Israeli startup REE Automotive on Tuesday released a video showing its modular skateboard EV platform in action.
The videos show three different versions of the platform, designed to underpin different types of commercial vehicles. REE previously said the platform was flexible enough for use in everything from taxis to delivery vans.
REE isn’t the first company to develop a skateboard platform, but it takes a more extreme approach than most. Virtually all mechanical components, apart from the battery pack and its associated cooling and power-distribution equipment, are housed in the wheel arches. REE announced earlier this year that it’s getting help from suspension expert KYB for this unusual setup.
Indian automaker Mahindra announced in August that it would use the REE platform for future electric commercial vehicles. Neither company has confirmed any fleet customers yet, however.
The closest comparison would be United Kingdom-based Arrival, which recently revealed a revised version of its last-mile delivery van for UPS.
And REE’s method of showing off its platform reminds us of the method recently employed by Canoo, which had a race driver jump into its platform, fitted with a rollbar.
Canoo has said it plans to use its skateboard for both passenger and commercial vehicles. Its first vehicle is a van-like electric car, offered on a subscription basis beginning in Los Angeles in 2021.
That startup has said it will develop at least four distinct vehicles off this platform, including a delivery van. It will also provide “engineering services” to Hyundai to help develop an EV for the Korean firm based on the same skateboard.