Home » The Mercedes eActros 600 Long-Haul Semi Hits The Road With 311 Miles Of Range And A 621 kWh Battery

The Mercedes eActros 600 Long-Haul Semi Hits The Road With 311 Miles Of Range And A 621 kWh Battery

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As the world looks towards electrifying the way we travel, several manufacturers are working on how to charge up the vehicles we use to haul goods as well. Some companies are honing in on local and regional delivery while others want to figure out how to get goods the long haul. Mercedes-Benz has unveiled the production version of its long-haul truck. The Mercedes-Benz eActros 600 is said to be a long-haul semi with 311 miles of range on tap and the ability to charge fast enough from a megawatt charger to complete over 621 miles in a driving shift.

Electric commercial vehicles are getting exciting. On the smaller end, Bollinger’s Class 4 truck makes delivery trucks fun to drive. Harbinger wants to make a delivery driver’s job easier and RVs innovative with its scalable chassis. In the Class 8 space, Tesla’s range remains unbeaten. That said, we’re nearing a year since the Tesla Semi was unveiled and we still don’t know exactly how heavy it is or other exact specs. Our best guess is more or less 10 Model S batteries. At the very least, those trucks really do seem to be able to go 500 miles with a load. Mercedes-Benz is next to amp up the Class 8 truck, and the brand is giving up most of its truck’s specs.

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Years In The Making

25 Jahre Mercedes Benz Actros 25 Years Of The Mercedes Benz Actros

While the eActros 600 is a new development, Mercedes has been working on electrifying semis for years. In fact, Mercedes itself has been in the trucking business for longer than anyone reading this has been alive.

Mercedes-Benz says its trucking business started in 1896 when Gottlieb Daimler sold the world’s first truck. Even in modern retrospectives the Daimler truck, which was more or less a powered wagon, gets credit for the first truck and it even looks like the distant ancestor of the cabover.

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Der Erste Lkw Der Welt Wird Von Gottlieb Daimler Im Jahr 1896 Gebaut The First Truck In The World Was Built By Gottlieb Daimler In 1896

The truck this new EV is based on is the Actros, a staple of Mercedes trucking since 1996. That truck’s innovations included CAN bus, electronically controlled air brakes, automated gear shifting, and a cab with a level floor. That’s cool enough, but in the Actros’ very next generation, Mercedes added adaptive cruise control, active brake assist, lane keeping assist, better aero, and more. Mind you, this was a semi-truck in 2003!

Mercedes-Benz Trucks says it began its journey of electrified trucks back in 2014 with the Fuso Canter E-Cell. When that truck successfully demonstrated that electric trucks could work, Mercedes-Benz Trucks announced the eActros in 2016. In the years since Mercedes has developed the eActros 300 with its 336 kWh batteries and the eActros 400 with its 448 kWh battery.

Mercedes Benz Eactros 300 Tracto

Those trucks can travel up to around 205 miles and up to around 249 miles, respectively. Production of the eActros kicked off in 2021, and even back then, Mercedes-Benz said it had a long-haul version in the works, targeting 2024 for a release date.

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Now we’re here, and Mercedes-Benz appears to be on time to deliver its promise.

The Mercedes-Benz eActros 600

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

The headlining feature of the new eActros 600 is its range. Mercedes-Benz Trucks says the big rig can travel 500 kilometers without recharging. And to be clear, that’s 500 kilometers (311 miles) fully-loaded. To test this out, Mercedes took a prototype eActros on a long-haul trip of over 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) through mountains where the truck needed to charge just once. From Mercedes-Benz Trucks:

[D]evelopment engineers from Mercedes-Benz Trucks have successfully completed a test run across the Alps with the battery electric eActros 600 for long-distance haulage. The engineers drove the prototype, which had been loaded up to 40 tons, from Stuttgart – via the steep rise to the Swabian Jura mountain range at Aichelberg, Kufstein and the Brenner Highway – to Bolzano in South Tyrol. Despite the demanding topography, the e-truck managed the 530 kilometer trip completely without intermediate charging and arrived in Bolzano after a roughly seven hour journey. After a single charge, the engineers started off on the home run – once again with no intermediate charging. This means the fully loaded eActros 600 traveled more than 1,000 kilometers with only one stop for charging. This test result was made possible by the combination of an efficient drive, high battery capacity and high-performance recuperation.

