The Bollinger B2 Electric Pickup Is Real–But What’s It Like?
Although the Bollinger B2 electric truck can sometimes get lost in the Tesla-Rivian rivalry, it certainly looks like a serious off-roader. And its specs appear to back it up. But being priced higher than the Cybertruck or R1T, the B2 and B1 may have seemed like luxury toys. And even with the cheapest Cybertruck’s production delay, the B2 will hit the market at the same time as the other, still-cheaper Cybertrucks. However, Carwow’s Mat Watson recently spent some time looking the Bollinger B2 over, inside and out. And it’s clear this electric pickup has its own charms and advantages.
The Bollinger B2’s exterior design
The Bollinger B2 comes from company founder Robert Bollinger’s desire to have a utilitarian electric pickup truck for his farm. Bollinger wanted something simplistic, and because of his industrial designer background, that’s what he and his company created.
Watson compares the B2 and B1 to the Land Rover Defender, a similarly-boxy off-road vehicle that also comes with square aluminum body-panels. And while Bollinger wasn’t expressly inspired by the Defender, seeking a similar vision meant the B2 ended up looking similar. And the boxy design was definitely intentional. With an eye on utility, Bollinger wanted the B2’s body to be easy to repair and replace. Hence, the rectangular shape.
The Bollinger B2’s interior
That sense of simplicity carries into the interior. There’s no navigation system or even a radio. Watson states that Bollinger wanted to keep the truck as free from obsolescence as possible. And considering how quickly built-in nav systems look dated, the company may be onto something. Watson also adds that most people just use their phones anyway.
But Bollinger goes even further with their design. The windows slide, they don’t go up or down. The climate-control vents rotate manually. And the center armrest is basically a table with a metal box on top. It can feel to some rather spartan.
However, everything feels well-made and tightly-screwed down. The tables that run down the B2’s center are made of real wood, for instance. The seats have good bolstering and are heated. There’s full-length LED lighting. The interior switches are knurled and made of real metal. Even the window-latch mechanism feels solid.
In fact, Watson claims the whole truck feels like a classic truck. Something akin to an old FJ40, International Scout, or, indeed, a Land Rover Defender. And considering how popular such vehicles are nowadays, that’s a good thing from a design perspective.
The question of safety
Unfortunately, there is also the safety aspect to consider. Although not made of stainless steel, the B2’s exterior does recall the Tesla Cybertruck’s. And the Tesla truck’s shape has been raising safety concerns both in the US and in Europe. And then there’s the interior.
While the Bollinger B2’s interior is well-made, stylish, and functional, it also lacks airbags. Much like a classic truck. That’s likely because, as Watson details, the B2 isn’t in the same class as pickups like the F-150. Just like the Cybertruck may be, the B2 appears to be classified as a Class 2 or even Class 3 truck. And if that’s the case, Bollinger won’t have to crash-test the B2. Which means, just like the classic trucks it apes, the B2 won’t have airbags.
However, the B2’s design is more than just a question of style and ease of manufacturing. It comes with quite a few features that might just make it a competitive electric truck.
Will the Bollinger B2 be able to work as a pickup truck?
We’ve previously quoted the B2’s payload and towing capacities, but we weren’t able to go into significant detail about its other features. But thanks to Carwow, we can.
The underbody, for example, is completely protected. Bollinger claimed that the B2 and B1 were meant for off-roading, and it’s clear the company is serious about it. The B2’s suspension arms are completely flat, which lowers the risk of damage and rock hang-ups. And the B2’s 20” ground clearance is in part due to its ‘gear reduction hubs’, aka portal axles.
Both the B2 and B1 also feature completely pass-through storage, making loading and transporting long objects like lumbar or skis significantly easier. And, just like the Jeep Wrangler, the doors and roof are completely removable. In addition, the glass roof panels can be replaced with solid black ones. Finally, the B2’s design also makes converting the truck to RHD fairly straightforward.
The Bollinger B2 won’t necessarily be quick to charge. With a 100-kW charger, the batteries can get up to 80% capacity in an hour. However, it is clear that significant thought and engineering has gone into this electric truck. Buyers won’t necessarily appreciate the lack of navigation, radio, or airbags. But as an electric off-road farming workhorse, the Bollinger B2 does have a lot to offer.