Electrification of trucks

Cambridge, UK: Electrification of trucks is happening now. David Wyatt, technology analyst at TechEx has provided market forecasts in a new report, Electric Truck 2020-2030.

Along with the rest of the automotive sector, the medium and heavy-duty truck market is evolving.

Governments around the world, recognising the potentially catastrophic repercussions of unfettered climate change and witnessing the detrimental impact on human health from vehicle exhaust pollutant emissions in urban environments, are taking decisive action, that will, in the coming decades, drive vehicle manufacturers to zero on-road exhaust emission powertrain solutions. Consequently, the days of the fossil fuel-powered combustion engine are numbered.
 
In the face of tightening CO2 emission legislation for new trucks, that will be difficult to meet in the relatively near future with a fossil fuel combustion engine, and increasing pressure to limit peoples’ exposure to hazardous air pollutants in city centres, that are in large part the result of on-road transportation, a much cleaner source of power is required for future medium and heavy-duty trucks.

This need is compounded by increasing demand for freight delivery as the retail industry grows its online sales platforms and people gradually abandon private car ownership for mobility as a service (Maas) platforms.
 
It is already clear that it is impossible for ICE-powered fuel efficiency improvements to deliver the required emission reductions in the long-term. The future is either battery-electric or fuel cell electric vehicles. They deliver a zero on-road emission solution, that immediately protects people from PM and NOx emissions in urban areas and passes the burden of decarbonisation from vehicle manufacturers on to the generators of electricity.
 
Diesel and petrol combustion engines are already a technology of the past, prudent companies in the automotive industry are already transitioning themselves toward the electric and fuel cell supply chain. All major truck OEMS are now investing in zero-emission trucks projects for fear of being left behind.
 
The IDTechEx “Electric Truck 2020-2030” report is intended to help businesses across the automotive value chain plan for the future in this rapidly changing market. The report provides 48 forecast lines for battery electric and fuel cell electric trucks, that include a ten-year outlook for vehicle production, market penetration and market value, with separate forecasts for both the medium and heavy-duty truck markets and regional segmentation for China, North America, Europe and ROW. An up-to-date overview of the battery and fuel cell electric truck market is provided in the report, with detail about current demonstration projects and efforts by major players in the industry to commercialise zero-emission trucks, across each of the key regions.

The report presents background to technology development in the electric truck market, including fuel cells and electric hybridization, along with a discussion of key enabling technologies for electric truck deployment such as batteries, motors and charging infrastructure.

At the IAA 2016, Mercedes-Benz Trucks was the first manufacturer in the world to show a heavy-duty electric truck. The technology leader has now moved on a step with its comprehensively refined eActros, which celebrated its world premiere in 2018: its deployment with customers began a short while ago. The first eActros of the so-called innovation fleet has been in practical trial for one customer since September already. The subsequent vehicle handovers from the first phase of the project will follow until the end of the year

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