Consortium to offer Electric Vehicles to interested Canadian companies

A group of Canadian companies today announced their intention to form a consortium to help advance electric mobility in Canada. Code named "Project Eve", the consortium represents an effort by companies across Canada with key electric mobility components, such as electric motors and drive trains, battery management systems, lithium battery recycling capabilities, auxiliary power technologies, chargers, smart grid and data grid technologies, cognitive car technologies, advanced materials expertise, rapid prototyping technologies and advanced engineering and design skills to bring together their technologies and improve how they work together in electric vehicles (EV’s).

Steve Dallas CEO of Toronto Electric and Nathan Armstrong President of Motive Industries co-founded Project Eve after reading the important findings published in the Roadmap for Electric Mobility for Canada, a study released earlier this year by Electric Mobility Canada in co-operation with the Government of Canada.

"Our study found that Canada lacked an industry-led initiative to bring together the considerable electric mobility skills and technologies available here", said Al Cormier, the Executive Director of Electric Mobility Canada. "If Canada is to get its fair share of the new jobs that will come from electric mobility, interested local companies must advance and improve their technologies. This consortium is a definite step in the right direction."

Project Eve’s co-founders’ direct experience in the creation of such evolutionary vehicles as the A2B and Kestrel will be invaluable in producing EV’s that can be used in the Canadian fleet environment, a key target for the industry.

"We are confident that by working together we can advance the market goals of our members. Our Fleet Program in particular represents a good opportunity for Canadian Fleet Managers to introduce EV’s into their daily activities and to learn about electric mobility directly from the people who make the technologies. This will help them make educated decisions about EV’s and their use in the Canadian environment", said Steve Dallas.

Canada, given its climate, represents a number of specific challenges for EV’s, which local companies are motivated to address together. Developing solutions to such issues as heating and cooling, road salts, range, charging and battery management can also help the members of the consortium find new markets for their products.

Initial companies involved with the planned consortium include Toronto Electric, Motive Industries of Calgary, TM4 Electrodynamic Systems of Quebec, arcx of Markham, Vecture of Vaughan, NMA of Toronto, Westward Industries of St. Francois Xavier, ENMAX Corporation of Calgary, Revolute Technologies of Calgary, Toxco of BC, and Delta-Q of BC.

"We joined this consortium because we will have a greater impact by pooling our collective resources together", said Renaud Cloutier, vice-president of Business development at TM4 Electrodynamic Systems. "As a leader in the design and production of advanced electric drive trains for the transport industry, TM4 is eager to share its know-how with key industry partners and to create value for the Canadian electric mobility industry."

"When we talk about the future of electric vehicles, it’s vital that we understand the role utilities will play and the impacts they will have on the grid," said Rob Harris, Director of Smart Grid Partnerships, ENMAX Corporation. "Initiatives such as ENMAX’s employee electric vehicle program and industry initiatives like Project Eve will result in valuable data that the industry will learn from."

In addition, the consortium has formed alliances with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto, Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and Red Deer College.

"Project EVE is exactly the kind of ambitious, cross-disciplinary initiative that Canada needs in order to rapidly establish a global leadership position in electric mobility. We look forward to participating in exciting research projects related to power electronics, battery management and advanced materials that will help to develop the next generation of Canadian EV experts", said Olivier Trescases, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto.

Project Eve is an open consortium and discussions are underway with additional participants.

Project Eve brings together Canadian skills and products for the purpose of producing and supporting key Canadian content in electric cars. The consortium intends to advance electric mobility technologies by working with Fleet Managers to design, manufacture, test, support and improve EV’s and their components for the Canadian Fleet and export environment. Other goals include reducing vehicle weight, improving safety, extending battery life, advancing charging technologies, environmental programs for EV life cycles, and designing for electric grids and data grids.