Karma unveils self-driving electric van based on E-Flex platform

EV startup Karma wants to be much more than just a car manufacturer. The Californian company currently sells the Revero GT extended-range electric sedan but plans to offer design and engineering services in the future, as well as whole vehicle platforms.

Karma in late March presented E-Flex, a modular platform designed to support both battery-electric and extended-range EVs. The platform underpins the Revero GT but Karma said a maximum five vehicle types have been designed around the platform. The second of these was revealed Thursday in the form of the E-Flex Van concept.

The E-Flex Van uses a battery-electric version of the E-Flex platform, though details on power and range haven’t been mentioned. What we do know is that this particular configuration features both a flat battery and the I-shaped battery used in the extended-range version of the E-Flex platform.

2020 Karma Revero GT

2020 Karma Revero GT

The E-Flex platform has 22 possible configurations, with buyers also able to specify the number of electric motors they require up to a maximum of four. Going with the four-motor setup for a vehicle like the E-Flex Van will eat into the cargo space, though.

The flexibility of Karma’s E-Flex platform doesn’t end there. The company also teamed up with Chinese self-driving car startup WeRide to install a self-driving system whose capability is rated at Level 4 on the SAE scale, meaning the vehicle should be able to handle itself on its own for extended periods though only within certain situations. The WeRide system’s computer processor is Nvidia’s powerful Drive AGX Pegasus which can handle 320 trillion operations per second.

Beyond the Revero GT and E-Flex Van, Karma has hinted at a pickup truck, SUV, and even a supercar. The company said that additional vehicles based on the E-Flex platform will be shown in the coming months, one of which will be a supercar.

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