Windsor-Essex well-represented at zero-emission vehicle reveal

Mark Brown/Blackburn News

The unveiling of a long-awaited automotive prototype helped put Windsor-Essex centre-stage last week.

Following three years of design and testing, Project Arrow, the first Canadian-built, all-electric, zero-emissions vehicle, was revealed at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The prototype was made possible in part to the support of Windsor-Essex suppliers, along with virtual-reality innovations being created in the region.

Stephen MacKenzie, President and CEO of Invest WindsorEssex (IWE), said the show was an excellent opportunity to sell the region as an ideal place for automotive innovation.

“This year, Invest WindsorEssex is proud to have joined APMA [the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association] as the Official eXtended Reality Partner for Project Arrow, further showcasing our region as the Automobility Capital of Canada and a leader in next-generation vehicle production,” said MacKenzie.

Those contributions were also recognized by Flavio Volpe, APMA President.

“The IWE contribution to Project Arrow was critical in bringing the original idea to life through extended reality and in providing additional leadership to ensure innovative local technology found itself on the concept prototype buildout,” said Volpe. “We could not have done this without them.”

The vehicle is the answer to the challenge made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for Canada to go all-zero emissions by 2050. In 2020, a team from Carleton University was chosen to create the design for Project Arrow. The designs were later enhanced in Windsor-Essex at the IWE’s Virtual Reality CAVE.

With the need for an engine or a gasoline tank absent on Project Arrow, designers made use of the additional space to create a state-of-the-art interior. An emphasis was also placed on autonomous driving.

The prototype is now set for a tour of automotive gatherings, to take place throughout 2023.