Taiga Motors has unveiled its second electric vehicle: a new electric jet ski-like watercraft with a 23 kWh battery pack.

We have been following Taiga Motors, a Montreal-based startup, for years now.

In 2015, the company spun out of McGill’s racing team where the three co-founders, Paul Achard, Gabriel Bernatchez, and Sam Bruneau, worked on electric powertrains during their engineering studies at the university.

They have been focused on developing a lineup of electric snowmobiles.

We tried their first prototype last year and they unveiled their production lineup earlier this year.

Now they have leveraged their development of electric snowmobiles to build an electric watercraft: The Taiga Orca.

They wrote about the watercraft:

“Taiga’s electric drive platform translates seamlessly to a jet propulsion system that sends the craft flying silently across the water with precise control. Orca features a full carbon fiber hull construction, clean puristic body lines, and a floating seat made possible by the absence of a combustion engine. At under 600lbs ready to drive and up to 180 horsepower available with instant torque, the craft offers leading power to weight and agility for an unmatched ride experience.”

Here are a few pictures of the new Taiga Orca:

The Orca is equipped with a 23 kWh battery pack, which is a significant capacity for an electric vehicle of that size.

Taiga says that the energy capacity will be good for about 2 hours on the water and it should be fun with the kind of performance that the Orca packs:

“The performance package equipped Orca can generate over 134kW (180hp) for incredible acceleration and a top speed up to 104km/h (65mph). With a sub 5-milisecond response time, the drive delivers incredible control on any terrain. Precision impeller speed control is achieved to maximize efficiency and reduce noise levels under varying conditions. Unlike many electric vehicles, a high-power output can be sustained thanks to Taiga’s advanced thermal management system. The innovative closed loop cooling circuit running through the battery, motor, and inverter has been tested to maintain temperature regulation from arctic to tropical conditions.”

Now this kind of power comes at a price.

The Taga Orca starts at $24,000 USD and it will be available next year.

The company says that it is building only 500 of them and the first 100 will be “Orca Founders Edition” starting at $28,000 USD.

While it’s expensive, the gas savings can be significant for heavy users and the electric watercraft can be used where gas-powered boats are not allowed.

Not unlike Tesla’s approach of making more an expensive electric vehicle first in order to finance less expensive and more mass-market electric vehicles, Taiga says that after the Orca, it will be “entering the recreational personal watercraft segment with models priced below $14,000 USD and expanding their electric propulsion platform to bring electric inboard and outboard products to the boating industry at large.”

Here are the full specs of the Orca from Taiga Motors:

Exterior Design


  • 2.90 meters (9.5 ft) long, 1.2meters (3.9 ft) wide, 1.01 meters (3 ft) tall
  • Full carbon fiber construction
  • Suspended seat design for 2 riders with rear grab bar.
  • Weight capacity: 181kg / 400lbs
  • Front storage and glove box storage
  • Front and rear anchor points for lifting and towing

Performance


  • Ready to drive weight: 263kg / 580 lbs
  • Top speed: 104kph / 65mph
  • Cruise speed: 70kph / 44mph
  • Range: 2 hours on typical driving conditions
  • Rated for fresh water and ocean use

Drive System


  • Directly driven impeller jet pump.
  • Taiga integrated PMAC drive unit delivering 134kW (180hp) up to 9,000rpm.
  • Reactive impeller speed control for maximum efficiency and minimized noise levels.
  • Closed loop liquid cooling system requiring no flushing or maintenance
  • Rated for temperatures down to -40OC/F not requiring winterization.

Battery and Charging


  • 23kWh of energy, 355V nominal voltage, weight approx. 125kg.
  • Low quiescent drain, can be left up to 5 years unplugged
  • 5 year, 20,000km warranty
  • Shock and vibration isolated structure with IP68 rating for marine environments
  • Onboard charger compatible with automotive standard connectors and chargers
  • 10kW level 2 charging on 240VAC and overnight level-1 charging on 110VAC
  • Optional DC fast charging to 80% in 20 minutes for commercial operators

Controls and Connectivity


  • Configurable 7-inch center console with handlebar controls
  • GPS speed & built in mapping
  • LTE, Wi-Fi for over the air updates and upgrades
  • Bluetooth connectivity via phone for app settings, vehicle monitoring and music
  • Automatic and manual adjustable trim angle
  • User configurable power, acceleration and speed modes with lockout capabilities
  • Powerful onboard computer with extension capabilities for sonar fish finder and other sensory integration.


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