And here’s yet another promise to bring more affordable EV trucks into the fold


A Son of the Purple Sage

What’s so cool about this strategy is that the EV trucks built with this system might a tu look something like the trucks we are used to driving, instead of silly looking spaceships like the


“Mar 11, 2021
Automakers are exploring many solutions for electrifying the sort of trucks that Americans can't get enough of. In terms of conventional manufacturers, Ford is arguably out in front. Credit the already available Ford F-150 PowerBoost gasoline-electric hybrid pickup, as well as the upcoming F-150 electric. Heck, even Ram's eTorque "mild hybrid" system is a fuel-saving step in the right direction. Upstarts like Bollinger, Lordstown, Rivian, and now Canoo want a piece of the pie, too, but aren't reliant on "legacy" truck platforms. But for more traditional pickups, like the sort already running around your town as work or lifestyle vehicles, Magna has an interim solution called eBeam.

We're talking about an application for trucks with a traditional ladder-frame chassis and live rear axle. The eBeam drops right in, in theory, utilizing all the original mounts, suspension, and so forth. But there wouldn't be an input for the driveshaft, as the eBeam is an integrated e-motor axle that comes in 120- and 250-kW power ranges. Magna says one- and two-motor versions are in development, with the two-motor version offering torque vectoring across the axle. The single-motor version presumably incorporates a differential, taking the place of a conventional truck's "pumpkin."
Magna eBeam Axle 6

What's the advantage of this over, say, developing a dedicated skateboard chassis with independent rear suspension, as newer competitors are doing? The answer is traditional truck capabilities: the ride height, payload, towing, and so forth that traditional trucks provide. And the way that the aftermarket (both for personal vehicles, and say, for up-fitting commercial and recreational vehicles) interfaces with traditional truck suspension and chassis systems. Also, it should be said, it doesn't require the engineering or manufacturing of a dedicated chassis.”


Active member
Well at least all those silly space ships don't have the air resistance of a building, so you can buy less batteries. In the end, we are trying to make transportation more efficient isn't it?
And the AC lines from inverter to motor is not that great either, but it will work.

Tesla wants to do this structural battery pack, in which the battery pack will give you a strong chassis instead of requiring a strong chassis.

It is still a nice idea for retrofitting vehicles. And if you don't have a big budget for EVs but you are making these kind of classic trucks, it becomes pretty easy to move to electric with these components.
I mean with this and a batterypack that is meant to sit in between frame you could convert a car to EV over the weekend.
However, don't expect to break any records in terms of driving range.
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Well-known member
nope sorry, a stupid idea

first massive increase in unsprung weight meaning control, ride, comfort over anything but perfect road surfaces is gone
second longevity of that flexible cable, even if the one pictured is bulletproof, within a year production costs will change it
but for the hot rodder..... a cool choice or not

'39 Chev converted the correct way



Well-known member
Electric technology is ALL about BATTERIES.

No need to re engineer the package. We already do Pikes Peak Winners with electric motors. We do incredible Trophy Trucks where you could bolt on an electric motor and replace the gas tank with a battery..... and it would win.

The electric motor was invented 60 years before internal combustion engine. The London Tube was running 40 years before that first Mercedes car.

Before Henry Ford brought mass production and assembly lines to the world. Gas, Steam, Electric engines were on a pretty equal footing. Actually gas was the worst performing.

And then came Standard Oil monopolizing the industry and introducing a level of corruption never before seen.

I think globally the fossil fuel industry is done. There are people banging their heads on the wall to protect the status quo..... or their Alberta, Texas jobs. But even then, a change in energy opens MASSIVE opportunity and both Alberta and Texas have the trained technologists, engineers, even process workers to adapt and profit. Quit the head buried in the sand crying.... Just Git 'er Done.

PS, these idiotic marketing solutions will abound as technology evolves.


New member
I'll take two of the straight axle types, and one in a front-axle steerable version. Haha! 6-wheel drive!

I'll bet those axles ain't cheap. And, speaking of $$ . . .

How much battery would be needed for my (electrified) rig for a decent range between charges?

My rig has a 7.5L gasoline injection otto-cycle heat engine. 100+ year-old tech, but there's no replacement for displacement! Gets about 10 MPG if I take it easy. About 80 gal. fuel capacity. Have about an 800 mile range, which pushes human endurance.

Let's say an adventure is 200+ miles away, with no gas stations. With some margin of safety, there and back. So, a range goal of 500 miles we will call reasonable for this exposition. Also, let's leave out consideration of the efficiencies of regenerative braking, as a lagniappe.

Wikipedia says that the EPA uses 33.7 kWh as the equivalent energy content of a gallon of gas. At 10 MPG, my rig consumes 3.37 kWh/mi to push itself down the road.

But the 100 yr old heat engine turns at least 75% to 80% of that into heat. Puts maybe 20% to 25% of the energy to the road. So let's say it actually takes about 0.7 kWH/mi to move things.

For a 500 mile range, I'd need 350 kWh of battery, assuming 100% motor efficiency. According to Google, The Tesla Cybertruck is planned to have a 200 kWh battery, the Tesla semi 500 kWh, so 350 kWh is achievable.

Google also coughs up about $100/kWh as a price for battery capacity, so I would have to cough up about $35,000 for the batteries.

Charging efficiency is about 85%, so for a full charge I'd need to consume about 400 kWh from the mains. With a high-capacity 50 kW rapid charger that would take about 8 hours to charge - but you'd better not treat your batteries like that if you want them to last.

RV parks have 30 and 50 amp service, practically 3.6 kW and 6 kW if the park's wiring is up to code. So for an 8-hour stay, that means a charge of 28.8 or 48 kWh. Assuming high efficiencies, that's maybe 40 to 70 miles per day.

So a cross-country road trip strategy might be to leave home with a full charge, and plan to spend time at RV parks as a way to make it between high-capacity charging stations.

Hmm. Doable. For someone with serious money. And time. How much do those axles cost? Let's hope the price of electrical power storage falls!

- Hellwinger


New member
Actually, billiebob is correct about unsprung weight and wire fatigue being a concern. Although probably less so for my rig considering the overall mass of 7 tons and the relatively low compliance of the suspension. An optimum way to electrify my rig could be to mount motors to short drive shafts, one for each axle. As is, my rig has an un-driven tag axle - it's only a 4x6. So a motor behind the front axle, in front of the middle axle, replace the (trailer) tag axle with a stock differential axle and put the third motor behind that. If we are going really fancy, the tag axle could even be a (castering) front steering axle (that somehow locks for reverse?). But that would be showing off.


Active member
I see something like this as still a great opportunity for retrofits, given that you could presumably put batteries in place of the engine, and somehow get the weight balance correct again.

Take my F100 for example. Yes, we put tons of town miles and close by town miles on it a year, but normally not many on the highway. So a couple hundred mile range would suit 90% of the driving it sees. With a system like this you could get rid of a lot of maintenance headache. And it would not require any change to the chassis really.

I hope there are lots of retrofit options in the future along this vein. I love my vehicles, and I would not mind it one bit if I could convert them to electric and keep using them as long as I can.