New horizons for e-mobility
While a record number of electric vehicles have hit the roads recently, a niche area of mobility is about to be transformed as the world’s first electric snowmobile makes its international debut.
The Canadian start-up Taiga Motors, based in Montreal, was set up in 2015 by the engineers Samuel Bruneau, Gabriel Bernatchez and Paul Achard. The team met while at university and began to experiment with their own electric powertrain for a race car.
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Their attention soon turned to winter sports – and they’re now gearing up to introduce a clean yet powerful vehicle for the great outdoors.
“The two-stroke engines on conventional snowmobiles are up to 50 times more polluting than average cars,” says Bruneau, the company’s CEO, following visits to Scandinavia.
“Our electric snowmobile cuts emissions to zero and enables a completely different riding experience that is more connected to the elements. It’s like skiing in powder but with 100 horsepower at your disposal,” he explains.
PUTTING SNOWMOBILES TO THE TEST
Taiga Motors’ electric snowmobile comes in three different models and has been designed to outperform the polluting two-stroke engine in any usage scenario, from private recreation and safaris to snow patrol and mountain rescue.
In the quest to find a suitable test market for the all-electric vehicle, Bruneau and his team sealed a partnership with SkiStar, Sweden’s largest operator of ski resorts.
“Sweden has a strong community of snowmobile riders who enjoy their traditional snowmobiles. Taiga wants to use a collaborative approach to promote a transition to sustainable snowmobiling without diminishing enjoyment of the sport.”