Prototyp Des Eactros 600 Fährt Mit 40 Tonnen Ohne Zwischenladen 530 Kilometer Von Stuttgart Nach Südtirol – Insgesamt über 1.000 Kilometer Mit Einer Zwischenladung Prototype Of The Eactros 600 With A Weight Of 40 Tons Travels 530 Kilometers From Stut

The secret sauce of Mercedes’ new truck is in its batteries. Bolted to the chassis are three lithium iron phosphate batteries, each rated at 207 kWh, adding up to 621 kWh. That’s how the new truck gets the ‘600’ in its name. Mercedes says these LFP batteries are characterized by their long service lives. The truck manufacturer says its engineers designed an electric truck that should last as long as a diesel counterpart.

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To Mercedes-Benz Trucks, that means a life of up to 1.2 million kilometers (745,645 miles) in ten years. When the truck reaches that milestone, Mercedes says its batteries should still have over 80 percent capacity remaining. Mercedes-Benz Trucks further points out that LFP doesn’t require nickel or cobalt while allowing for 95 percent of the installed capacity to be used, squeezing out more range for commercial operators.

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

When it comes to charging, Mercedes-Benz says the eActros 600 can charge from 20 percent to 80 percent in 30 minutes when the tractor is connected to a megawatt charger. You’re looking at Combined Charging System rates of up to 400kW, which is far better than the competition, save for the Tesla Semi, which currently feeds from 750kW chargers.

Those batteries power an eAxle developed by the truck manufacturer. Mercedes says the axle has an 800-volt architecture, two motors, and a four-speed transmission. Peak output is about 804 HP and continuous output is rated at 536 HP. Mercedes-Benz Trucks does not say for how long you can punch out 804 HP, but does say full output is available “most of the time.”

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

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While Mercedes-Benz doesn’t state the tractor’s weight, it does say that the truck’s gross combination weight rating is 44 metric tonnes (97,000 pounds) and payload is 22 metric tonnes (48,500 pounds) with a standard trailer. Of course, Europe’s trucking is a bit different than we get here. In most states, electric trucks max out at an 82,000-pound GCW. When Mercedes hauled that load through a mountain range? It was loaded to a GCW of 88,184 pounds.

In addition to the EV tech, there’s a host of driver aids including Active Brake Assist 6, Frontguard Assist, Active Sideguard Assist 2, and Active Drive Assist 3. The truck’s safety systems feed from six sensors with a 270-degree view around the rig. Mercedes says the eActros 600 can stop itself if it detects a potential collision with a pedestrian or cyclist, so long as the truck isn’t going faster than 37 mph at the time. The truck’s safety systems are capable of monitoring the truck and its entire length of load as well as warning the driver of dangerous events in hectic situations, such as heavy traffic. Of course, since EVs are silent, the truck also emits sound so people outside know it’s there.

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

The truck also comes with a choice of two power take-offs to power equipment or refrigerated trailers. One of these PTOs is an electric-mechanical power take-off that can operate hydraulic or mechanical equipment including as tippers, sliding floor, or silo trailers. The other choice converts DC to AC power for reefers or similar. Mercedes says these PTOs can output as much as 90 kW of power.

The eActros 600 gets all of this wrapped in a cabover-style rig that Mercedes aerodynamically optimized. It’s still a brick pushing through wind, but the tractor is rounded off with flaps, deflectors, and spoilers trying their best to slip the cab through the air. Mercedes has decided to stick to a more traditional cab with this truck, and its interior isn’t anything wild, unlike what you’ll see inside of Tesla’s Semi.

