• Business Business

Startup’s all-electric van is driving innovation with its unique ‘closed-loop’ production system — how it differs from other EVs

“Together we can deliver upon multiple sustainability opportunities that come from fully embracing the circular economy.”

“Together we can deliver upon multiple sustainability opportunities that come from fully embracing the circular economy."

Photo Credit: WEVC

A U.K. van maker is developing an electric commercial vehicle made from recycled aluminum. 

Watt Electric Vehicle Company (WEVC) developers claim their EV will last more than 20 years after being created in a “closed-loop” production system that’s in development, per a report from Electrek. 

The eCV1 is being designed in partnership with Norwegian industrial company Hydro, which produces recycled aluminum.  

“In Hydro we have the perfect partner who can deliver very high-quality ‘greener’ aluminum products, which bring a significant reduction in embedded carbon,” WEVC CEO Neil Yates told Electrek. 

Some of the aluminum Hydro creates is made with 75% “post-consumer” scrap — rims, cans, and other products that we use and throw away.

The Watt chassis will be made with the company’s “recycled, low-carbon aluminum,” which is billed as being created via a process that’s “certified” to generate less air pollution than other methods, per Hydro.

“Our low-carbon primary aluminum is produced using renewable power in the form of wind, solar, and hydropower and hyper-efficient production process,” all per the company.

The fleet is set to include a couple types of cabs and vans, including a vehicle with a bed. The EVs are planned to reach an approximate 230-mile range (though Electrek reports a prototype range of 193 miles), per WEVC.

The maker said that the battery is “fitted directly to the primary structure.” This helps to keep the weight down while maximizing the payload, per the company website.  

A video clip of a van driving on the road, shared by Electrek, looks a little like an aluminum block on wheels. 

“Real-world testing” has started in England, and production is slated to begin in 2025. The manufacturing process for eCV1 should come with 50% less carbon pollution than other similar commercial vehicles, Electrek reports

“We also recognize that repair, reuse, and recycle philosophies demand changes in both product design, manufacturing process, and business practice, and this partnership with Hydro will also explore wider opportunities such as more sustainable closed-loop recycling during manufacture through to end-of-vehicle-life recycling options,” Yates said in the story. 

The EV market is growing in the commercial sector, with even electrified big rigs joining the highways. Tesla has an electric semi that has been spotted on highways, as well.

“Together we can deliver upon multiple sustainability opportunities that come from fully embracing the circular economy,” Yates told Electrek.

Join our free newsletter for cool news and actionable info that makes it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.

Cool Divider