Mercedes-Benz Trucks has confirmed it will deliver its first orders of its revolutionary all-electric truck, the Urban eTruck later this year.

The eTruck is a 25 tonne GVM electric model with a range of 200km with a payload of 12.8 tonne, unveiled at last year’s Hannover International Commercial Vehicle Show in 2016.

Global Mercedes-Benz Trucks boss, Stefan Buchner says there is interest from at least 20 customers in the new technology.

“The customer reaction was outstanding. We are currently talking to around 20 potential customers from the disposal, foodstuffs and logistics sector,” he said.

“By 2020 we want to be on the market with the series generation. The vehicle will initially go in a low two-figure number of units to customers in Germany – and later in Europe too. It will be used in real transportation applications there.”

Mercedes says the idea will be to work with its customers for real world R&D, confirming the vehicles will be handed over for 12 month periods with the support of the road testing department.

“The aim is to use actual application scenarios and requirement profiles together with the customer to further optimise the vehicle concept and the system configurations of the electric truck. The tests will include use in shift operation, charging times plus battery and range management,” Buchner said.

“When it comes to future technological issues we have set the standards in the sector, for instance with regard to electric and autonomous driving plus connectivity.”

The Urban eTruck is part of a comprehensive electric initiative from Daimler Trucks. The light-duty electric truck Fuso eCanter will be in use in a global small series in 2017. Around 150 vehicles will be handed over to selected customers in Europe, Japan and the USA. Daimler Trucks is thus covering a wide application portfolio of electric trucks all over the world.