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Coming Soon

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

All of this is a part of Daimler’s plan to phase out its internal combustion trucks. Currently, the manufacturer assembles 472 diesel trucks a day and by the end of the decade, it wants most of those trucks to be electric. Over here in America, Daimler’s targets are less drastic, but still ambitious as it expects 30 percent of Freightliner’s medium- and heavy-duty trucks to be electric by the end of the 2020s. Daimler wants all of its trucks sold in the United States, Europe, and Japan to be carbon-neutral by 2039.

Mercedes says these trucks will go into series production by the end of next year. Right now, about 50 units are going into fleet trials in Europe. Here in America, the eActros foreshadows future developments by Daimler Truck North America. Right now, the firm’s best offering here is the Freightliner eCascadia, which goes up to 230 miles with its 438 kWh battery.

Mercedes Benz Trucks Feiert Weltpremiere Des Batterieelektrischen Fernverkehrs Lkw Eactros 600 Mercedes Benz Trucks Celebrates World Premiere Of The Battery Electric Long Haul Truck Eactros 600

On paper, Mercedes’ new truck comes out on top of most of the competition. The Volvo VNR Electric can go 275 miles with its 565 kWh battery. Peterbilt has the 579 EV, which can go about 150 miles from its 400 kWh battery. Really, the Merc is bettered only by the Nikola Tre BEV with up to 330 miles from its 733 kWh battery, as well as the Tesla Semi’s 500 miles of range. It will be interesting to see how Freightliner tweaks this platform for an American truck.

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[Editor’s Note: I’d just like to point out this awesome video of Jay Leno driving the upcoming Tesla Semi, and chatting with Tesla about the tech:

Jay was the keynote speaker at a Gala that I missed last weekend, as I was a best man at my friend’s wedding. Worth it, of course, but I’d someday love to meet The Legend. -DT]/

(Images: Mercedes-Benz Trucks)

 

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Bizness Comma Nunya
Bizness Comma Nunya
7 months ago

This is a great step forward for Mercedes. I think that the real answer will be J3105 overhead charging rails for trucks like these, that are mounted to canopies at truck stops (like exists already) and trucks can “pull through”.

J3105 overhead charging already exists and is in use for the public transit sector, and can charge at up to 750kW peak (last time I checked). Driver can stay where they are, arm comes down automatically, no cables in the way…. this is what the solution will look like for Class 6-8 trucks that need to go long distances.

KD
KD
8 months ago

.

Last edited 8 months ago by KD
Jakob Johansen
Jakob Johansen
8 months ago

The real answer is:
Rail, shipping containers, automated container transfer between rail and last miles trucks.

Wolfpack57
Wolfpack57
8 months ago

Lightbars are boring. I want light columns on these things

Wolfpack57
Wolfpack57
8 months ago

Honestly i like the looks. It’s smoother and less angry than most new vehicles these days, although i do think light bars are overdone.

Slow Joe Crow
Slow Joe Crow
8 months ago

Payload is going to be a problem. Low density loads like empty beer cans, Styrofoam, or parcels can tolerate an extra 5 tons of vehicle weight. Steel hauling or tanker work max out weight before volume. In concrete terms, 2×100 gallon aluminum diesel tanks is about 1800 lbs, the eActros battery pack is 12,000 lbs.

Defenestrator
Defenestrator
8 months ago
Reply to  Slow Joe Crow

The drivetrain’s probably a good 4,000lbs lighter as well. Big semi engines and transmissions are heavy. Still means ~6,000lbs less capacity, though.

Silent But Deadly
Silent But Deadly
8 months ago

Meanwhile, these guys exist https://www.januselectric.com.au/ Example vehicles include converted Freightliners with a range of 400 to 600 km out of swappable lithium battery packs and the swap can be done in 4 minutes which is quicker than a standard diesel refueling.

Last edited 8 months ago by Silent But Deadly
Younork
Younork
8 months ago

The name’s Hugh, Hugh Janus

Lokki
Lokki
8 months ago

This truck is going to be great for the Germans if they have electricity to run more than a few of them.

