Mahindra and REE Automotive expect total volumes of up to 250,000 units in the coming years in both domestic and global markets
Mahindra & Mahindra has joined hands with Israel-based REE Automotive to develop new electric commercial vehicles based on the latter’s highly flexible advanced corner module and modular platform. The partnership will explore manufacturing and develop of products for not just India but also for global markets.
Technology and Manufacturing
REE Automotive’s new age modular electric architecture includes a flat board with all the critical drive components components like motor (fully sprung), drivetrain, power electronics, suspension, brakes, steering system (without inter-wheel connection), etc., packaged within the corner arch of the wheel. Each corner module is independently managed by an integrated ECU which offers drive-by-wire, steer-by-wire and brake-by-wire capabilities.
There is also AI-ready sensor in each wheel module to enable preventive maintenance. This platform is pegged to be flexible enough to adopt a wide variety of top hats, thanks to its scalable platform which can adapt any shape and size.
Mahindra’s established expertise in manufacturing and sourcing would enable the REE platform to realize profitable economies of scale. Moreover, the development process of various Mahindra electric commercial vehicles based on this platform is expected to be quick and cost effective.
The Mahindra-REE Automotive partnership will cater to 200,000-250,000 units of electric commercial vehicles based on REE’s global customer needs. This would also include Mahindra’s domestic and international volumes. Mahindra has also hinted that the partnership could lead to autonomous vehicles.
The various tophats that the REE Automotive platform could adapt include light CVs, mid-duty delivery trucks, last mile delivery, passenger cars and taxi shuttles. The platform is claimed to offer significant weight and space benefits, thanks to its simple design and flat floor board. The company claims that its architecture is 67% and 33% lighter than conventional IC-engined and electric architectures respectively.
Mahindra has not revealed any timeline for the launch of first products to be born out of this partnership. We expect the project to take a few years to field a market-ready product. The automaker would be hoping that India will improve its EV infrastructure and policies by then.
If the Mahindra electric commercial vehicles based on the REE platform meet success, we don’t see why the association could not be extended to electric cars as well. We expect the entities to provide more information about the product lineup in due course.