ZF unveils prototype 5- tonne electric truck 07 May 2019

ZF Japan has unveiled an electric light commercial vehicle, designed for the Japanese market. The prototype has been developed by the engineering team at ZF’s tech centre in Yokohama, collaborating with a team in ZF HQ in Germany.

Called the CeTrax lite, it is based on ZF’s electric drive for passenger vehicles and is an electric drive for light commercial vehicles with a gtw of up to 7.5 tonnes.

The compact driveline unit has a total weight of 120kg.

“The beauty of our new E-drive module is that it can be installed in existing internal combustion engine (ICE) models and therefore converted to a fully electric vehicle without major modifications to the chassis and axles. This is thanks to our ‘plug-and-drive’ concept,” says Robert T Seidler, head of R&D at ZF Japan.

The system is proven, he adds, as the electric drive system for passenger cars is already in series production in the market.

An asynchronous motor equipped with the prototype truck generates 150kW and 380Nm, giving the same level of performance as ICEs in this class while also realising local zero emissions and low noise output.

“The new prototype is made by replacing the conventional ICE driveline of the most commonly used LCVs in Japan with ZF’s CeTrax lite – that is to say, trucks with a 5 tonne gvw and load capacity of 2 tonnes,” says Seidler.

“Starting from this vehicle, ZF will continue to move towards electrification in Japan, as well as globally, while endeavouring to meet the specific requirements of commercial vehicle manufacturers and fleet operators.”

Laura Cork

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