Germany’s cabinet on Wednesday approved putting on-reserve lignite-fired power plants back online from October until the end of March 2024, the economy ministry said, as a step to replace scarce natural gas this winter and avoid shortages.

https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/germany-approves-bringing-coal-fired-power-plants-back-online-this-winter-2023-10-04/

By the way, that’s lignite they’re using:

“Burning lignite generates more CO2 emissions than hard coal, and between three and seven times more than gas.
It’s also amongst the dirtiest forms of fuel you can burn
Just like with regular black coal, lignite-firing results in dust, NOx and SO2 emissions. These can combine to create a cocktail of air pollution — which is dangerous to health.

I wonder what the over/under on the pollution from generating the electricity with lignite to run the truck is compared to diesel…

Now if we were talking Nuclear power, it would be no contest, but nuclear power is just crazy talk, from what I am told.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago

I saw the headline and was thinking yeah another EV promise with a dozen caveats. But if true this thing is truly a workable EV SEMI. My only concern is in the USA most trucking companies use driving teams. One sleeping the other driving. It still might work. Most importantly after 10 years when replacing happens the battery at 80% could be used to transport shorter or daily loads. The only EV System I have seen with a used market.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
8 months ago

Waiting for Toecutter to tell MB how with a few simple alternative choices gotten 10k miles of range on half that battery.

Diana Slyter
Diana Slyter
8 months ago

Too heavy to be competitive- Looks like 22 tons weight with the trailer, so even if that’s a heavy trailer it weights at least 15 tons. The porkiest American 3 axle rigs are usually less than 10 tons.

Mostly Harmless
Mostly Harmless
8 months ago
Reply to  Diana Slyter

For comparison, a diesel rig at 44 tonnes has a payload of 28 tonnes. So we’d need about 20% more trucks on the road to carry the same amount!

Diana Slyter
Diana Slyter
8 months ago

That cab looks a lot more Freightliner than Mercedes= Tack on a hood and it may be the successor to the Cascadia.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
8 months ago

([Editor’s Note: I’d just like to point out this awesome video of Jay Leno driving the upcoming Tesla Semi, and chatting with Tesla about the tech:)

I was just thinking of that while reading. And it seems to me that the legacy car makers aren’t laughing at Tesla anymore. And they’re being very proactive in areas where they know Tesla is coming and don’t want to get caught with their pants down again like they did with consumer-grade electric sedans and CUVs.

Spikedlemon
Spikedlemon
8 months ago

I look forward to a future where America will have a return of cabover trucks.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago

Another truck with not-so-great aero, where the companies will still insist no one will buy an “ugly” utility freight hauler. There’s potential to cut the drag of big rigs in half, today, that is not being exploited. That potential has existed for 50 years now.

COLANI: 1973 was the first gasoline crisis in the world. That year, I designed the first aerodynamic truck, eating 40 percent less fuel. I put it on exhibit everywhere. It was 30 years ahead of its time. Nobody is building it today, and everybody still has problems with their boxy cars and trucks eating up fuel. Finally, I’ve been in contact with American companies like Kenworth to design streamlined trucks for them, and a man is driving one of my trucks around America to get people interested in them because gasoline is such a big problem. This stuff won’t be around forever. We need super-streamlined machinery. They don’t get the message, even today!

COLMAN: Do you think that the world is more receptive to your work than it used to be?

COLANI: No, no, no. You see, if you are 30 years ahead of your time, you will always have difficulty speaking with the bosses in the industry. They are too conservative.

HowintheNameofZeus
HowintheNameofZeus
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter
Last edited 8 months ago by HowintheNameofZeus
Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago

I like the looks. Get a few on TV. DO these meet all required safety specs to be road worthy? Those cabs look very unsafe. The tight fit between cab and trailer makes me wonder incline ability. BUT IN A WORLD WHERE THE CYBERTRUCK IS A POSSIBILITY NO OTHER TRUCK IS TOO UGLY OR WEIRD.

BolognaBurrito
BolognaBurrito
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Look at this guy, with his CFD-capable eyeballs.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  BolognaBurrito

Colani does have CFD eyeballs.

