First EV Fire Truck

Dave Nichols
Jun 2022
The all new Rosenbauer RTX fire truck is debuting in Los Angeles as America's first electric fire truck. Could it also be America’s first electric family RV? Let’s find out.
Firefighter in front of a red fire truck

The Rosenbauer RTX Comes to Los Angeles

So, you’re in the market for an all-electric family SUV or recreational vehicle but you want something…bigger. How about the new Rosenbauer RTX Fire Truck? It is certainly very big and has plenty of room for ladder storage as well as 1,000 feet of fire hose and gear. It comfortably seats seven, has all-wheel drive, and is 173-inches long. It’s a breeze to park as it is only 92.5-inches wide. Did we mention it comes with your choice of a 500- or 750-gallon water tank? Just the thing for group showers at the RV park. The water pump can empty the 750 gallons of water (or margaritas) in just one minute.

The Los Angeles Fire Department recently announced that it has received the first of these all-electric fire trucks and it is in service at Station 82. It is only the fourth EV fire truck in the world. Fire Chief Kristin Crowley unveiled the truck at a press briefing saying, “This electric engine has many benefits, and first and foremost it will reduce noise. And, when we talk about our firefighter health and overall well-being, it’ll reduce diesel emissions to nothing.” That’s because it utilizes two electric motors and a 132-kWh battery pack that produces 360 kW which is equivalent to 490 horsepower.

According to the manufacturer, the RTX is, “purely electric and therefore emission-free, short-range operations are not a problem.” For firefighting chores at greater distances, the truck has a 3.0-liter, 300-horsepower BMW diesel range extender on board to recharge its batteries or power a water pump when required.

The Rosenbauer website proclaims, “This isn’t a fire truck redesign, it’s a reinvention. Every square inch reimagined. Safety. Maneuverability. Agility. Power. The mission was sustainability of people, property, and planet. The result is the ultimate firefighting machine.” But will it work as an all-electric family RV?

The company brochure attests that, “the RX is only 92.5 inches wide, which ensures emergency crews can reach their destinations quickly and reliably, even when traveling on narrow streets and through tight passages. The two electric motors ensure unprecedented longitudinal dynamics for a fire truck. This enables rapid acceleration, especially in heavy traffic. The drive design, with its low center of gravity and balanced, even axle load distribution, provides important handling stability in every situation, reducing the risk of accidents. In addition, the newly developed wheel suspension facilitates a larger steering angle; this considerably reduces the turning radius, especially in an all-wheel drive system.” In other words, yes, this would make a great EV RV for you and the entire family.

Best of all, the RTX will only set you back $1.2 million dollars. That means you could sell your house and use the money as a down payment for the ultimate family RV with the benefit of being able to put out forest fires in national parks should they occur. The only setback is that, at present, they only come in fire engine red. For more info, visit this article on the Rosenbauer website.

A young couple admiring the forest and trees next to their RAV4 Hybrid

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