You may have never heard of a company called Workhorse, after all, their primary job is developing electric drive systems for commercial vehicles. So unless you own a fleet of medium-duty delivery trucks, this is probably the first time you hear the name. The truck you see here is called the W-15, and it’s the newest creation from the Ohio-based company.
The Workhorse W-15 itself isn’t the truck of the future, but the idea behind it is. See, this isn’t really an electric truck, but it’s also not an internal combustion one either. It’s a PHEV truck, or to put it in simple terms, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. Under the incredibly attractive body lays a propulsion system, which consists of two electric motors connected to highly efficient Panasonic batteries.
Because a fully electric pickup truck isn’t realistic, or market-ready just yet, Workhorse outfitted the W-15 with what many manufacturers call a “range extender” engine. This kind of engine is usually a small displacement gasoline motor used only to extend the overall range of the vehicle, and make sure it can arrive to its destination. You know, should it be further than what its batteries can fulfill.
So far you might think this technological wonder is a wimpy little pickup, but think again. The W-15 puts out a hefty 460 horsepower, and its dual electric motors (one in the front and one in the back) help it achieve 60 mph in just 5.5 seconds. In case you’re wondering, that’s only 0.2 seconds slower than a 2017 Ford Raptor. That’s not where the performance ends, because after all — this is a work truck.
The W-15 can carry up to 2,200 pounds of cargo in its bed, and it can tow up to 5,000 pounds. While that may not sound like a lot, keep in mind this vehicle isn’t designed for towing, yet its current rating can fulfill most medium-sized jobs owners may throw at it. Furthermore, a 7.2kW, 30-amp power outlet located on the side of the truck can run several power tools without needing an alternate source of energy.
Workhorse claims to have over 4,000 orders in the books for the W-15. And based on how good the truck looks inside and out, and the impressive performance, we can’t imagine they’ll have a hard time selling them when they go on sale next year. Unfortunately, pricing hasn’t been released.
Not the W-15, but a primarily electric truck assisted by a small gasoline motor — that’s the pickup truck of the future. Well, at least until the internal combustion engine is eradicated as a whole, that is.