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Victoria backs autonomous EV platform maker

Applied EV aiming for multi-use solution including commercial vehicles


The Victorian government is supporting a Melbourne firm to advance its autonomous electric vehicle (EV) concepts.

The latest concept, dubbed Blanc Robot, is a platform configurable for multiple uses including commercial transport.

“Applied EV has developed a sophisticated ‘plug and play’ software and electrical system called the Digital Backbone that powers the Blanc Robot platform,” the government states.

“With a range of charging options, the Blanc Robot provides flexible and energy-efficient transport that is safe, low cost and has zero emissions.

“Blanc Robot is designed to service goods delivery, agriculture, mining and industrial and waste management, as well as passenger transport, and will be trialled by major international industry players this year.”

Read about the state EV tax debate, here

The backing supports Applied EV’s new $2 million facility in Bayswater North, which will accommodate research and development plus early vehicle production.

“The future of travel and transport will be autonomous, electric and connected, and Victorian companies are leading the way,” state industry minister Martin Pakula says.

“Innovators like Applied EV are building on expertise gained from traditional manufacturing with advancements in robotics and artificial intelligence to produce revolutionary solutions for now and the future.”

Established in 2015 by executives who built their careers at General Motors Holden and Telstra, Applied EV has grown on the back of strong global demand for its technology and driven by a workforce sourced from Victoria’s extensive talent pool in advanced manufacturing, design and engineering.

“We welcome the support from the Victorian government, which helps take our Melbourne-made mobility solutions to the global market – offering a product that is cost-effective, adaptable to business needs and good for the environment,” Applied EV chief executive Julian Broadbent says.

His company linked in March with Japanese advanced materials firm Teijin to develop prototype vehicles.

The support comes through the state government’s Local Industry Fund for Transition program for up-skilling automotive sector employees impacted by the demise of the car-makers.

It also extends the government’s investment in the autonomous and electric vehicle industry.

The government notes it partnered with Transdev in 2019 to develop the first locally-built, fully electric bus with body construction and fit-out by Volgren in Dandenong.


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