Gordon Murray, the brains behind the original McLaren F1 hypercar, has helped engineer the world’s first flat-pack truck called the Ox, by Global Vehicle Trust. It is designed to be affordable and conquer rough terrain such as that found in Africa.
Flat-pack assembly is usually synonymous with Ikea furniture. Based on Murray’s iStream lean manufacturing principles, the Ox can be quickly assembled using treated wooden panels over a steel ladder frame. It is a forward control design, with fully-independent suspension and the front-wheel drive, 2.2-litre Duratorq powertrain from a Ford Transit.
Best of all, it features a central driving position, like the aforementioned McLaren F1. The car was dreamt up by Sir Torquil Norman, who is the founder of Global Vehicle Trust.
Six Oxen can occupy one 12-metre shipping container. Said to be very capable off road, the Ox is intended to hit its market destinations within two years. In a statement, the company said:
“The packaging is a key triumph of the OX project: the overall vehicle length is far shorter than a large SUV, and yet it can carry a payload of 1900kg (approximately twice the capacity of most current pick-ups) with a load volume of 7.0 m3. Based on EU size guidelines, it can seat up to 13 people or carry eight 44-gallon drums or three Euro-pallets.”
A similarly principled durable and simple car exists in the form of Kenyan manufacturer Mobius Motors’ Mobius II. It is a conventionally-styled, tubular-framed rugged terrain vehicle with simple fixtures, no windows and a simple, 1.6-litre powertrain. It is designed to provide Africans with a low-cost and tough vehicle.
What do you think of simple cars like this? Would you like to see them being introduced in more countries? See below for the full specs of the Ox.
Technical specifications – XP3 prototype
|Dry weight||1600 kg|
|Payload capacity||1900 kg|
Suspension and damping
|Front||OXGlide leading arms, telescopic dampers and coil springs|
|Rear||OXGlide trailing arms, telescopic dampers and coil springs|
|2.2-litre 16v Diesel|
|Type||4 valves per cylinder|
|Bore x stroke (mm)||86.0 x 94.6|
|Power||100PS at 3500rpm (74kW)|
|Torque||310Nm at 2100rpm|
|Manual, All Synchromesh||5 speed and reverse|
|Type||Rack and pinion|
|Front||300mm ventilated disc|
|Rear||280mm solid disc|
Wheels and tyres
|Wheel size||Tyres – Front||Tyres – Rear|
|x 16-inch||205/80 R16||205/80 R16|
|Luggage||3430 (to sides) / 7000 (maximum)|