. Rather than baking bread or puzzles, we decided to design a new, state-of-the-art electric truck. While this probably doesn’t sound like traditional containment activities, our core team has worked in and around the automotive industry for the last 25 years, so this is something we were more than qualified to undertake, ”we can read in the website featuring this amazing vehicle.

The machine was modestly called the “Thundertruck” and displays an equally evocative design. Dean Block, who led the design team, says it was inspired by the Australian outback (the arid and uninhabited regions of Australia). I wanted to create an abruptly military look, but adding a futuristic touch, so that the truck “looks amazing on city roads too.” The company assembled a team of designers, sculptors, research consultants, and marketing specialists who worked on the project.

The team started from the observation that despite the abundance of electric vehicles on the market, there were few 4X4s there. Will Thundertruck see the light of day? Not likely, at least not in this version. This creative challenge is described as a “perfect opportunity for participants to show their skills and experience.” Wolfgang explains, however, “that with offices in Los Angeles, New York and access to a global team of specialists, Wolfgang has the ability to support an entire product development program. From research and strategy to the first sketches and prototypes, through advertising launch campaigns and content creation ”. But the truck’s rather surreal features may cast doubt on its ability to hit American roads in the near future.

940 horses per 2776 kg

Still, there is a good dose of creativity in there. Designed for “adventurers”, the 4X4 offers solar panels that can be deployed over the vehicle, to provide shade while recharging the vehicle for a bit while stationary. Just in case you find yourself lost in a desert. A New Atlas journalist had fun comparing it to the solar panels on the roof of his house, estimating that these 11.6 square meters of panels could, under particularly ideal conditions, produce up to 15 kW of electricity in one day. That is, the equivalent of the energy required to drive an additional 53 km. Not so useless, if you really are lost in the middle of the desert.

© Thundertruck

To use the technical specifications provided, the 4X4 could go from 0 to 96 km / h in just 3.5 seconds. Running entirely with electricity, through 180kW batteries, its total autonomy would be, according to its optimistic creators, 900 km. With “extension”, as the already rather monstrous 2,776 kg vehicle offers an extension. This removable part of the vehicle can take it from 4 to 6 wheels, offering a total of 940 horsepower and an additional battery.

Other proposals are made for the vehicle, as varied as a drop-down tent integrated into the roof, a loading ramp for bicycles, steps to facilitate loading, or even a holographic projector in the passenger compartment to display vehicle information. even if the team of this project, explicitly thought of as “fun”, is clear on the theme: “Thundertruck is not your grandfather’s truck. In fact, it’s not anyone’s truck at the moment. “

Thundertruck

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