EV Ute

Transgrid is adding the first dual-cab 2023 LDV eT60 electric ute released in Australia to its fleet. 

Transgrid CEO, Brett Redman, was joined by Federal Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Chris Bowen, at Transgrid’s Wallgrove depot in western Sydney to launch the network giant’s electric ute trial.

“Transgrid is building a fit-for-future electricity network that will minimise climate impact and benefit millions of Australians, and we’re cognisant that those efforts must include our own backyard,” Mr Redman said.

“Our future will be powered by clean energy and this trial is part of Transgrid’s commitment to reach net zero by 2040, including eliminating all emissions from our passenger and commercial fleet by 2030.

“I’m excited to see our first electric ute hit the road, leading the way for other energy and infrastructure firms by demonstrating it’s possible to transition to a greener fleet and reduce our impact on the environment.”

Mr Bowen said it’s good to see Transgrid making this smart investment to get the first commercially available electric utes on the road for their business.

“The government is providing the policy settings we need to encourage the uptake of Electric Vehicles (EVs)– and we look forward to more businesses following Transgrid’s lead and getting bang for buck in their fleets,” Mr Bowen said. 

Each year, Transgrid’s fleet of 400 diesel commercial vehicles and 28 passenger vehicles collectively travel more than 14 million kilometres.

More than half of the passenger fleet is already fully electric or hybrid and this week Transgrid received its first 2023 LDV eT60 electric ute for the start of in-depth field testing.

Transgrid Fleet Manager, Ryan Thomas, said the New South Wales trial will put the vehicle to the test to see if it meets operational requirements on the 13,000km transmission network.

“We’ll be gauging the impacts for our people working in the field, including charging and towing requirements, so we can better understand the issues that will make the transition to electric utes as seamless as possible,” Mr Thomas said.

The LDV eT60 double-cab ute has a 130kW/310Nm electric motor and 88.5kWh battery pack.

“We expect the electric utes will deliver operational savings for Transgrid, including around a 50 per cent reduction in our fuel costs,” Mr Thomas said.

“EV servicing also has advantages, with the average EV having 20 moving parts in its drive train, while its diesel equivalent has over 2,000. When you have a fleet that covers millions of kilometres each year, these numbers are important to help keep costs down for customers.”

 Mr Redman said the trial is another example of how Transgrid is embracing innovation.

 “This is a great opportunity to look at how we work and find alternatives that support emerging technology. Just like we use aerial drone technology to inspect towers, reducing the need of our people to use heavy elevated work platforms, shifting to electric vehicles will benefit the community, our customers, and the environment,” Mr Redman said.

Feature image supplied by Transgrid

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