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Prime Mover Magazine

World’s first all-electric light-duty truck

Fuso, part of the Daimler Group, has celebrated the start of European series production of its all electric light-duty truck, the Fuso eCanter.

Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) celebrated the milestone with an event at the production plant in Tramagal, Portugal, where all eCanters for the European and US markets will be produced in line with the conventional Fuso Canter truck.

The enhanced version of the Fuso Canter E-Cell electric truck, which was on display at IAA Commercial Show in Germany, has already undergone a number of real-world trials in Portugal since 2014.

The first deliveries of the eCanters in Europe and the US are expected in August.

The eCanter has a range of 100km and a load capacity of two to three tonnes – depending on body and usage. The vehicle’s electric powertrain contains six high voltage lithium ion battery packs with 420 V and 13.8 kWh each.

The Portuguese government has been supporting the development of the eCanter since 2010, with the President of the Portuguese Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, joining members of the government, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck Europe and MFTBC executives at the event.

“With today’s start of production of the eCanter, we become the first global manufacturer to produce an all-electric truck in series," said MFTBC CEO and Head of Daimler Trucks Asia, Marc Llistosella.

"From now on we can address the growing demand for locally emission free delivery trucks in Mega-Cities. We already received the first customer orders and will mark the global launch of this truck in one of the most iconic Mega-Cities, in New York, this September.

In May, MFTBC announced Seven-Eleven as its first commercial customer in the Japanese market, which will reportedly be operating 25 units of the new eCanter in its fleet within this year. The first charging station for trucks were unveiled in May and production started at the Kawasaki plant in Japan on 7 July.

The Portugal event symbolised the beginning of manufacturing of the eCanter outside of Japan, a milestone that MFTBC says begins paving the way for the company’s first 100 per cent electric commercial vehicle.

Only the electric-powertrain specific components will be installed in specific boxes along the production line The battery packs are being delivered from the 100 per cent Daimler subsidiary, Accumotive, in Kamenz, Germany.

In comparison with a conventional diesel truck, it reportedly offers savings up to €1,000 (ca. $1,471) per 10,000km on operating costs.

Fuso announced last year that the eCanter would be involved in local trials later this year.

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