Freightliner eM2 medium-duty electric truck rolls out at ACT Expo

Freightliner eM2 medium-duty electric truck rolls out at ACT Expo

The battery electric truck will roll into pick-up and delivery applications with more vocational configurations on the way.

Freightliner unveiled the series production eM2 for pick-up and delivery applications, which is ready to order and will start production in fall this year at the Daimler Truck North America (DTNA) Portland truck manufacturing plant. At the same time, Freightliner has introduced an “innovation” eM2 medium-duty truck with the goal to learn from real world customer experiences in vocational applications.

“Our vocational ‘innovation’ vehicles are designed to set the stage to expand eM2 coverage into additional customer applications in the future,” said David Carson, senior vice president, sales and marketing, DTNA.

Built on the Freightliner M2 106 Plus truck platform and introduced a year after the debut of the series production Freightliner eCascadia Class 8 tractor, the Class 6/7 eM2 features a proprietary, fully integrated, battery electric Detroit ePowertrain, including Detroit eAxles and batteries. The vehicle utilizes electric motors with a two-speed transmission directly onto the drive axles. The eM2 underwent extensive summer and winter testing as well as rough road and crash tests to be able to operate under various conditions and temperatures.

“For pick-up and delivery applications, the eM2 has a typical range of 180 miles for the Class 6 version and 250 miles for Class 7,” said Rakesh Aneja, vice president and chief of eMobility, DTNA.

Multiple battery size options are available:

• Class 6 single motor: provides up to 190 continuous HP, a 194 kWh battery and a typical range of 180 miles on one charge;
• Class 7 dual-motor: provides up to 255 continuous HP, a 291 kWh battery and a typical range of 250 miles on one charge;
• An electric power takeoff (ePTO) option is available, enabling a choice of refrigeration units that can run on energy from the vehicle’s high voltage battery.

Freightliner-em2-medium-duty-electric-truck-event-1-1400
At a pre-show launch event, Rakesh Aneja, vice president and chief of eMobility, DTNA, took to the mic to talk eM2.

In terms of advanced driver assistance systems, the Freightliner eM2 features proprietary battery side impact protection and the Detroit Assurance suite of safety systems. The following safety features now come standard with the eM2 and elevate the level of safety in the medium-duty segment:
• Active Brake Assist (ABA) 5.0;
• Tailgate Warning;
• Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) to 0 MPH;
• Lane Departure Warning;
• Intelligent High-Beams;
• Automatic Wipers/Headlamps; and
• Side Guard Assist.

Detroit Connect offers new eServices and provides charging information and vehicle health data in real time. The eM2 allows fleet managers to:

• Plan new routes with real-time range prediction, updating automatically for traffic, weather, topography, and other conditions;
• Monitor battery health and state-of-charge for multiple units in real-time; and
• Collect data for post-trip analysis reports, which can help coach drivers to maximize energy efficiency and battery lifespan.

DTNA will begin running an eM2 vocational “innovation” program with leaders in the Truck Equipment Manufacturing industry and their customers to focus on providing zero-emission solutions for the unique requirements of vocational customers and applications. This program particularly targets the utility, sweeper, dump, towing and recovery, and refuse segments and will be packaged and designed for maximum frame space utilization with minimal impact on upfit, especially in the utility segment. The goal with the eM2 vocational “innovation” program is to offer operators the familiarity and experience of the M2 chassis while allowing for consistency and ease in the transition to battery electric operations.

The eM2 vocational “innovation” vehicles are validating new target specifications with work truck customers in the real world (actual production vehicle specifications are subject to ongoing tests):

• Up to 330 kWh of usable battery capacity;
• Target of 150 miles range, depending on the application;
• Wheelbases between 155-inch and 220-in.;
• Only 10-in. of back-of-cab protrusion space for battery;
• Both electric and mechanical ePTO options to support hydraulic and battery-powered body equipment using the vehicle’s HV battery;
• A mechanical PTO option offers flexibility, lowers barriers to entry, and allows a faster-to-market eM2 for the vocational customer. The PTO is the same interface as customers use today with their diesel Freightliner M2s, allowing for ease of integration and operator acceptance.

Freightliner-em2-electric-medium-duty-truck-innovation-vocational-1400
The “innovation” eM2 was at the event sporting a man-bucket body.

Detroit eConsultants are able to connect the dots for customers including right sizing infrastructure, choosing ideal chargers, navigating rebates and incentives, assisting with site selection, providing connectivity insights, and offering photovoltaic and energy storage options, and more. They also introduce customers to the comprehensive line of Detroit eFill Chargers, evaluate duty cycles, and help identify ways to put eM2 trucks to work efficiently. Detroit’s Charger Management System (CMS) provides fleet managers with the insights to understand their fleets’ energy consumption patterns and create a charging schedule that reduces cost per mile.

Continuing the support service, more than 90 percent of the Freightliner dealers have completed a proprietary EV Masters Sales training course. Those dealers are fully equipped to answer EV questions and evaluate the best use cases for eCascadia and eM2 applications, as well as identify potentially relevant EV rebates in a specialized database.

More than 1,400 dealership technicians are trained today in high-voltage (HV) safety as dealers are proactively preparing to service eCascadia and eM2. This is supported by DTNA’s fleet and field service managers who are working hand in hand with customers and network partners. DTNA Parts is ramping up stock on eMobility components, leveraging its 10 parts distribution centers across North America, with a dedicated delivery service that averages 12-hour delivery on 90 percent of parts ordered.

Where private funding options are needed to support commercial EV deployments, Daimler Truck Financial offers a full suite of financing products specifically tailored to both vehicles and charging infrastructure, including lease and retail loan options, customer revolving lines of credit, floorplan financing, and construction and real estate loans. The lease structure allows for a decrease in the initial up-front investment, making electric vehicles more accessible for fleets of all sizes and helps to control costs moving in to electric with predictable payments and the usual lease-related backend risk terms and conditions.

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