B1 a rugged electric star
Allow me to introduce the Bollinger B1, a vehicle looking so wrong and yet so right.
Imagine combining the DNA from a Jeep Wrangler and a Land Rover Defender and handing over the progeny to be raised by Skynet Cyberdyne Systems Corporation in a futuristic time line.
Founder Robert Bollinger had become increasingly frustrated with the limitations and irrational design trends for commercial vehicles which, in his opinion, often got in the way of practicality and versatility.
Bollinger isn’t trying to compete with established manufacturers but demonstrate electric vehicles can and will play a significant role for off-road vehicles.
The Bollinger bucks the trend of sterilisation and cocooning occupants in an opulently appointed electronically operated capsule isolating the raw tactile and sensory engagement of the driver and occupants with their surroundings.
Unlike modern electronically enhanced four-wheel-drives trying to compensate for driver error, the Bollinger puts the driver firmly in the pilot seat. Yes, it requires driver skill to guide this simple mechanical machine safely through challenging terrain. Get off your PlayStation; do it for real.
The interior of the B1 is basic at best, the style is set by manual sliding windows and analogue gauges even for the battery indicator.
With no internal combustion engine, the electric motors and batteries are mounted at floor-pan levThe el, providing a low centre of gravity and a near-perfect 50:50 weight distribution. Storage is commodious, with a second boot space up front where the engine would normally be and a pass-through panel allowing for longer items.
It’s clear Bollinger has placed practicality and function at the forefront of the design when looking at off-road capability.
The vehicle runs on LT285/70/ R17 tyres, with 390mm of ground clearance and 250mm of wheel travel. It also includes locking front and rear differentials with disconnecting sway bars, a 56degree approach angle for rock ledges and 54 degrees for departure to ensure you don’t scrape your tail on steep slopes.
But a fully electric 4WD . . . surely it’s not possible?
B1 runs dual electric motors coupled to a two-speed box transmitting power to the outbound in-wheel geared axle hubs offering a further torque multiplication of 2:1. According to Bollinger, the B1 is capable of stomping from 0-100km/h in a little over 4.5 seconds, thanks in part to the efficiency of the electric motors deploying 630Nm of torque from stand still.
Add a quoted carrying capacity of over two tonnes and this is one impressive vehicle.
At least for now, the B1 is limited to a 300km range.
Given what this vehicle provides today and promises for the future, this is a seriously positive outlook for those who love exploring outdoors.
Imagine tackling those tracks in highly capable vehicles which are environmentally friendly with zero emissions. and no noise pollution.
Are you smiling yet?
Bollinger B1 has a pass-through door for long items.
Form and function win out over artistic design in the B1.