One doesn’t need CFD eyeballs when the claimed efficiency figures tell the story. They could realistically increase that range by 1/3 on the same pack if they addressed drag to the extent Colani did on his prototypes.

Wolfpack57
Wolfpack57
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Yeah, but they’d be increasing upfront cost, repair cost, ability to work with standard trailers, interior space, usable volume, visibility

BolognaBurrito
BolognaBurrito
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

The numbers are pulled out of his ass from over 30 years ago. I doubt this thing has the same aerodynamic efficiency as a Kenworth W900.

Plus, the Colani truck requires a bespoke trailer, with smaller carrying volume, and numerous other downsides for a vehicle built to transport goods/things.

His trucks are clearly artistic design exercises and not realistic attempts at improving existing truck design. “All I changed is the shape!” he says; yeah, you changed it into a near worthless thing.

He’s acting like fuel efficiency is the most important aspect of semitrucks, when that couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s profit.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

I don’t know you get UPS, USPS, or Amazon ears and show them these numbers realistically they will shove their drivers in an Oscar Mayer weiner or frank mobile.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

The problem is the major manufacturers won’t build it, and the barrier of entry is too high for creative people willing to build such things to enter the market. The OEMs claim the demand for a money-saving product isn’t there. Not just in passenger vehicles, but commercial vehicles. Mr. Colani noted this same problem 50 years ago. In reality, demand is there, as you note…

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

So if I understand you a manufacturer doesn’t want to build a competitive vehicle? Makes sense but this guy got some built somehow? If you have an order nowadays I think you can get it built based on companies building anything. But maybe approach companies on the edge who can’t get a test model built? Just suggesting don’t have that reach.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

There’s a paradigm that has been ruling the auto industry for the last century: planned obsolescence.

Highly slippery aerodynamics have been known about for a century now. The average new 2023 car has a drag coefficient that has JUST NOW caught up with the 1921 Rumpler Tropfenwagen. Everyone without exception emphasizes style over substance. Someone that would do the opposite would be highly disruptive and would possibly walk away with a lot of marketshare. The existing manufacturers’ excuse is “why produce the world’s most aerodynamic car that no one will buy”?

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Okay but anyone who does not have a big slice of the pie will jump in to get a bigger slice. Any of these questionable new companies could hook up with a legitimate design company and do the equivalent of Tesla in the trucking company. Everyone said Tesla couldn’t do it but has. So everything is easier the second time around.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

Tesla was a disruptor in many ways. Without them, I’m doubtful EVs would be on the market at all by anyone. Tesla got the genie out of the bottle and everyone has been scrambling to catch up. The technology to produce an affordable 200-mile-range EV with rapid acceleration existed in the 1990s. Tesla’s Model S and Model 3 were also groundbreaking with their aerodynamics, offering at one point the most aerodynamically-efficient cars on the market. They also designed their batteries to generally last, with examples exceeding 500,000 miles life on their original pack.

But even Tesla was quite conservative compared to what they could have done.

If someone with the resources wanted to be a disruptor in the trucking industry, the opportunity is definitely there. It was there over 50 years ago, as noted by Mr. Colani.

Last edited 8 months ago by Toecutter
Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

So please edumacate me:
1. Is Elon lacking in resources?
2. Is Elon unlikely to want to upset the apple cart?
Frankly from what we know about Musk he loves technology and attention. And took him decades to build the range in his cars to what you claim is easy to achieve?
I’m sorry I think a hard no here.

Toecutter
Toecutter
7 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

More like Elon is still conservative enough that he wants to put out a design he knows for a fact will be a hit. That is why the Model S and Model 3 don’t look so dramatically different from everything else. They take some very basic steps that can provide a significant reduction in drag, steps that everyone else has known about for decades but have generally not done, and pursue them to their logical end. This is why the Model S PLAID has a 0.208 Cd value, but still looks fairly normal.

If Tesla REALLY wanted to disrupt shit, they could have made a car almost as slippery as the Aptera(0.13 Cd). But it also would have been a gamble. A gamble that really needs to be taken, IMO repeatedly, until it catches on. Once it does, there won’t be no going back, and we’d all benefit from it.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

TBF that Colani semi is one blobfish level fuuuuugly truck! Yeech!!

