MinRes to adopt MEVCO’s all-electric utes to cut carbon emissions

Image credit: Mineral Resources

Mineral Resources (MinRes) is the first West Australian mining company to secure units of Australian-made electric Toyota HiLux utes for its mine site operations. 

The procurement of the vehicles is part of MinRes’ efforts to decarbonise its mining operations in the state, which includes two of the world’s largest hard-rock lithium mines. 

MinRes ordered the vehicles from mining industry vehicle supplier and global systems integrator MEVCO, which recently collaborated with SEA Electric to develop electric Toyota HiLux and LandCruiser utes. 

SEA Electric has been converting the vehicles’ diesel-powered engines to all-electric using its proprietary SEA-Drive power system. 

The HiLux utes purchased by MinRes will be fitted with an 88 kWh battery, capable of offering a range of up to 380 km. The vehicles can be charged up to 80 per cent in less than an hour, MinRes said in a media release

A demonstration model touched down in Perth this week and the first batch of electric utes is expected to arrive in WA in April. 

As part of MinRes’ commitment to achieving net zero emissions by 2050, the mining company will use the electric utes at its operations located across Western Australia, including at the Koolyanobbing iron ore mine in the Yilgarn. 

“MinRes has a plan to transition to a low-carbon future and cutting our reliance on diesel is central to achieving this goal. Our MEVCO electric utes are just one of the many ways we’re driving towards net zero and an exciting step in our decarbonization journey,” said Mike Grey, chief executive officer at MinRes. 

“Battery technologies are key to a clean energy future and MinRes is playing a significant role in achieving this global goal. As the world races towards decarbonisation, we are part of the journey because it’s not just good business but the right thing to do,” Grey added. 

The upcoming delivery of the new vehicles comes two years after MinRes took delivery of the first-electric light truck to roll off the SEA Electric production line. 

MinRes said it is cutting emissions at its mining operations using various technologies, as well as plans to transition road trains at its Onslow Iron project from diesel to electric.