Mercedes-Benz Trucks Australia is getting excited about the imminent arrival of its first eActros fully electric trucks, which it says have just come off the production line in Germany and are now Down Under bound with the local subsidiary in Australia and New Zealand eagerly awaiting the arrival of their first all electric Benz trucks, which are set to begin a local validation program when they arrive.
The zero emission eActros models will be in Australia and New Zealand and on the validation program this year according to the company adn will be joined by an all-electric eEconic, which will also be subject to a validation program here in Australia.
a total of four eActros and one eEconic electric trucks will according to Mercedes, operate with a wide range of fleets in Australia, while one eActros will be put through its paces across the ‘dutch’ in the Shaky Isles.
Both the eActros and the eEconic have received full approval to operate on Australian roads, as both have been designed to fit within the ludicrously out of step and antiquated Australian 2.5metre width restrictions. The fact that the 2.55 metre wide Benz electric trucks have been granted permission to operate without restrictions or any specific permits, potentially means some light has been seen by local authorities that may see this ridiculous Australian Design Rule restriction rolled back sometime soon. At the very least it means that we might see some sensible exemptions for trucks and buses that will allow the most advanced machines from Europe and the USA running on our roads and delivering better efficiency and safety.
The focus of the eActros says Mercedes, is for heavy-duty short radius distribution and development trucks, which have already been working away near-silently in select fleets in Europe since 2018.
The eEconic has been in operation in Europe since last May and the Australia and New Zealand models will be used for waste collection in urban areas.
The eActros and eEconic are largely built on the same lines as diesel-powered trucks at the Mercedes-Benz Trucks factory in Worth, with this flexibility ensuring efficient production says Mercedes.
The trucks are then transferred to the Future Truck Centre area, where they are equipped with their high voltage electric drive components.
Globally, Daimler Truck says it is committed to advancing battery electric technology for trucks and buses, but is also working on hydrogen fuel cell technology that is well suited to Australian requirements of longer distances at higher weights.
While hydrogen fuel cell trucks are currently being tested and developed, they are still some years away from being showrooms and likely not to be available until around the end of this decade.
Mercedes-Benz Trucks says it is keen to move forward with battery electric technology, but emphasised it is also continuing to help traditional internal combustion engine customers drive down their emissions.
Mercedes-Benz Trucks underlined that it introduced Australia’s first full range of Euro 6 heavy trucks with the new Actros in 2016 and its reputation for fuel efficiency is now well known across the industry. It says that further improvements for its diesel Actros engines are also on the way soon.