Fuso eCanter officially hits the streets
Friday September 15 will go down in history as the day the first series-produced, all-electric light-duty truck arrived on the market.
Following extensive customer trials in Portugal and Germany since 2014, the Fuso eCanter was launched last week in New York City and will be delivered to customers in the United States (US), Europe and Japan starting this year.
Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) plans to deliver 500 units of this generation of the Fuso eCanter to customers within the next two years. Larger-scale production is intended to start in 2019.
“While everybody is talking about electric trucks, we are the first to actually commercialise a series-produced, all-electric truck. Having a long history in alternative drivetrains, we are proud to step into this new era,” says Marc Llistosella, president and CEO of MFTBC and head of Daimler Trucks Asia.
“Our Fuso eCanter comes with years of customer testing and the assurance of parts, services and warranty through our global Fuso dealership network,” he adds.
The Fuso eCanter has a range of 100 km and a load capacity up to three and a half 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.
In comparison with a conventional diesel truck, it is claimed to offer savings up to €1 000 (R15 823) per 10 000 km on operating costs.
The company’s first American commercial partner to employ the eCanter is UPS. “Electric trucks make our fleet both cleaner and quieter, adding to our already more than 8 500 alternative drivetrain vehicles in service today,” says Carlton Rose, president, global fleet maintenance and engineering, UPS.
“We have a long-standing global relationship with Daimler, and we welcome the opportunity to trial the Fuso eCanter as UPS continues to realise the benefits of electric trucks,” he adds.
Fuso will also supply a fleet of eCanter trucks to well-known New York-based non-profit organisations, including: Wildlife Conservation Society, New York Botanical Garden, Habitat for Humanity New York City and Big Reuse Brooklyn.
In May, MFTBC announced its first Japanese commercial customer for the eCanter, Seven-Eleven, which will add 25 units to its fleet.
In July, MFTBC celebrated the start of eCanter production in Tramagal, Portugal, for the European and US markets.