Mercedes-Benz starting small series production of heavy-duty Urban eTruck with electric drive this year for customer trials
Mercedes-Benz Trucks is bringing its all-electric heavy-duty truck (earlier post) to market in a small series this year. Following the presentation of the Urban eTruck with 25 t perm. GVW and a range of up to 200 km at the International Commercial Vehicle Show in 2016, the first vehicles will be delivered to customers this year.
The electric truck is based on a three-axle truck, with the entire conventional drivetrain replaced by an electrically driven rear axle with electric motors directly adjacent to the wheel hubs. Maximum output is 2 x 125 kW, while the peak torque is 2 x 500 N·m. In combination with the gearing, the torque at the wheel reaches 11,000 N·m.
The power is supplied by a battery pack consisting of three modules of lithium-ion batteries with a total capacity of 212 kWh. This results in a range of up to 200 km (124 miles)—normally enough for a typical day's delivery round. Depending on the desired range, the modular battery pack can be customized by adding or removing batteries.
The Urban eTruck is connected to the charging station using the Europe-wide standardized Combined Charging System (CCS) Type 2 connector. With a charging power of 100 kW, the fully discharged batteries are charged to 100% in two to three hours. (The system will support up to 150 kW.)
Following the world premiere in September 2016 at the International Commercial Vehicle Show, the customer reaction was outstanding. We are currently talking to around 20 potential customers from the disposal, foodstuffs and logistics sector. With the small series we are now rapidly taking the next step towards a series product. By 2020 we want to be on the market with the series generation.—Stefan Buchner, Head of Mercedes-Benz Trucks worldwide
The vehicle will initially go in a low two-figure number of units to customers in Germany, and later in Europe too, Buchner said.
The aim is to use actual application scenarios and requirement profiles together with the customer to further optimize the vehicle concept and the system configurations of the electric truck. The tests will include use in shift operation, charging times plus battery and range management.—Stefan Buchner
In order to be able to depict the various application possibilities, 18- and 25-tonne models will be equipped with a refrigerated body, as a dry box body and as a platform vehicle. Together with a special charger which takes into account the increased demands on a truck, the vehicles will be handed over to the customers to use for a period of twelve months and supported by Mercedes-Benz Trucks road testing department.
During this time the use profiles and areas of application will be recorded and the knowledge gained and expectations compared.
The Urban eTruck is part of a comprehensive electric initiative from Daimler Trucks. The light-duty electric truck Fuso eCanter will be in use in a global small series in 2017. Around 150 vehicles will be handed over to selected customers in Europe, Japan and the US. Daimler Trucks is thus covering a wide application portfolio of electric trucks all over the world.
Daimler Trucks is expecting the costs for the batteries of an all-electric truck to fall by a factor of 2.5 from 1997 to 2025— from €500/kWh to €200/kWh. At the same time the energy density of the available batteries in this period will rise by the same factor from 80 Wh/kg to 200 Wh/kg.