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Features Index > Towing and Towcars > Alko Electric Drive Caravan and Trailer Chassis

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Alko Electric Drive Caravan and Trailer Chassis

An exciting new innovation from Alko is an electric 48-volt drive integrated in the chassis of trailers and caravans

The range of electric towing vehicles is greatly reduced when combined with a traditional caravan or trailer – in some cases by up to 70%. This would mean a reduction in range from an average of 500 km to only about 100-150 km. Alko's exciting solution is an electric 48-volt drive integrated in the trailer chassis. This means a higher range can be supported, and there are more advantages

Watch the Alko Electric Drive Chassis Video

Less Emissions, More Range

The 48-volt drive integrated in the trailer chassis actively supports the towing vehicle and thereby increases the range – regardless of whether it is a classic combustion or electric vehicle.

X-TRA Charge Mode – Active Loading

When braking, the brake/overrun energy can be recovered by a recuperation function in X-TRA Charge Mode, which actively charges the batteries installed in the trailer chassis. This energy can be used to support the towing vehicle, thereby reducing fuel consumption.

Downhill Braking

The recuperation charging system also serves as a braking function, downhill braking when driving over mountain passes is more comfortable and more wear-resistant.

Anti-Snaking System – Torque Vectoring

An automated and sensor-supported electronic control system transmits safety data to the electric drive, which powers or decelerates the wheels individually. Sensors guarantee the shortest, situation-specific reaction times. This means that the caravan/trailer can be stabilised in dangerous situations without any action on the part of the driver. In addition, other factors such as the loading condition and environmental influences are taken into account in the analysis.

Trailer Park View Assist

Camera systems and intelligent sensors enable easy parking of the trailer or caravan.

Manoeuvring System

A manoeuvring aid is integrated into the smart electric drive negating the need for separate motormovers.

Power Source

A refrigerator, stove, air conditioning system, entertainment system and much more can be operated self-sufficiently by the energy storage unit.

Plug-In Charging

The system can be charged by plugging into mains power sources, in addition to the recuperation function whilst driving,

Smart additional functions – Connectivity

In addition, the trailer features anti-theft protection by activating an electric immobiliser, GPS tracking for location, and a readout of the trailer / chassis mileage


  Comments on this article from our visitors

    Message posted by pnefan on 20/02/2020 18:41:11Report Post Report this
Looks a good idea. But... (and I hate saying that) most new cars are now having trouble with towing weight ratios what would the weight of a trailer be with a set of lithium batteries installed
 Reply

    Message posted by navver on 20/02/2020 20:19:42Report Post Report this
Actually weight is where electric cars score heavily. The car's batteries make them heavier than the petrol or diesel versions.

It is an interesting development though and I can see it working for a trailer which is frequently used. For a caravan, used say 4 or 5 times a year, would be very expensive putting them beyond the reach of most caravanners.

Of course, you could add a steering wheel and not bother with the car.
 Reply

    Message posted by bessie500 on 21/02/2020 09:51:40Report Post Report this
I predicted this would happen 2 years ago when i saw it on a HGV trailer at the commercial vehicle show, To be fair i think its a american idea and i havent heard of it being fitted to any uk trailers, we have a fleet size of 16000 trailers and it's not on any of ours

Bessie    
 Reply

    Message posted by LlaniDavis on 21/02/2020 22:24:09Report Post Report this
In the UK this would need a rewriting of Trailer Legislation.
 Reply

    Message posted by moorlander999 on 21/02/2020 22:53:23Report Post Report this
legislation minefield !!!! The trailer, being powered , would fall into the category of being a mechanically powered vehicle , but yet is not intended or adapted to carry people.....so s not a conveyance ......

I wouldn't like to sort out the legislation for it to be able to be used on UK roads ..
 Reply

    Message posted by armtre on 08/06/2020 08:23:28Report Post Report this
The battery weight would impact upon the already pathetic user payload allowance on most caravans.
 Reply

    Message posted by Ancient Uncle on 08/06/2020 09:11:44Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by armtre on 08/6/2020
The battery weight would impact upon the already pathetic user payload allowance on most caravans.



I would suspect this is not intended to be built on existing chassis, but purpose built. Legislation could be changed to accept modern technology.

I foresee the wiring between car and caravan will put the car in control of power to the caravan wheels. Yes this would create an entirely different class of vehicle necessitating driver training. But that is progress, perhaps as revolutionary as abandoning the sedan chair?
 Reply

    Message posted by billy on 08/06/2020 11:17:39Report Post Report this
I would have thought a better idea than a powered caravan would be to carry an additional battery pack in a conventional caravan designed to carry the extra weight which could then be plugged into the car to supplement the car battery capacity.
 Reply

    Message posted by Colin21 on 08/06/2020 13:24:25Report Post Report this
Hmm, interesting. I like Billy's idea, but I also like the original concept. Yes it would require considerable modifications to current legislation, but nothing insurmountable I wouldn't think.

A powered caravan would obviously need to be linked into the car's throttle and gearbox (for reverse) and a remote control could be used to replace the need for motor-movers.
 Reply

    Message posted by billy on 08/06/2020 13:46:26Report Post Report this
Battery Suv the size of a Range Rover. Twin axle caravan just within the max legal size. Enough battery pack to take it 700miles. Should get all that under the 8.25tonne combined MAM limit. By this time pitches will include charging point. The future for well heeled caravanners. What’s not to like?
 Reply

    Message posted by armtre on 08/06/2020 15:48:37Report Post Report this
I would think that a sophisticated control system using the linear movement (displacement, rate of displacement and force) of the hitch on the caravan (currently used to apply the brakes on the caravan) could be easily designed and matched to the specific outfit (car+caravan). The caravan brakes could be electrically applied by the same control system. Reversing is already signalled to the caravan from the car.
Electric brakes are not currently permitted in Europe but are used extensively in North America.
 Reply

    Message posted by moorlander999 on 10/06/2020 23:02:32Report Post Report this
my wifes Range Rover is due to be replaced this year and we are enquiring as to the possibility of borrowing a TESLA X fitted with a tow bar to try out towing our Caravan once we can all get out properly...We had plans to purchase a new motorhome this summer and tour Europe but I dont think that will happen for a couple of years now so we will keep our caravan for the time being. I have seen videos on you tube of a TESLA X towing a large boat for several hundred miles on a charge. We dont tend to use our car once on site and rely on cycles we take with us so it would be ideal if we could use and extrications cr to tow to site then just leave it plugged in for use on those rainy days or journeys further afield ...
 Reply


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