The arrival of the first electric N-series truck on local shores marks the start of JAC Motors South Africa's local electric vehicle programme. The newcomer to the local product range, the N55 EV, is a thoroughly tested electric vehicle from the JAC Motors stable with the latest EV technology on board.
JAC Motors is a prolific producer of electric vehicles and has been manufacturing battery-electric trucks in China since 2014, with years of research and development preceding the introduction of its first electric truck. Today, the company's range of electric truck platforms operates across the globe, ranging from 2.5 to 12 tonnes, offering flexible weight and wheelbase options to suit particular tasks on the same vehicle frame.
The company's vision is a zero-emission future for JAC trucks, focusing on efficient, cost-effective electric trucks. The new N55 EV is an excellent example of the company's drive to offer unique mobility solutions to customers who demand low running costs and reliability while minimising the impact on the environment.
The new N55 EV, first launched in China in 2019, shows the deep well of expertise JAC Motors can draw on as it sets a path to a zero-emission future. The local introduction of the N55 EV is helping the automaker to develop new markets and explore solutions for maximising the energy efficiency and the driving ranges of its electric vehicles.
These local initiatives align with JAC Motors' philosophy of refining and improving its electric truck offerings to continuously search for efficient transport solutions that will reduce the impact on the environment and enable customers to support the global Green Transport strategy.
"We are extremely excited about this ground-breaking event for the JAC Motors brand in South Africa," says Karl-Heinz Göbel, CEO of JAC Motors South Africa. "The new N55 EV is an emission-free truck suitable for a range of city operations which provides a reliable, economical and safe solution to transport operators."
The first N55 EV in the country will be used by logistics specialists AEVERSA, whose future vision of the logistics industry includes transitioning traditional transport fleets into EV fleets that consume renewable energy.
The company's core business comprises the design, engineering, implementation, and infrastructure supply to commercial- and industrial customers to effectively roll out their electric vehicle fleet programmes.
"The N55 EV will assist us with the planning, prototyping and rolling out of precision infrastructure for the conversion to DC Fast Charging commercial fleets to accelerate imminent large scale service delivery," says Rick Franz, CEO of AEVERSA.
The N55 EV is powered by a liquid-cooled 96.77kWh capacity LFP battery. When standard European CCS2-Combo connections are used, the battery recharges to 80 per cent capacity in only one-and-a-half hours and 100 per cent in two hours. In addition, the N55 EV was subject to extensive fire- and waterproof testing to ensure the vehicle remains safe under extreme conditions.
The N55 EV reaches 200 km per charge and can scale up to 16.7 degrees with a load of 2.5-tonnes. It accelerates from 0 to 50 km/h in eight seconds and achieves a top speed of 90 km/h. Compared to conventional diesel engine trucks, the N55 EV achieves a 50 per cent lower fuel/energy cost and a 30 per cent lower maintenance cost.
The N55's ergonomically designed cab is 1 995 mm wide and provides ample space for three occupants and their gear. It also features a height- and telescopic adjustable multi-function steering wheel. An air-conditioner, electric windows, and upmarket trimming add to the driver and passengers' relaxing drive.
The N55 EV features a pedestrian warning system to keep the occupants, cargo and people using urban roads safe. In addition, it boasts JAC Motors' latest vehicle connectivity system with an 8-inch touchscreen display including Bluetooth, navigation and online music, rounding off the N55's comfortable appointments.
An Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) assists the driver in emergency braking situations, offering additional safety to occupants and keeping the load intact. The automatic transmission provides an effortless driving experience, and because of its electric powertrain features regenerative braking and an economical driving mode.
The N55 EV has a proven track record in the markets where it is sold and has demonstrated its capability to meet the diverse operational requirements of transport operators. JAC Motors' state-of-the-art fault diagnostic and vehicle monitoring and control systems are standard fitment, ensuring that the N55's health always surpasses the expectation levels of transport operators.
"The N55 EV is our first environmentally-friendly electric vehicle tested in real-world conditions on South African roads. We are evaluating electric vehicles suitable for the African market and trialling technologies that could help maximise the driving range of future electrified vehicles. As a result, we soon could see more of our electric vehicles on the local roads paving the way for a greener motoring landscape in future," says Göbel.
The new N55 EV is reliable, comfortable and safe, and guarantees a substantial reduction in operating costs, making it the perfect choice for modern-day logistic companies. The company is taking orders for the new N55 EV sold and serviced countrywide as part of JAC Motors' N-series range of trucks.
"We aim to provide customised transport solutions to our customers. Low-emission vehicles using alternative energy sources are a great addition to our local product portfolio. EV trucks are vital to reduce the emission of harmful pollutants and will also contribute to the more effective utilisation of limited natural resources for transportation," concludes Göbel.