He chose Volkswagen’s iconic Kombi and turned it into a highly functional, solar-powered electric van which is now the ideal transportation for this American family.
Brett Belen was, for some years, the builder of electric vehicles that, in order to fuel, it was enough to park… in the sun. This was done once again, taking advantage of the 1973 model, which presented the perfect base characteristics for the project because it is spacious and equipped with a generous roof area. When designing the application of a huge photovoltaic panel for maximum solar exposure, he realized that the space between the plate and the vehicle itself could be boosted.
The roof is made up of four 305-watt LG panels that, when lifted, assume the diagonal position at a maximum angle of 40 °, opening up an extra area that is accessed from the inside of the van. The sides are made of waterproof fabric, such as a camping tent, just like the original model of the German brand.
Properly positioned to monitor the movement of the sun, optimizing the exposure when parked, with the plate open at its maximum angle, it is possible to take advantage of about 6 hours of solar energy.
The interior is mainly functional, equipped with folding tables and storage spaces.
A pack consisting of 12 T-1275 acid lead batteries is housed under a seat in the back of the truck. These batteries have an autonomy of approximately 80 kilometers per charge guaranteed. It may not be much but Belen ensures that it is sufficient for the approximately 2250 kilometers journey he intends to do with his wife and their two children.