One of the characteristics of the trendy city car Sion developed by Sono Motors is that it is covered with photovoltaic panels. A technology that interests Man for its eTGE electric utility vehicles.
The 2 companies have just signed a letter of intent by which they agreed ” to study the technical and economic feasibility of integrating Sono Solar technology into the eTGE electric transporter “.
Man Truck & Bus envisages 3 tracks for different and sometimes complementary operations. For the van, it would classically and only directly increase the range of action. Exactly like the Sono Sion.
On the refrigerated version, the advantage of this technology would be to embed a completely autonomous refrigeration system which does not draw its energy from the traction battery.
Equipped with a powerful air conditioning system installed at roof level, the minibus could fall between the two. The solar input would be used to cool the passenger compartment as needed, the excess being used to participate in recharging the traction pack.
Anyway, in the end, even with auxiliary equipment that would become autonomous, the kilowatt-hours gained with the photovoltaic panels placed on the bodywork would contribute to extending the number of kilometers traveled between 2 passages at a charging station.
As a first step, Man Truck & Bus wishes to collect quantified data on the potential of solar gain for its 3 configurations of the eTGE utility.
The prototypes will be produced by pooling the know-how and expertise of the 2 manufacturers.