Electric Vehicles at Sea?
It is now common to find road-based electric vehicles (EV) on our city streets. Every major car manufacturer is making at least one model: Toyota, Nissan, Kia, Mitsubishi, Fiat, Chevrolet, BMW, Mercedes Benz, etc.
I’m no longer surprised to even find them in my rural neighbourhood, where we have more sheep than humans! 🙂
With favourable tax breaks and government incentives as well as improving battery life and performance, even your regular man-in-the-street is willing to try one. Here I am; scaring myself with a Tesla S P90D in Ludicrous mode…
The electric vehicle trend is fast becoming the norm on the ocean as well.
AlphaLuxe recently reported on the eFoil [click]
Whereas the eFoil has yet to announce a price or deliveries, here is an electric water craft that is already available.
Free Form Factory Gratis X1 US$18,000
“ The Gratis X1 is set to flip water sports on its head. As a professional rider, torque is one the greatest assets to have in a stand-up ski. With the Gratis X1, that instantaneous torque is always there when I need it. There is no need to constantly feather the throttle to find that sweet spot. I can now do tricks with greater ease and confidence.”
-Brandon Lawlor, Professional Rider
The Free Form Factory Gratis X1 [click] is the world’s first electric, stand-up personal watercraft (PWC) brought to market. They don’t like you to call it an electric jet-ski but that’s what it is, in function.
What do you get for your money?
The Gratis X1 is a high performance (40 knots) PWC free of fuel, noise and emissions. Unlike combustion engine PWC, electric water craft may be allowed on many waterways with environmental sound and emission limits.
Compared with typical rider usage time of a gasoline-powered PWC, the Gratis X1 ride time on the built-in power pack is up to 45 minutes and up to 1 hour with the additional 3.3 kWh power pack. You can charge it using standard home electric plugs and portable generators. The standard on board charger takes approximately 3 hours to fill the integrated 6.6 kWh power pack and approximately 4 hours in total when you add the extra 3.3 kWh add on power pack.
The powertrain is derived from ZERO Motorcycles’ proven Z-Force® 46 HP electric drivetrain. All of the torque is available instantly for peak acceleration. On a Gratis X1, the environment is free of petroleum exhaust produced from a two-stroke or four-stroke combustion engine.
The hull, deck, drivetrain tray, and hood, are all made with Free Form Factory’s proprietary manufacturing process and material, HULKLITE™, which allows the Gratis X1 to be light (380 lb / 173 kg) but more durable than a comparable stand up PWC. The body is 4 times stronger than fibreglass PWCs.
Designed with sustainability at the core of creation, the entire deck and hull components are 100% recyclable, manufactured with the highest of green standards. Trim and excess material is reused to build the next Gratis X1 hull and deck.
Dynamic LED headlights come as standard for increased safety and visibility.
Finally, and they take pride in this: “Every Gratis X1 is made in America.”
Author’s Biography: Melvyn Teillol-Foo (MTF)
Dr Melvyn Teillol-Foo is a contributor on AlphaLuxe web-zine.
He is also a moderator on PuristSPro.com horology discussion fora. He blends his scientific medical objectivity from the pharmaceutical industry with purist passion, in his musings about watches, travel, wine, food and other epicurean delights.
His travelogue ‘Lazing’ and feasting ‘Grazing’ series of articles have now passed into “mythic legend” on the original ‘ThePuristS.com’ website. Those were the halcyon days when he was “rich and famous” that he remembers with bittersweet fondness.
Dr Teillol-Foo is a quoted enthusiast on the watch industry, appearing in feature articles and interviews by Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Sunday Times (London), Chronos (Japan), Citizen Hedonist (France) and other publications. He has authored articles for magazines like International Watch (iW) – both U.S. & Chinese editions, ICON (Singapore), August Man (Singapore), Comfort (China) and The Watch (Hong Kong).