The AgRover is a three-wheeled utility vehicle that provides transport and power for farmers and other agricultural businesses. As well as being able to haul goods over difficult terrain, the truck can be used to power attachments and implements such as water pumps, maize grinders, generators, threshers, planters and plows. The AgRover design allows for it to be manufactured locally from commonly available materials in sub-Saharan Africa, to prevent import and transport costs of the product and of replacement parts.
The AgRover was developed by Purdue University students through design projects and in partnership with ACREST (African Centre for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technology), an NGO in Cameroon.
Distributors / Implementing Organizations
MAPS (Mobile Agricultural Power Solutions)
The manufacturer has a dedicated workshop in Lagos, Nigeria. Prototypes have been built in 6 different countries as the AgRover can be manufactured locally using locally available materials.
Intellectural Property Type
User Provision Model
Local companies (partially owned and supported by MAPS-International) will manufacture, market and sell the vehicles. The primary buyer is expected to be a farming co-op, large farm, business or local government. Small-holder farmers are expected to rent the vehicle from these direct buyers. Quotes for the AgRover can be requested on MAPS' website.
Distributions to Date Status
As of 2020, 16 AgRovers have been built in 6 countries.
The AgRover is a three-wheeled vehicle capable of navigating terrain both on and off road while carrying a payload of up to 1000 kg. Its design translates into a top speed of 20 mph. Testing showed fuel economies of 40 to 60 mpg (18 to 26 km/l) for the 10 hp diesel engine option. The truss-shaped chassis is designed to be lightweight and strong with options for utility attachments. The frame is made of commonly available angle iron. The suspension on all three wheels reduces the high stresses in the frame and a trailing arm with a torsion bar is used for the rear suspension, providing high roll stiffness to reduce the likelihood of rollover situations. Specifications:
|Empty weight||< 500 kg|
|Engine||4 - 8 kW, gasoline or diesel|
|Transmission||4 or 5 speed + reverse|
|Top speed||20 mph (configurable)|
|Length / Width||3.7 m / 1.45 m|
|Bed dimensions||0.99 m wide x 1.9 m long|
|Brakes||Hydraulic brakes on each wheel|
|Suspension||Coil springs and dampers on all wheels and rear torsion bar|
Technical support is currently supplied by the manufacturer.
The AgRover is designed so that replacement parts are available locally.
Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters
The manufacturer aims to save farmers time and money on tasks like transportation, food processing and light tillage. With higher efficiency the farmers can produce more, therefore increasing income and food supply. The manufacturer also aims to improve local economies through the creation of jobs in manufacturing, sales, rental and maintenance of the product.
Vetted Performance Status
PIND (Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta), in collaboration with cocoa farmers in Ondo State, MAPS and CA-NIG (Conservation Alliance Nigeria) conducted field trials and assessments on the AgRover. The trials identified the AgRover as a good solution for transporting farming products more efficiently over difficult terrain at lower costs to smallholder farmers and transport service providers. It found that smallholder farmers saved ~62% in transport costs per 65 kg bag of produce versus using a motorcycle, while reducing the number of trips. The vehicle performance has also been assessed in the U.S. through competitions and university trials. During student design competitions hosted by the Institute for Affordable Transportation, the AgRover was tested carrying loads of 1200 lbs through mud, hills and fields. On a Purdue University research farm, a prototype was used daily during the autumn with no noted problems and another vehicle was driven over 60 miles with different loadings to determine fuel mileage.Interview with designer
Main hazards involve possible actions of the driver during product operation.
Complementary Technical Systems
Hitches, water pumps, maize grinders, generators, threshers, plows can be added, along with several tools traditionally attached to tractors and farming utility vehicles.