Trucks

Mercedes EQV Electric Van Debuts with 250 Mile Range

Electric trucks are the holy grail of the EV market. Typically replacing high-pollution diesel trucks that idle in heavily populated urban environments for hours and hours every day, their harmful diesel particulate emissions do more medical harm per vehicle than almost anything else out there. A close second, though, may be commercial delivery vans like the ones employed by companies like Amazon to deliver packages. If we could convert those vehicles to electric power, we’d be able to massively reduce the amount of carbon emissions in major cities– which is precisely why Mercedes’ new Concept EQV electric van is such a big deal. And it is a big deal. The Mercedes EQV offers up nearly 250 miles on each charge, with an extra 60 miles available for every 15 minutes of fast-...

First Electric Freightliner Trucks Begin Production

Depending on who you believe, there will be more than 300,000 electric work trucks hitting the highways and byways of the world in the next three years. Companies like Kenworth, Mack, and Volvo have all made moves recently in a bid to gain a “first mover” market advantage, but you shouldn’t count out the Daimler-owned (read: Mercedes-Benz) Freightliner brand just yet, because the first of its all-electric Class 8 trucks destined for customers have already been built. “This milestone in electric (vehicles) is important as both today and tomorrow’s technology is progressing. Our purpose is resolute – we build for our customers,” said Roger Nielsen, president and CEO of DTNA. His hope is that his company’s new EVs will allow transport companies to keep operating in maj...

Protean 360+ Concept Makes Big Buses Nimble

Protean is best known for building compact and powerful electric motors that fit inside a vehicle’s wheels. It’s a fun concept that could, in theory, allow car designers to get really wild with styling and packaging choices that simply aren’t options with an internal combustion engine under the hood. This week, though, Protean unveiled a new concept that– well, it’s so good it just seems obvious. Meet 360+, an all-new take on suspension design that could allow big, bulky city buses to positively dance through densely packed, urban environments. It’s super clever, and looks like this …   … which is to say that each corner of the bus’ suspension is its own, fully contained suspension system and drive train that allows the bus to prac...

Infographic Charts the Rise of AI at Volvo CE

In case the launch of the flagship Polestar sub-brand and the acquisition and subsequent electrification of the storied Lotus Cars brand didn’t clue you in, Volvo is dead serious about being a major player in the electric future. If you’re a car nerd, like me, you’d be forgiven for thinking of Volvo as a sort of “underdog” in this fight, of course– but, then, you’d be forgetting about Volvo’s real empire: big-a** commercial trucks. It’s there, in the CE division, that you will find some of the most amazing innovations in the business. That weird bucket thing up there? That’s Volvo’s fully autonomous, battery-electric, driverless hauler, the HX1. The wheel-loader that’s, well, loading it up? It’s a diesel-electric...

Mack to Build Electric Garbage Trucks for NYC

With the proliferation of electric cars and the improvement of emissions-curbing technology in recent years, it shouldn’t surprise you to hear that short-haul municipal vehicles are by far the heaviest polluters in most major cities. What’s more, studies have shown supplanting short-haul diesel machines that spend most of their time in city centers, spewing black smoke every block as they stop and start, is a far more effective way to curb pollution than replacing long-haul trucks. Electric city buses, for example, have been particularly effective at cutting a city’s carbon emissions. Beyond that, then, the next logical step should be the adoption of electric garbage trucks, and heavy duty truck builder Mack is all ready to sell them provide. Recently, the New York City S...

Nissan Launches Electric Ice Cream Truck … for Kids!

It’s the first day of summer, and nothing says summer quite like the sound of the ice cream truck pulling up to a park full of kids. As fun and wholesome as that image may be, however, having kids hang out around the potentially harmful emissions of those old-school ice cream trucks could aggravate issues like asthma– and that’s a big problem. Enter: Nissan, who just showed off an electric Nissan NV200 van that’s been specially converted– into a zero emissions ice cream truck! “This project is a perfect demonstration of Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility strategy,” explains Kalyana Sivagnanam, managing director of Nissan Motor Ltd., Great Britain. She says that the Japanese company is, “applying more than a decade of EV experience and progress in batter...

309,000 Electric Trucks Expected to Hit the Road by 2023

Companies like Volvo, Tesla, and Navistar are pushing hard to develop commercial-grade electric trucks, but it’s hard to imagine how electric trucks– which still require more downtime for recharging than ICE-powered trucks do for refueling– might be a profitable choice for fleet operators. Despite that, a recent report from research firm, TechNavio, concluded that the global electric truck market would grow to more than 309,000 fully electric and hybrid electric trucks by 2023. Their reasoning is based on one thing: cheap batteries. “The continuously reducing battery prices are expected to boost electric truck demand in the forthcoming years,” reads a sample of the report, distributed by TechNavio. “The battery cost is decreasing continuously owing to th...

Saab Scania Announces Modular, Electric, Autonomous Bus

Fans of Swedish automaker Saab have something to be happy about this week, because the brand’s trucking division, Scania, has just revealed a radical new transportation concept that promises to change the way governments and municipalities think about mass transit. It’s called the NXT, and it has all of the fun, hip buzzwords going around the auto industry these days– that’s right, kids. This one’s modular, electric, AND autonomous! That’s a lot to take in, for sure, but it comes down to a fairly simple concept. Basically, Scania is going to produce axles that are, in themselves, self-contained vehicles. Think of them like giant Segways, if you want. Between these two axles (or, presumably, three or four axles), a fleet will be able to put whatever they ...

Toyota Partners With Kenworth To Develop Next Generation Hydrogen Trucks #CES2019

Toyota and Kenworth have taken the wraps off a collaboration that will see the two companies jointly developing 10 zero-emission trucks powered by Toyota's hydrogen fuel cell energy storage technology.

Volvo Reveals Autonomous Truck Concept

Despite some very public setbacks beyond its control, Volvo continues to push forward with both autonomous and electric truck concepts. The latest concept from the Swedish carmaker takes Tesla’s semi concept and goes one better, eliminating the drivers’ compartment– and, as a consequence, the driver– altogether. “The full potential of the transport industry is yet to be seen. Everything suggests that the global need for transportation will continue to significantly increase in the coming decade,” says Claes Nilsson, President Volvo Trucks. He sees this new concept as a response to a global increase in demand for shipping coupled with a shortage of new long-haul drivers entering the field. “If we are to meet this demand (for shipping services) in a sustai...

CNG Trucks are Hauling Without Emissions

Almost a half trillion dollars worth of goods are imported in the US through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach every year. Almost all the containers that arrive at those ports are hauled relatively short distances to freight distribution facilities located inland by special purpose drayage trucks designed specifically for such short-haul work. At those freight terminals, the containers are hooked up to the long distance tractors that will deliver them to every part of America. With so much cargo coming in, tens of thousands of trips between the ports and the terminals take place all day every day. With rare exceptions, all those drayage trucks are equipped with diesel engines that spew out tremendous quantities of carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur oxide emissions, making th...

Greenwashing Deforestation w/ T-log Autonomous Truck

I didn’t think it could be done, but here we are. It’s 2018, and a Swedish company has found a way to greenwash deforestation by removing the two most wasteful elements on the trucking side of the logging industry: the diesel engine, and the human driver. When Einride first showed its trucking concepts last year, they were aimed more towards commercial goods shipping that logging. Back then, the company claimed it would have its first completed truck available to customers in the fall– that came and went, obviously. Still, it’s worth noting that the progress being made on Sweden’s “unlimited range” electric highway system should make Einride’s pitch and product development a bit easier to put into practice. “Such roads will allow (electric ve...

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