Daimler Truck starts series production of the Mercedes-Benz eEconic for inner-city municipal applications
Daimler Truck’s Mercedes-Benz eEconic for municipal use is going into series production at the Wörth site in the southern Rhineland-Palatinate. Within a short period of time, the second model of the battery-electric Mercedes-Benz trucks will roll off the production line in Wörth, following the series launch of the eActros for urban distribution transport in October 2021 (earlier post).
The eEconic was developed together with customers and, following a test series, has been undergoing practical trials with customers since May 2022. The first vehicle from series production will be handed over to Urbaser A/S, a company operating in the waste disposal sector in Denmark. Other customers have already opted for the series-production eEconic. The vehicles are to be delivered successively over the course of the year.
The eEconic will be manufactured in the existing Mercedes-Benz Special Trucks assembly line, in parallel and flexibly alongside the trucks that will be powered by internal combustion engines. After the vehicle has been largely assembled, the eEconic’s electrification continues in the Future Truck Center, where—just like the eActros—it is equipped with the electric drive components.
In several production steps, the high-voltage batteries and the charging unit are installed, among other things. Once all high-voltage components have been assembled, the entire system can be put into operation and the truck is ready to drive.
The Wörth site has set itself the goal, among other things, of continuously developing its workforce for the production of trucks with new drive systems. This also includes ensuring that employees who work on high-voltage vehicles such as the eEconic undergo specific training and development. Since 2018, employees at the Wörth site have been qualified for the production of electric trucks. To date, around 2,700 employees have been trained to handle high-voltage vehicles and components at the site's own training center. They have thus acquired the necessary knowledge and are optimally prepared for the new requirements in production.
The key technical specifications of the eEconic are largely identical to those of the eActros. The eEconic as a waste collection is designed to cover the majority of typical waste collection routes operated by an Econic in a single shift without intermediary charging. The electric drivetrain enables a level cab floor to be implemented—this facilitates moving through the cab and is particularly advantageous when the driver wishes to leave the vehicle through the folding door on the co-driver's side, well out of the way of the traffic.
A significant upgrade over the conventional Econic comes in the form of the modern and intuitive multimedia cockpit. A further equipment highlight is the panoramic glazing, and the coated and heated Thermocontrol windscreen also prevents weather-dependent misting of the screen, thus improving the view of the road around the vehicle. The screen also prevents cab interior from heating up in sunlight. A major safety benefit in urban traffic is the standard Sideguard Assist S1R and the 5th generation Active Brake Assist emergency braking assistant.
The largest truck assembly plant of Mercedes-Benz Trucks was founded in Wörth am Rhein in 1963 and produces the Mercedes-Benz Arocs and Atego trucks as well as the Actros, the world's most successful heavy-duty truck, for more than 20 years. In 2021, the series production of the battery-electric Mercedes-Benz eActros was launched. The Mercedes-Benz special trucks Econic, Unimog and Zetros are also built here. Up to 470 trucks customized according to customer requirements can leave Wörth plant every day.