This should be interesting.
Ever since the Tesla Cybertruck was first announced, the internet has been ablaze with new rivals for a vehicle that doesn't even exist yet. We've seen Canoo's multipurpose alternative, GMC's Hummer revival, and Rivian's stunning R1T. But there clearly aren't enough electric pickups in the world yet, and an African company is now looking to break into this potentially highly lucrative market.
Mazibuko Motor Company is building its first battery-electric vehicle, called the M1B, and is claiming that the truck will be capable of 0-62 mph in under five seconds with a range of around 250 miles. Bold claims for a company from South Africa, but MMB has help from a big name in the industry.
Foxconn, the same company that manufactures the Apple iPhone, has joined forces with the new EV company to develop an open-source EV platform, the MiH EV Open Platform. This means that even if the M1B doesn't make production, the company could still be successful as a parts supplier. Thus, Mazibuko Motor Company has joined the MIH Alliance, which has prestigious partners like Amazon Web Services, Arm, CATL, DANA, Eaton, Microsoft, and others. Presumably, this new open-source platform will be the same one under the M1B, and although no working prototype has yet been produced, the claimed specs look pretty impressive.
Originally, Mazibuko Motor Company was claiming that the M1B would produce as much as 670 horsepower and 959 lb-ft of torque with that aforementioned range of around 250 miles, thanks to a 120-kWh battery. Interestingly, the MMC platform being offered for open source use doesn't have the same abilities. It seems that two options, a front-wheel-drive and an AWD platform, will be available, starting with around 174 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. We'll have to wait for more info to see what success these offerings have, but it's encouraging to see new innovators joining the game. The more competition there is, the better and more affordable EVs could become.