A new startup from California backed by FDG Electric Vehicles of Hong Kong has announced that this year, it will launch an all-electric commercial van with a range of 100 miles per charge and a cargo capacity of 6,000 pounds. Called Chanje, the company is headed by CEO Bryan Hansel. The rest of its executive panel includes individuals from various automakers including Tesla, Daimler, Volkswagen Group, Ford, and General Motors. Electrek also noted that two members of its executive panel, Joerg Sommer and James Chen, were at Faraday Future. In total, FDG Electric Vehicles and other partners have contributed $1 billion to help bring the commercial van called the V8070 to the market. This makes Chanje the latest Chinese-backed electric vehicle startup after Faraday Future and Lucid.
Hansel believes that electric vans will become common in the near future and believes that Chanje has an opportunity to meet the demands of commercial vehicle operators and fleets looking for electric vehicles. Additionally, he continues by stating that all-electric commercial vehicles have the largest emissions reduction potential since they’ll be used in urban centers. The startup also aims to help its clients transition to renewable energy smoothly by providing them with a microgrid depot that should help create charging infrastructures and grid services. It also plans to manufacture the V8070 in the U.S. and noted that it’s looking at west coast states, particularly areas with ports.
The V8070 commercial van will be the first of a full range of EVs that Chanje will introduce and all will ride on a single platform. Additional body styles include all-electric buses and large trucks in different lengths and capacities for use specifically in urban areas. Chanje says that its ground-up EV designs will allow operators to see a 70 percent drop in maintenance costs and fuel cost savings. Inside, Chanje’s vehicles will have cabins have apps that report operating costs and energy consumption. All of the apps and management features will be accessed via the touchscreen.
Chanje won’t be the only one producing commercial EVs because Tesla has revealed it has plans for all-electric semi-trucks and wants to test autonomous ones in Nevada.