Transitioning to battery electric trucks isn’t just about the vehicle—it’s about adapting your entire operation. Duty cycles, charging needs and range requirements are just a few of the things that need to be taken into consideration to make EVs work for your commercial application. Luckily, we’re beyond the first adopter’s phase of EVs and have answers to make the adoption of electric trucks successful.
“We have a lot of solid use cases that we’re experiencing in the marketplace right now—up and down the segment of trucks, like in medium-duty dry van type applications in which the trucks are doing a lot of starting and stopping, going 130 miles or less on a daily basis, and they sit overnight to support charging,” said Landre Eagleton, director of zero emissions consulting and solutions, Navistar.
He went on to explain that you have to look at how the vehicle will be used in operation to lay the groundwork for your equipment and infrastructure needs.
“Look at the times of the day it is being used and the average amount of distance that is being driven on a daily basis,” Eagleton said. “You want to identify those specific routes currently right now that lend themselves for electrification, and that’s where the opportunity is. It’s all about your data and getting visibility into your data.”
Eagleton stressed the importance of a partnership that goes beyond the vehicle purchase, involving understanding the unique aspects of each fleet’s operations. Analyzing specific route data, dwell times and traffic flow to optimize charging schedules and vehicle utilization is best done in collaboration with your EV partners of choice. And those “partners” might also be internal. The decision to go electric involves more stakeholders than traditional vehicle purchases. It’s crucial to involve everyone from sustainability and finance managers to fleet operations and drivers. Ensuring driver buy-in is particularly important for maximizing the performance and range of EVs.
Watch the video for more of Eagleton’s thoughts on his consultative approach to electric truck adoption.
Catch up on the first stop on the EV Fleet Road Map podcast
Click below to watch the first episode of The EV Fleet Roadmap: