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Fuso eCanter: Daimler delivers the first electric trucks

Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation (MFTBC), part of the Daimler Trucks groupĀ  a global market leader with truck brands such as Freightliner, Mercedes-Benz and Fuso – has announced the worldwide launch of the eCanter Fuso in New York.

Daimler announced that United Parcel Service (UPS) will be the first US commercial customer for its new eCanter electric truck. The company expects to deliver 500 units of this generation to customers in the next two years and large-scale production is expected to begin in 2019.

UPS will introduce three eCanter models to its fleet, while four other non-profit organizations established in New York will have eight electric trucks. These will have an autonomy close to 100 kilometers between loads.

“The game has started,” said Mark Llistosella, Head of Daimler Trucks Asia. The Fuso eCanter is a relatively small urban delivery truck, although Llistosella noted that the larger Class 7 electric trucks are coming and also indicated that Daimler will show a larger electric model at the Tokyo Motor Show in October.

When everyone is talking about electric trucks, we are the first to produce and market a fully electric series.

Daimler’s Mitsubishi Fuso division began manufacturing eCanter electric trucks at plants in Portugal and Japan earlier this year, in charge of assembling vehicles for the European and American markets.

Llistosella himself stated that Daimler is leasing the trucks to UPS “because within two years we know there will be a leap in the technology level, which will produce batteries with greater reach, lower cost and less volume.”

Battery costs, currently between $ 180 and $ 200 a kilowatt, could fall to as low as $ 100, Llistosella said. “This is the key to increasing sales of commercial electric trucks.”

The company has limited sales of its eCanter to about 500 units during the first two years of production in anticipation of the new improved batteries, said Llistosella, who stressed that “the market demand is much higher.”

The eCanter uses a permanent synchronous electric motor with a power of 185 kW and a torque of 380 Nm. The power is transferred to the rear axle by a single speed transmission. The vehicle has an autonomy of 100 kilometers and a load capacity of up to three and a half tons, depending on the body of the vehicle. The vehicle’s electric train contains six high-voltage lithium-ion batteries of 420 V and 14 kWh each, with a total capacity of 70 kWh. Compared to a conventional diesel truck, according to the company, it offers savings of up to 1,000 euros per 10,000 kilometers of operating costs.

Competitors like Tesla do not lose weight and recently Elon Musk tweeted that the Silicon Valley company would show an electric truck on Oct. 26 in Hawthorne, California. “It’s worth seeing this beast in person,” Musk said. “It’s unreal.” The North American multinational is also working on autonomous trucks.

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