Lordstown thrashes the skateboard for its Endurance electric truck, in-wheel motors and all


Skateboard platforms are becoming a common go-to for startup electric vehicle makers, as they’re essentially self-contained—packaging most of the core mechanical and propulsion components together in a “rolling chassis.”

That building block, with a little modification, can be tested on its own—which is what Lordstown Motors recently did for the basis of its upcoming Endurance electric pickup, near its Ohio headquarters, with CEO Steve Burns behind the wheel.

Lordstown Endurance

Lordstown Endurance

The skateboard basis is ideal for a startup with limited development funding, as it allows the company to apply a series of modular changes to the skateboard, plus body “top hats”—essentially creating multiple different vehicles that share the same core components. 

Lordstown’s body-on-frame layout makes this even more straightforward. Burns told Green Car Reports that in addition to the full-size Endurance it plans a mid-size pickup as well as a rugged, “industrial strength” SUV

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns driving Endurance

In a series of extreme environments, the video released by Lordstown (below) shows the Endurance platform being pushed through a proving-grounds torture test that presses the suspension and hub motors by shaking them around, submerging them in water, and churning through some snow and mud. Otherwise the platform will have a battery filled with 2170-format cylindrical batteries—the same size Tesla is using for the Model 3 and Model Y.

Showing a “naked” version of the skateboard being put to the test isn’t something entirely new. In recent months, the California startup Canoo and Israel-based REE Automotive have both shown skateboard platforms in action. 

In Lordstown’s case, the four hub motors, one at each wheel, remain the most noteworthy development choice for the platform, as automakers have in the past said that their “unsprung weight” makes suspension development a challenge. It will have a lot to prove with the truck, due next fall, but if the company does all the legwork on development, it could turn out to be an advantage.





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