EV Plug-In: ProEV opens Montreal manufacturing plant

Business reporter
  • Sep. 1, 2022
IMAGE: ProEV logo

Courtesy ProEV.

Promark Electronics Inc. (ProEV) has opened a manufacturing and engineering site for commercial and industrial electric vehicles (EVs) — which the company says is the largest of its kind in North America.

ProEV is a subsidiary of Electrical Components International Inc. (ECI), a global supplier of electrical distribution systems, control box assemblies and other components. While ProEV is headquartered in Pointe-Claire, Que., ECI has approximately 25,000 employees and now has 38 manufacturing locations worldwide.

The opening of the site, on Côte-de-Liesse Road in Greater Montreal, was coupled with a $10 million investment from ProEV over five years to support new facilities on the site.

It will also include “an innovation department to optimize manufacturing processes and increase the impact of existing technologies,” the company stated in the announcement.

ProEV received support from economic development agencies Montréal International and Investissement Québec International.

“…By choosing Montréal, ECI and ProEV continue to highlight the ongoing success of Quebec’s leading equipment manufacturers and the critical role the metropolis plays at the heart of the EV supply chain,” said Michael Balseil, ECI’s president and CEO, in the announcement.

The new facility is creating 250 jobs, including manufacturing technicians, engineers, project managers and developers.

ECI was established in 1953 and is headquartered in St. Louis, Mo.

Girardin EVs qualify for incentives

Bus distributor Girardin Blue Bird’s line of EVs are now eligible for Canada’s medium- and zero-emission heavy-duty trucks (iMHZEV) federal incentive.

This will allow the company’s dealerships in Drummondville, Que. and Brantford, Ont. to electrify the fleets of private businesses, public transport companies and urban paratransit with its electric commercial Blue Bird buses and Micro Bird minibuses.

Girardin is the exclusive distributor of these buses in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes.

The Micro Bird minibuses are manufactured in Quebec.

The incentive comes in the form of a purchase rebate — $100,000 for a Blue Bird Vision or TX4 model and $75,000 for the Micro Bird G5.

Girardin also distributes its buses in New York and Connecticut.

TUGA files patent

Vancouver-based TUGA Innovations Inc. has filed a patent application for an “affiliated emissions measuring technology” which it calls PLUME.

PLUME is designed to provide real-time emissions data from internal combustion engines. The company states it will measure the actual emissions from these engines, allowing users to compare that data to the claims of the manufacturers. It will then visualize that data in augmented reality.

The patent’s inventors are Francisca Cunha and Sofia Pereira, who came up with the idea as a university project.

“We encouraged Francisca and Sofia to collaborate and offered to assist with the patent application for their project. We feel that ‘visualizing the invisible’ could be an extremely powerful tool and useful asset for our growing suite of digital mobility technologies planned for incorporation into our TUGA family of EV products,” said TUGA CEO John Hagie in a statement on the patent application.

In August, SustainableBiz had reported on TUGA’s (TUGA-CN) introduction of its family of three-wheeled, two-seat electric vehicles — in a motorcycle/car hybrid.

Hillcrest white paper shows inverter advantages

A new white paper from Hillcrest Energy Technologies Ltd. outlines some of the benefits of its high-efficiency inverter (HEI) technology.

In an EV, the inverter takes the high-voltage DC electricity from batteries and converts it into AC electricity for the motor.

The white paper is the first in a planned series. It explains how operating at higher switching frequencies can result in a significant reduction in the size of capacitors within the system, as well as improvements in power quality, system reliability and component life.

Enabling switching at higher frequencies with Hillcrest’s (HEAT-CN) technology can result in a significant increase in power density.

In March, SustainableBiz reported on Vancouver-based Hillcrest completing the design specifications for its inverter.

“Deploying higher switching frequencies, historically, has meant a greater increase in losses (and) lower system efficiency,” Don Currie, Hillcrest’s CEO said at the time. “The HEI technology enables the powertrain applications to leverage higher switching frequencies and realize improved traction motor performance and reliability, operating (at) higher power levels without compromising any deficiencies.”

FLO installs 100th NYC charger

FLO has installed its 100th EV charger in New York City, as part of a pilot program that began in June 2021.

Founded in 2009 in Quebec and operated by AddÉnergie Technologies Inc., FLO partnered with the New York City Department of Transportation and Consolidated Edison Inc. on the program.

New York City has a goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. It will need over 40,000 publicly accessible Level 2 chargers to meet the projected demand of nearly 400,000 EVs which are expected to be registered in the city by that time. Currently, there are over 15,000 EVs registered.

FLO’s goal is to produce 250,000 EV chargers for the U.S. market by 2028.

Charging at the stations costs $2.50 per hour during the day and $1 per hour overnight.

In July, SustainableBiz reported on FLO president and CEO Louis Tremblay’s appointment to the board of directors for the Alliance for Transportation Electrification (ATE) — a consortium of utilities, automotive OEMs, EV vendors and NGOs across North America working to increase EV adoption.

FLO has installed over 65,000 fast and level 2 EV charging stations across North America. The chargers are assembled in Michigan and Quebec.

NFI subsidiary adds new electric buses to portfolio

U.K,-based Alexander Dennis Ltd., is expanding its zero-emission manufacturing portfolio with the addition of two new electric buses. The firm is a subsidiary of Winnipeg’s NFI Group Inc.

A new small bus, designed as a medium-duty vehicle, and an electric double deck bus will be available for customer delivery in late 2023. They will be developed with input from Coventry University.

NFI (NFI-T) has EVs operating in over 110 cities in six countries.

The company has produced about 105,000 coaches and buses for use around the world.

NFI’s other brands are MCI and Plaxton for motor coaches, New Flyer for heavy-duty transit buses, as well as ARBOC for low-floor cutaway and medium-duty buses.



Nicholas Sokic is a freelance, Toronto-based journalist. He has covered a number of sectors, including business, finance, crypto, health, cannabis and culture. He graduated from Western University's Master of Media…

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Nicholas Sokic is a freelance, Toronto-based journalist. He has covered a number of sectors, including business, finance, crypto, health, cannabis and culture. He graduated from Western University's Master of Media…

Read more



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