Could the world get used to such a fugly truck? Will people buy fugly?

Absolutely. After all the Pontiac Aztek was (and still is) derided as fuuuuglyyet here we are today with the equally fugly Tesla X and BMW X6 selling just fine.

The weird thing is that Colani truck with its enormous circular windshield and rotating wipers already looks like a massive three pointed MB star. Put a backlight on it and status hungry idiots will demand MB shut up and take their money.

Scone Muncher
Scone Muncher
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Those designs scream CYLON to me… not sure that’s what we want, especially if it’s connected to the internet.

Iain Tunmore
Iain Tunmore
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

In Europe & the UK we have limitations on length of overall truck and trailer because of our ancient roads, which have become standardised, maximising trailer length so the trucks have to be cab over in design.

Nic Periton
Nic Periton
8 months ago

“Of course, since EVs are silent, the truck also emits sound so people outside know it’s there.”

If this “sound” is not Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” I am going to be a picture of disappointment,

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Nic Periton

I see more Star Wars Star Trek or Space 1999.

IRegertNothing, Esq.
IRegertNothing, Esq.
8 months ago

“In fact, Mercedes itself has been in the trucking business for longer than anyone reading this has been alive.”

Oh yeah? How would you know that I didn’t go over the top and fight the Hun in my youth?

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
8 months ago

Or you might be a long-lived vampire like Lestat dl Lioncourt.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lestat_de_Lioncourt

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago

Actually I was Napoleon in a previous life so there you go.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
8 months ago

Current laws allow an ICE big rig to be 80K lbs max, and an EV big rig to be 82K lbs max.

Is 2000 lbs sufficient to make up any expected weight differences? Perhaps I’m mistaken, but I assume that just like “normal” EVs, these trucks weigh in significantly more than their ICE compatriots.

What I’m getting at is, do EVs have a reduced payload capacity per truck compared to ICE? If so, by how much? And in the end, does that mean we will need more EV trucks on the road to move the same amount of product as we are moving now with ICE?

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Lockleaf

I tandem trailers with auxiliary batteries to reduce tractor weight and increase range.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

Reduced tractor weight doesn’t matter if you have max weight cap of the whole rig at 82K lbs. The tractor could theoretically weight nothing and if the tandem trailers weigh 41K each, you are still at max weight. This would increase range and charge times, for better or worse.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Lockleaf

So how are double and triple trailers allowed on the road?

And for humor purposes is this anything like how much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

Defenestrator
Defenestrator
8 months ago
Reply to  Lockleaf

Not sure how accurate it is, but someone else mentioned the battery weighing 12,000lbs. Subtract 1800lbs of fuel, and probably 4,000lbs lighter drivetrain, and you end up with 4,000lbs less payload. A bit under 10% less than a normal semi, probably? So not a good option for carrying liquids or steel, but might be the same for less dense stuff that runs out of space before it runs out of weight.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
8 months ago
Reply to  Defenestrator

You make a good point. I wonder what percentage of trucks on the road are running effectively at max weight capacity. For all I know, its a crazy low percentage.

Phantom Pedal Syndrome
Phantom Pedal Syndrome
8 months ago

I’m gonna surprise myself and say:
This is a good use case for internal camera screens in lieu of external side view mirrors. No more mirrors sticking two and a half feet off each side of the truck? I’ll take it.

V10omous
V10omous
8 months ago

Use this battery to make a 1000 mile+ S Class you cowards!

If it needs to be an extended wheelbase to fit, so be it.

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
8 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

LOL the batteries in this truck are about 12,000 pounds, you would need a CDL to drive an S class just based on weight. Plus the size of the pack would make the S Class look like a bro-dozer it would be so jacked.

V10omous
V10omous
8 months ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

Sounds pretty awesome to me, tbh.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

They could get that on less than 1/5th the battery if they streamlined the crap out of the car, even if it ended up weighing 4,500 lbs.

