There appears to be a rapid shift towards electrifying the bakkie segment, China is at the forefront of this movement.
China’s burgeoning commitment to vehicle electrification has gained another entrant as Dongfeng revealed its battery-powered bakkie.
Based on the Rich 6 double-cab platform this new electric bakkie has been developed in conjunction with Nissan. And yes, it does look like a facelifted Hilux from the front.
In terms of dimensions, the Rich 6 EV is a large double-cab, measuring 5.29m bumper-to-bumper, with a wheelbase of 3m. Kerb weight registers as 1 983 kg, which is remarkable for a bakkie of its size, carrying the burden of a battery pack.
Powering the Dongfeng Rich 6 EV is a single electric motor, rated at 120 kW and 420 Nm. Energy is sourced from a 68 kWh battery pack.
The Dongfeng Rich 6 EV’s performance certainly is not startling, with a top speed of only 110 kph. This comparatively low performance threshold is not an issue in China, where traffic precludes moderate highway cruising speeds.
What is deeply impressive, is the Rich 6 EV’s claimed range. Dongfeng says their battery bakkie will run 403 km on a single charge and then power-up to 80% capacity in only 45 minutes, if plugged-in at a fast-charging station.
Debits? It does not carry much. The Rich 6 EV’s load rating is a modest 490 kg.
Nissan holds a 50% share in Dongfeng and the joint venture's aim is to have 20 electric vehicles in the market by 2022.