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Mercosul Motores Enters the Automotive Segment

Mercosul Motores expands its product portfolio by entering the automotive segment. One of the first innovations to hit the market, possibly during the first half of the year, is the electrification kit. Divided into categories, the kits are aimed at the light vehicle and utility vehicle market.

The kit consists of an electric motor, 100% domestically produced and the main driver of vehicle traction, manufactured by the company, and other components from partners, approved by Mercosul Motores' engineering. The batteries utilize lithium, iron, and phosphate (LFP) technology and can be configured and sized according to customer specifications.

CEO Carlos Eduardo França emphasizes that the company could anticipate the start of sales, but the defined strategy includes having a comprehensive view of the purposes of the initiative to act in environmental preservation. In this regard, the company will begin with training for mechanics through representative associations so that the work is not limited solely to conversion, but also includes understanding the fate of the remaining components, especially in recycling, and proper disposal of the unusable.

In this direction, the company will have an independent operation with specialized professionals based in its structure to work on spreading ESG concepts. "A significant portion of electrification projects does not consider this awareness involving the entire chain. Mercosul's goal is to effectively have a green operation and act in defense of the environment," he emphasizes.

The executive estimates that the cost of an electrification kit, depending on its configuration, should range between R$ 40,000 and R$ 80,000, a cost that, he acknowledges, makes operationalization difficult. To make the business viable, Mercosul is working with two financial institutions so that customers can purchase with monthly installments ranging from R$ 1,000 to R$ 1,500, with a long amortization period.

Another initiative is the electrified tractor developed by the company's internal engineering team. The project involves electrifying a tractor already in use at the company, which initially was a proof of concept and is now operational in the factory. The vehicle underwent a conversion from combustion to electric system.

It features a three-phase induction motor with efficiency above 90%, equipped with temperature and speed sensors. The project includes additional devices such as a battery management system and AC-DC charger, as well as other components to ensure functionality. Depending on usage profile, the e-tractor's battery bank provides up to a full day of operation and takes a few hours to reach 100% full charge. Another segment to be addressed is that of cargo transport carts and people movers in restricted areas, as well as rescues, first aid, and patrol and security.

Mercosul has an electromobility sector that works on developing energy transition solutions in partnership with educational institutions, with resources from the federal government's Rota 2030 program. Projects include electric machines, inverters, creating a test bench for characterization and validation of electric propulsion systems, and even a national battery designed to be manufactured in the new operation to be installed in Coruripe, in the interior of Alagoas. Operations are expected to begin in this first quarter, producing the traditional portfolio but with a primary future focus on the electric vehicle segment. "Over there, we also want to create a kit for converting combustion buses to electric," the executive anticipates.

Mercosul Motores began its operation in 2018 with the acquisition of the industrial park where Brazil's first electric motor manufacturer, Eberle, was located. The portfolio includes induction motors, single-phase and three-phase low-voltage motors for commercial and industrial lines, industrial automation devices, speed reducers, and more recently, automotive electric mobility solutions. In the 25,000 square meter industrial plant, around 30,000 motors are produced monthly by a staff of 400 employees.

Journalistic article by: Jornal do Comércio.

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