The column materials were prepared by Mikhail GZOVSKIY, Alexey VOROBYEV-OBUKHOV



Everyone has heard about the development of fuel cell vehicles, or at least with hybrid power plants. But this is rather a distant prospect, while in some countries you can get an electric car in quite some time. And not a tiny city "bug", but, for example, a fully functional full-size pickup truck. Like the Ford Ranger EV.

Back in the 80s, the United States launched a program to reduce emissions. It was she who forced the car companies to take up the development of electric vehicles. Ford’s first experience in this area, the 1993 Ecostar demo, has rolled over more than a million miles across landfills and treadmills. And since 1998, under the leasing terms, an “electric” pickup “Ranger EV” has been offered. A block of 39 lead batteries weighing 908 kg, which feeds on a 66-kilowatt electric motor, was placed under its floor on a special pallet. Although the car’s mileage to the next charge is small - only about 80 km, and battery charging takes about six hours, there were not so few people who wanted to get their own Ranger EV in their garage. Therefore, Ford recently decided to upgrade the car by replacing lead-acid batteries with nickel-metal hydride batteries. Their advantages over lead - twice less weight and longer service life with the same capacity. With such batteries on board, the Ranger EV is able to cover about 170 km before recharging. In addition, Ford intends to work out the latest technology for fast recharging on the updated pickup truck: it allows you to replenish up to 80% of battery capacity in 15–20 minutes. Interested in the novelty, for example, several large zoos, where they are going to use the machine not only as a delivery truck, but also for campaigning in environmental protection. So far, the “electric” “Ranger” is being acquired mainly by companies from the USA and Canada.

Technical specifications