Mercedes-Benz to start series production of the eActros next year24 September 2020

Series production of the battery-electric eActros for heavy-duty distribution haulage is due to start in 2021 at the Wörth, Germany plant – alongside the existing manufacture of trucks with combustion engines.

The eEconic, designed specifically for municipal use, is based on the Mercedes-Benz eActros and is intended to follow it into series production in 2022.

Matthias Jurytko, Hhead of the Mercedes-Benz plant in Wörth said: “At the site, preparations are in full swing to get our production ready for the demands associated with electric drive systems. For example, we are currently training our future specialists in the field of high-voltage systems – a fundamental area of expertise as far as the assembly of automotive batteries and the construction of electric trucks is concerned.”

The electric truck models are set to be assembled alongside trucks with conventional drives in a flexible process. The construction of the different vehicle types should in principle be integrated as far as possible, with the basic vehicle structure being built on one line regardless of whether it will be getting a conventional combustion engine or an electric powertrain. Certain modifications will be made to the production process to accommodate the different types of vehicle.

The installation of various non-conventional drive components will take place in a separate process, as will the assembly of the electric powertrain for the eActros. For around a year, work has been going on to convert building 75 of the plant to prepare it for the new production processes. This includes setting up a new assembly line on which the construction of all the electrical architecture of the eActros, in particular the high-voltage components, will take place, as will its initial operation. Subsequently, the vehicles will be fed back into the regular production process for finishing and final inspection.

The vehicle is expected to offer a range of around 200km on a single charge. Payload is said to be on par with the conventional Actros. The eActros will be available at launch as a two-axle and a three-axle model.

Daimler Trucks will sell the vehicle with consultancy services relating to electric mobility. Among these are route analysis, checking for possible subsidies, support with operational fleet integration and formulating suitable solutions for charging infrastructure.

From 2022, the battery-electric Mercedes-Benz eEconic will also roll off the production line at Wörth. The eActros will provide the technical basis for the eEconic. This vehicle is said to be suited as a refuse collection and disposal vehicle for municipal use.. This usage lends itself very well to battery-electric vehicles due to the relatively short and strictly scheduled routes of around 100 kilometres with a large proportion of stop-start driving, according to the OEM.

William Dalrymple

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