Hummer 4x4s, which are known for their humungous power, performance, and off-road capabilities, are also seen as fossil fuel guzzlers. The H1 model consumes around 24 litres of fuel to travel 100 kilometres and emits up to 470g CO2 per kilometre. Now, there is an eco-friendly option at hand. Austrian start-up Kriesel Electric has developed the world’s first prototype electric powertrain for an existing Hummer H1 model, enabling the butch behemoth to go all electric.
The Austrian start-up was founded by three brothers – Markus Kreisel, Philipp Kreisel and Johann Kreisel. It began operations in a small garage, and started working on developing electric powertrains that could be fitted on any traditional cars. In its quest to drive green mobility, it caught attention of many backers, including Hollywood actor and former mayor of California, USA, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger, who is among the big-name backers to the start-up, previously hired Kreisel Electric for equipping his Mercedes G-class off-roader with an electric powertrain.
“Kreisel Electric electrified my G-class last winter. And now a Hummer. If Kreisel keeps it up at this pace, I will soon be able to fly here from LA in an electric airplane,” quipped Schwarzenegger.
Kriesel Electric, during the unveiling of its prototype e-Hummer, also expanded its operations by inaugurating its new facility. The new facility will have an annual production capacity of 8,000 battery packs for cars, home-storage and aviation. It will also produce and develop prototypes for carmakers and other industries.
The brothers developed the Hummer HI off-road prototype in barely two months. It is equipped with high-performance batteries from Kreisel Electric with 100 kWh capacity and two electric motors on the front and back axles, a system output of 360 kW (490 PS). The vehicle, which weighs 3,300kg, can achieve speeds of up to 120kph and has a range of about 300 kilometres.
“With our electrified prototypes, we want to show what is possible using Kreisel technology. We will certainly not mass-produce these models. But our Hummer is a powerhouse in wolf’s clothing, one that drives so quietly even the sheep are not disturbed,” said Markus Kreisel, co-founder and CEO, Kreisel Electric.
Recently, Dassault Systemes had announced that the start-up had selected the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to accelerate its business growth as industrial automotive partners increasingly seek its innovative battery systems and electric drivetrain solutions.
“OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers look to us for innovation, and we must be able to deliver on their needs while aiming to grow from a young, 70-person company founded by three brothers into a highly efficient international supplier with a fast-growing number of employees,” said Kreisel. “Through the use of Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform, we can start procurement processes earlier. This has already reduced time spent on engineering processes by one to two months.”
“The automotive industry is undergoing a seismic shift due to disruptive start-ups and commitments from governments and established manufacturers to privilege electric and hybrid vehicles in the next few decades,” said Olivier Sappin, VP, Transportation & Mobility Industry, Dassault Systemes. “The 3DEXPERIENCE platform brings value to start-ups like Kreisel Electric, which can accelerate their role in this shift by imagining new vehicle concepts and validating feasibility faster. This facilitates long-term growth as electric vehicle adoption advances.”