A Glasgow-based firm developing what it claims is the first fully-electric 4X4 vehicle being designed and built in the UK has secured an initial £750,000 backing from Elbow Beach Capital, with a view to its off-road-capable battery cars becoming production line-ready later this year.
Munro Vehicles said it had undergone considerable off-road testing for its Mark 1 cars, which it claims are capable of carrying a 1,000kg payload both on and off-road, with a driving range of over 280km on a single charge of the battery.
Once the production line is at full capacity, Munro expects to create up to 300 new manufacturing jobs in Glasgow in order meet demand of up to 5,000 vehicles per year by 2030, with customers targeted particularly in carbon intensive sectors such as farming, mining and forestry.
At present, over 220,00 farms and 2,000 active mines in the UK alone continue to rely on fossil fuelled all-terrain 4X4 vehicles to carry out their daily operations, underscoring the need to shift to lower carbon alternatives such as the EVs being developed by Munro, according to the firm.
It said the pre-seed injection from Elbow Beach Capital announced yesterday would support its aim to build the production line in Glasgow with a view to delivering the first vehicles to customers in 2023.
Russ Peterson, CEO of Munro, welcomed the support from Elbow Beach Capital. “This investment is beneficial for the local economy and will allow us to source as many of our parts from within the UK as possible, cutting down on carbon emissions from shipping,” he said. “We have a huge job ahead of us to take the Mark 1 to production but with Elbow Beach’s backing we feel empowered to make it happen.”
Proceeds from the funding round will be used to hire key personnel, develop Munro’s order book and grow its sales network while building, testing and upgrading a ‘production intent’ prototype vehicle, according to the firm.
Further funds will be raised later this year to scale the production line, recruit assembly staff and complete first deliveries of pre-ordered vehicles, it added.
Munro said it expected to then be cashflow positive by 2025, which it said would allow for an international roll out of its vehicles thereafter.
As a result of the investment announced yesterday, Elbow Beach Capital CEO Jon Pollock has also joined Munro Vehicle’s board of directors with immediate effect, the firms said.
“We’re delighted to be helping to bring Munro to market, said Pollock. “This is only just the start for Munro; we have seen the prototype in action and were incredibly impressed by its versatility and overall performance under challenging conditions – these will be fit for purpose all-terrain vehicles which just happen to be powered by electricity. With Mark 1 nearing production-readiness, 2022 is going to be an exciting year for the Munro team.”