BRP is thinking about a futuristic electric car

BRP is thinking about a futuristic electric car
BRP is thinking about a futuristic electric car

Known for its snowmobiles, watercraft and off-road vehicles, Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP) is now interested in electric cars!

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• Read also: A new electric snowmobile from BRP is quite impressive

The Valcourt company recently filed a patent application for a vehicle equipped with special doors that would allow access to both rows of seats in a single opening.

“The door moves forward and outward in a pivoting and translational motion,” states a BRP document available on the World Intellectual Property Organization website.

“This way, the lateral space needed to open the door is reduced” compared to a traditional car door, adds the Quebec manufacturer.

Illustration BRP

The concept developed by BRP could be applied to different types of automobiles: hatchbacks, sport utility vehicles (SUVs), minivans, city cars, coupes, compacts and subcompacts, the company lists.

“Advanced Concepts”

When The newspaper asked BRP if it was considering getting into electric cars, the company declined to comment.

“BRP is a company that runs on innovation. We are continually working on advanced concepts and in this sense, we file patents [demandes de] patents to protect the ideas and innovations we develop for the short and long term,” said BRP spokesperson Emilie Proulx.

That said, the Bombardier family has been interested in the automobile industry for a long time. In 1985, Bombardier built a prototype gasoline-powered car, the Venus (for economical, new, useful and safe vehicle). The vehicle was never marketed.

Photo Museum of Ingenuity J. Armand Bombardier

Bombardier’s Venus.

Then, from 1996 to 1999, Bombardier marketed the Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV), an electric car which, however, proved to be a commercial failure.

Photo Museum of Ingenuity J. Armand Bombardier

Bombardier’s NEV.

In 2007, BRP hit the road with the launch of the Spyder three-wheeled motorcycle.

One thing is certain: BRP would have to invest colossal sums to make its place in the highly competitive electric car sector, which is largely occupied by Western and Asian giants.

Currently, several manufacturers “are losing money on every electric vehicle they sell,” said consultant Pierre Langlois, who knows the industry well.

Expensive and longer than expected

For now, BRP is focused on electrifying its current product line. The company recently launched its first electric snowmobile and is set to launch two Can-Am electric motorcycle models next month.

Photo BRP

One of BRP’s new Can-Am electric motorcycles.

In March 2021, BRP announced a $300 million investment over five years to develop electric versions of its vehicles, but the process is taking longer than expected.

“We remain committed to offering an electric vehicle in each of our product lines and to becoming the benchmark in electric recreational vehicles,” assured Proulx.

“What we have in the plans is very exciting, but […] “We have decided to delay the launch of some of our electric vehicles,” she added. “BRP stands out by developing its own technology internally, which allows us to be agile and competitive, but this is complex and takes time.”

According to Daniel Breton, CEO of Electric Mobility Canada, BRP will succeed in convincing its customers to make the jump.

Photo LinkedIn

Daniel Breton

“There are cases where 100% electric watercraft or snowmobiles are difficult to apply at the moment,” he said. “But the reality is that not everyone goes out on a snowmobile and does 300 kilometres in a day.”

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