An Israeli start-up that launched about a year has just come to our attention with the announcement that it has closed a round of venture funding. ETV Motors has been working on a powertrain for range extended EVs that features a micro-turbine to drive the generator. ETV this week collected $12 million in funding from The Quercus Trust of Newport Beach, California and New York-based 21Ventures.
According to COO Arnold Roth, the company is focusing on developing its powertrain technology. No long term decisions have been made yet but the company plans to explore licensing and co-development deals with automakers and suppliers once they get further along. Roth tells ABG "We are evaluating multiple options, and have certainly not closed the door on producing what we develop, either alone or with suitable partners." The concept of using a small turbine to drive the generator is not unique to this company. Automotive X-Prize competitor Velozzi is doing something very similar on its competitor.
Turbines have advantages in this kind of application because they work better at constant speed than they do in transient conditions. Turbines can also operate on a wide variety of fuels without modification. The company has a Toyota Prius mule running with its experimental powertrain.
[Source: ETV Motors]