Global Vehicle Trust OX Launched

The world’s first ‘flat-pack’ truck – the Global Vehicle Trust OX – has been revealed in London, designed to provide low-cost all-terrain mobility for remote parts of Africa and the developing world.

Across such countries, there is intense need for improved transport for both everyday living as well as emergencies. The OX has been designed specifically to tackle a host of transport challenges, and to undertake crucial daily tasks, such as collecting drinking water and transporting grain, fertilizer or building materials.

The OX originated from the vision of one man, Sir Torquil Norman. Five years ago, he founded the Global Vehicle Trust (GVT), to pursue his ambition to help people in the developing world by providing cost-effective mobility. The GVT subsequently briefed renowned automotive designer Professor Gordon Murray on a unique humanitarian programme to create a revolutionary lightweight truck.

The brief for the vehicle called for high ground clearance, excellent approach and departure angles, large wheel movement, a multi-purpose layout and a three-person cab. Its flat-pack format changes the way a vehicle can be bought and transported, providing specific advantages to delivery time and cost.

The OX has been designed to offer all-terrain ability, with a large and adaptable load carrying area. The vehicle length is far shorter than a normal large SUV, yet it can carry a payload of 1900kg (approximately twice the capacity of most current pick-ups) with a load volume of seven cubic metres. Based on EU size guidelines, it can seat up to 13 people or carry eight 44-gallon drums or three Euro-pallets.

The OX’s cabin provides accommodation for three people, and the driver is seated centrally. This layout has specific advantages for the world’s developing countries, some of which have right-hand traffic, while others drive on the left of the road.

Uniquely, it is capable of being flat-packed within itself, enabling it to be transported more efficiently around the world. It takes three people less than six hours to create the flat pack in the UK prior to shipping, and six of these flat packs can be shipped within a 40ft high-cube container. Assembly labour is transferred to the importing country, where local companies will be employed to assemble and maintain the finished vehicles. Three skilled people can put an OX together in approximately 12 hours.

Another clever feature is the tailgate, which detaches completely and can be rotated lengthways to double as a loading ramp. The rear bench seat bases also have a dual purpose. The long ‘egg crate’ frames can be removed from the vehicle and used as ‘sand ladders’ under the wheels to help the OX traverse challenging soft ground.

Sir Torquil Norman said, “My inspiration for the OX goes back to seeing the ‘Africar’ project of the 1980s. This project shares some of the aims of that vehicle, but its execution is radically different. OX was just a dream six years ago, but it is now a realistic prospect for production with working prototypes that have completed a comprehensive testing programme.”

Professor Gordon Murray said, “The OX design and prototyping programme is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and challenging I have undertaken during my 45 years of car design, including my years in F1.”

“The added challenge of a flat-packed vehicle design over the already tough targets for cost, durability and weight saving made for a fascinating and stimulating journey from concept to prototype.”

The world’s first ‘flat-pack’ truck – the Global Vehicle Trust OX – has been revealed in London, designed to provide low-cost all-terrain mobility for remote parts of Africa and the developing world.

Across Africa and other developing countries, there is intense need for improved transport for both everyday living as well as emergencies. The OX has been designed specifically to tackle a host of transport challenges, and to undertake crucial daily tasks, such as collecting drinking water and transporting grain, fertilizer or building materials.

The OX originated from the vision of one man, Sir Torquil Norman. Five years ago, he founded the Global Vehicle Trust (GVT), to pursue his ambition to help people in the developing world by providing cost-effective mobility. The GVT subsequently briefed renowned automotive designer Professor Gordon Murray on a unique humanitarian programme to create a revolutionary lightweight truck.

The brief for the vehicle called for high ground clearance, excellent approach and departure angles, large wheel movement, a multi-purpose layout and a three-person cab. Its flat-pack format changes the way a vehicle can be bought and transported, providing specific advantages to delivery time and cost.

TNB-Ox-truck copy

The OX has been designed to offer all-terrain ability, with a large and adaptable load carrying area. The vehicle length is far shorter than a normal large SUV, yet it can carry a payload of 1900kg (approximately twice the capacity of most current pick-ups) with a load volume of seven cubic metres. Based on EU size guidelines, it can seat up to 13 people or carry eight 44-gallon drums or three Euro-pallets.

The OX’s cabin provides accommodation for three people, and the driver is seated centrally. This layout has specific advantages for the world’s developing countries, some of which have right-hand traffic, while others drive on the left of the road.

Uniquely, it is capable of being flat-packed within itself, enabling it to be transported more efficiently around the world. It takes three people less than six hours to create the flat pack in the UK prior to shipping, and six of these flat packs can be shipped within a 40ft high-cube container. Assembly labour is transferred to the importing country, where local companies will be employed to assemble and maintain the finished vehicles. Three skilled people can put an OX together in approximately 12 hours.

Another clever feature is the tailgate, which detaches completely and can be rotated lengthways to double as a loading ramp. The rear bench seat bases also have a dual purpose. The long ‘egg crate’ frames can be removed from the vehicle and used as ‘sand ladders’ under the wheels to help the OX traverse challenging soft ground.

Sir Torquil Norman said, “My inspiration for the OX goes back to seeing the ‘Africar’ project of the 1980s. This project shares some of the aims of that vehicle, but its execution is radically different. OX was just a dream six years ago, but it is now a realistic prospect for production with working prototypes that have completed a comprehensive testing programme.”

Professor Gordon Murray said, “The OX design and prototyping programme is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and challenging I have undertaken during my 45 years of car design, including my years in F1.”

“The added challenge of a flat-packed vehicle design over the already tough targets for cost, durability and weight saving made for a fascinating and stimulating journey from concept to prototype.”

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