“Appropriately, the first modern “fully electric vehicle” commercially available in Australia is locally produced and 30+ examples have been sold here and in New Zealand. Based on imported Hyundai Getz platforms, the sedan is converted to electric power by Blade Electric Vehicles at a custom facility at Castlemaine, Victoria.”
Society of Automotive Engineers Editor Barry Oosthuizen ISSUE 39 SEPTEMBER 2010
Great pioneering stories have threads that reflect both the best and worst of the human condition. The struggle against the big foreign motor companies to give life to Australia’s own electric vehicle manufacturing industry is laced with vision, determination, greed, hubris and sloth. It’s a great story and it’s still unfolding as Blade Electric Vehicles becomes the subject of a study by a major Australian University.
Hard Road for EV Pioneer
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Pioneers in electric cars
The Age Drive Section April 29, 2011
“Blade Electric Vehicles have been producing electric cars since 2007 starting with the public release of Australia’s first all electric production vehicle, the Electron Mk l, in February 2008.”
Blade Electric Vehicles – pioneering EVs in Australia
By SAE-A Editor Barry Oosthuizen ISSUE 39 SEPTEMBER 2010
Castlemaine’s pioneer all electric plug in car
July 30 2010 The Age
Fuel gauge failure costs Hyundai NZ deal
Hyundai NZ planned to sell 200 Electrons however after a major Australian University and two contract electrical engineers failed to deliver a commercially viable fuel gauge for the vehicle the agreement lapsed.
Hyundai first to sell electric cars in NZ
26 September 2008
Media Release: MR25 Hyundai first to sell electric cars in New Zealand
“In a New Zealand first Hyundai has announced today that it will be the first automotive
manufacturer to offer new electric cars for sale in New Zealand, and to further enhance that
announcement, it will be off the back of local manufacturing.
The project is in collaboration with engineer, Ross Blade who developed the Getz retro‐fit
electric car. He will be setting up a production facility based around a projected sales base of
200 plus vehicles per annum. The projected retail price will be under other hybrid models on
the market at the moment.“
Hyundai Motors New Zealand
The real challenges begin
29 Jan 2009 Toyota wrote to the Victorian Government and stated concern over Blade’s planned electrification of 15 to 18 Toyota Camry’s for the Melbourne City Council. Toyota expressed concerns over possible safety and warranty issues that might arise as a result of such a conversion.
3 Mar 2009 In a move unrelated to the above VICroads verbally advised BEV’s Signatory Engineer that Blade cars will no longer be authorised for registration in Victoria. Clarification in writing is sought 15 March 2011 from VICroads but no reply. BEV has no income from sales through March until late July 2009. The company comes close to folding.
22 Jun 2009 the Federal body known as DOTARS issues BEV with a low volume license to manufacture and register Electrons throughout Australia.
VICroads does not provide advice on what registration conditions it will place on an all electric Camry conversion until late 2010/11 – the deal to convert 15 to 18 Camry’s to electric drive for Melbourne City Council is however long dead.
Green Car Pioneer buoyed by assistance package
The Weekend Australian November 15-16 2008