Canoo electric pickup truck is small, utilitarian and has 600 horsepower

March 12, 2021 6:35 am by Web Desk

Canoo is adding to the long list of electric pickup trucks that are seemingly on the way yet not quite available for sale yet. It doesn’t have a name at this point; Canoo is just referring to it as the “pickup truck.” While that’s not anywhere near as flashy and headline-catching as the “Cybertruck,” that doesn’t mean we’re any less excited about this pickup.

The truck’s unique design is the first item of interest. It’s a cab-forward shape with no traditional hood or your typical pickup box design. We’re getting flashes of the Dodge A100, as it features a short upright cabin at the nose of the pickup and a long bed in back. Canoo’s signature lighting graces the front and rear. There are four doors — the rear two look like half doors. And the wheels are pushed to the corners with fender flares jutting out to cover the chunky tires.

What’s more interesting than the design, though, are all the useful utility touches Canoo integrated into the truck. The bed has a pull-out bed extension that allows stowage of a 4×8-foot sheet of plywood. It’s lined with LED lights to illuminate it at night, and can be equipped with modular space dividers to keep items away from others. The bed wall itself has modular chocks to secure wheels to or to use as tie downs. The bed sides will flip down on either side to be used as tables or workbenches, and they have power sources in close proximity.

Even without a large hood, Canoo found space in the front for a storage opportunity. The “front grille” area opens up and down, revealing a small place to tuck some of your things. What’s even more useful here is the additional workstation or table that the opening flap turns into when you fold it out. Canoo placed six electrical outlets and four USB ports here, which is likely more power outlets than anybody will need. The last hidden storage spot is a hideaway pullout just in front of the rear wheels. It’s no giant passthrough like the Rivian R1T has, but you can put smaller items in the nook, and it doubles as a step to reach things inside the bed, too.

If you’re someone who likes to camp on the roof of your vehicle, Canoo says it’s designed the vehicle to be compatible with camper shells to fully enclose the bed and make it possible to put a giant tent atop the truck. The actual footprint of the pickup is smaller than virtually everything else on the market. It’s about two inches shorter than a new BMW 3 Series, but Canoo thinks that its design makes it just as useful as other small pickups because it eliminates the need for engine space.

The battery and power specs are limited for the time being. Canoo isn’t saying how big its battery is or what options there will be, but it’s claiming “200+” miles of range on a full charge. There will be both single-motor and dual-motor versions available, with the dual-motor version topping out at 600 horsepower and 550 pound-feet of torque. The truck will certainly be heavy with its big battery underneath everything, but that’s still going to be an excessive amount of power for a pickup. Canoo is claiming an 1,800-pound payload capacity, but is staying mum on towing capacity.

None of the interior photos show a version with rear seats, but Canoo says that a pair of rear seats will be optional, bringing the total to four. Canoo thinks that there will be demand for two-seat versions, too, as it allows the rear to be turned into a customizable storage compartment.

As for when you can buy one of these, Canoo says that pre-orders will open in the second quarter of 2021. The company expects initial deliveries to be made at the beginning of 2023. Canoo hasn’t attached a price to the pickup yet, but the $33,000 base price of its MPDV van made on the same modular platform gives us hope that it will be an affordable option.

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