German auto major, Daimler has announced that on December 20, 2018, the company's subsidiary Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) has handed over the first medium-duty Freightliner eM2 to US customer Penske Truck Leasing Corporation in Los Angeles. The company will operate the electric truck in local distribution traffic in the Northwest Pacific and in California.
In 2019, Penske Truck Leasing Corporation will receive in total 20 fully-electric Freightliner trucks: ten medium-duty eM2 and ten eCascadia for heavy-duty transportation. In total the Freightliner’s innovation fleet will include 30 vehicles. The series production is planned for 2021.
Brian Hard, president and CEO, Penske Truck Leasing said: “Penske is honoured to be the first company to put this new medium-duty electric truck into service. I commend and thank Roger Nielsen and his team at Daimler Trucks North America for their outstanding collaboration and spirit of co-creation with us over the last nine months to bring this innovative technology to market. Penske is committed to providing the most effective vehicle technologies to our customers and driving innovation and sustainability when it comes to mobility.”
Martin Daum, Daimler Board Member responsible for Trucks and Buses, said: “We aim to be frontrunners with electric trucks just as we are with conventional trucks – and we deliver on this objective once again. With the hand-over of our Freightliner eM2 to Penske Truck Leasing Corporation, we now test electric trucks in all segments in day-to-day operations with our clients worldwide. When it comes to innovations the demands of our customers are pivotal for us. Together we develop solutions for the future of trucks.
He further said, "We’ve got news coming already in January: At Las Vegas’ 2019 Consumer Electric Show (CES), we are going to announce further commitment of our next steps in another key technology: automated driving.”
Electrifying urban traffic
According to Daimler, the hand-over to Penske Truck Leasing is the first step towards electrification of the urban distribution traffic of the United States. The German major says the company (Penske Truck) is a leading global transportation services provider operating more than 270,000 vehicles and serving customers from more than 1,000 locations in North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Asia.
Daimler says the Freightliner eM2 has a range of 230 miles (370km) and is perfect for last-mile delivery services. The batteries charge up to 80 percent in about 60 minutes, thus providing 325kWh usable capacity for up to 480-peak horsepower.
The Freightliner eCascadia is based on the Cascadia, the heavy-duty long-distance truck (class 8, 80,000 lb. gross combined weight rating) in the North American market. At start of series production, the eCascadia will have up to 730-peak horsepower. The batteries provide 550kWh usable capacity, a range of up to 250 miles (402km) and will have the ability to charge up to 80 percent (providing a range of 200 miles/321km) in about 90 minutes.
Gesa Reimelt, head of E-mobility Group Daimler Trucks & Buses, said: “Early on, Daimler has started electrifying its trucks. Today, customers in the US, Japan and Europe already operate our battery-driven trucks almost noiseless and locally free of emissions. Our light-weight Fuso eCanter which is in series production and our near-series heavy-duty truck Mercedes-Benz eActros. In collaboration with our clients, we are now going to speed up developing our electric Freightliner models eCascadia and eM2 to optimise them for tough everyday operations – technologically and economically. Here we benefit from our global sharing of knowledge and experience within our E-Mobility Group. It pools all of our e-activities in one organisation - independently of brand, region and vehicle segment.”