Power your Purpose

The very best project in each discipline at the Best Design Awards is awarded the supreme, Purple Pin for work that truly raises the bar for New Zealand design.

Timothy Allen PDINZ, UBCO

Value of Design: Power Your Purpose
Product: UBCO

The Client

Consumer and commercial purchasers. UBCO is a New Zealand company that manufactures and exports electric, utility motorcycles.  Leveraging the benefits of modern electric drive and battery technology, UBCO’s platform includes on and off-road transport (2×2), portable power, accessories, and subscription software.

The Challenge

To design a business across product, brand and culture capable of creating a global market in the EV sector, with a unique New Zealand flavour.

The Solution

UBCO’S product has evolved from an off-road-only farm bike concept to a technology platform of connected utility electric vehicles and enabled products and services, such as portable power, software, and accessories. They fulfil both B2C and B2B demands and categories. 

Likewise, they have developed a vertically integrated hardware, firmware and software stack for full fleet management that enables vehicle tracking and control, on and off-road.

UBCO’s global digital marketing effort utilises product ambassadors and social media to grow awareness of their brand and products, build a community of fans and grow a family of users.

UBCO is also innovating the way they sell products: vehicle subscription enables customers to pay a monthly subscription for the bike or battery, while UBCO retains ownership and responsibility for the product. This includes at the end of life through to a product stewardship programme.

They are also growing a fleet sales channel with large-scale deployments. These range across food delivery, freight and postal, agriculture, tourism and defence - to name a few.

Judges’ Comments

UBCO impressed the judges with the level of integrated thinking required to produce a modern EV on an international scale. With a clear purpose to provide power to move, they are clearly focused on helping people move smarter and safer, as well as making the world a better place at the same time. The design process doesn’t just concentrate on the product but how the product is sold and fleet management as well. The company has become an impressive international business operating in eight countries with a global online presence.

An incredibly complex design challenge executed elegantly that is making a big design impact on purpose.