Loudog
Loudog
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

This appears to be Aptera’s model. Any production yet?

Pat Rich
Pat Rich
8 months ago

To Mercedes-Benz Trucks, that means a life of up to 1.2 million kilometers (745,645 miles) in ten years. When the truck reaches that milestone, Mercedes says its batteries should still have over 80 percent capacity remaining”

If they are expecting 600km per charge and 1,200,000 km to 80% capacity then they are actually being a little conservative for LiPo4. Most LiPo4 say 3500 cycles to 80%, Mercedes is quoting only 2000 cycles with this figure. Under promise, overdeliver I guess.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Pat Rich

We’ll see if their low-voltage electrical systems last as long as the truck, and end up repairable after warrantee. I’m doubtful.

If so, then there is no excuse why their cars can’t be designed to the same standard of reliability and longevity. An EV designed to take advantage of its strengths will basically be a “forever car”, but modern EVs are anything but, and I think that is deliberate on part of the manufacturers.

Alexander Moore
Alexander Moore
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Isn’t this already the case for ICE semi trucks vs regular cars though? Those easily and regularly crest a million miles which is insane by passenger car standards. There’s no reason to engineer a car to match that because then it would be ridiculously expensive and no one would buy one (see the 200 series Land Cruiser).

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago

Actually, older models from Mercedes(W123 diesels), Ford(Panther platform), Honda and Toyota come kind of close, when maintained properly, and were generally affordable. The manufacturers stopped building them like that, on purpose.

Getting that sort of reliability and longevity out of an EV instead of an ICE, would comparatively be childs’ play.

Last edited 8 months ago by Toecutter
Alexk98
Alexk98
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

I’ve currently got a W123 project (’82 300CD), and the emphasis is really on the proper maintenance. They absolutely will run forever, its not uncommon to see 500k+ miles on original drivetrains, but the vacuum system is AWFUL in that everything is finicky, hard to source replacements for, and interconnected.

And if you think I’m being dramatic, lets put it this way, one vacuum leak somewhere and the engine doesn’t shut off, the trans doesn’t shift right, the doors don’t lock, and the A/C is wonky. I’m going through a lot with the system on mine, but it has zero hesitations starting up first try every time. They can be money pits, but man are they worth it.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Alexk98

I know about the vacuum woes. Former 300 SDL owner here. That car spent over one-hundred hours under my ownership at triple digit mph speeds, AFTER the previous owners already racked up over 200,000 miles on it. Mechanically, it was bulletproof. There is not a long list of cars that you can do that with.

Alexk98
Alexk98
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

That absolutely checks out. My 300CD has 175k or so on the odo but is TMU, who knows when it died, has clearly sat for years and outside of a completely blown out brake master cylinder and front shocks, and some questionable radio wiring, is a peach. Unfortunately haven’t driven it more than 3 miles due to the vacuum stuff, but I’ve got more faith in it than most cars two decades newer.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Yeah but that is few and far between where even maintenance was more than car value. Also accidents happen and insurance coverage won’t pay more than 80% of value for repairs.

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Emissions and safety rules also play a part in that – older platforms that have R&D costs long since amortized and tooling long since paid off have to be discontinued at some point due to not being able to meet ever-changing crash test and design conformity rules (Ford’s Panther cars), and older, more robust engines have to be sunset due to issues meeting whatever new emissions rules might come down the pike (like when GM had to discontinue the 3800 V6 in favor of the oil burning/chain shredding 3.6), and then look at what’s happened to light truck diesels over the past few decades.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

I agree I think auto manufacturers want to eliminate the used car market. They make nothing on a resale of their cars. Now dealers would be against it. But who wants a $60,000 car with no in value? Not even rich people manufacturers only. But think how lucrative it would be for them. Lowest spec rental cars for all the poors. And just leasing them.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

This is how the entire U.S. auto market is becoming primed for the taking by China. Just watch.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Maybe but financially China is about to experience a depression equal to the US in the 30s. So much like Russia a backward ignorant socialist country is doomed in the money race.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

You think China is actually socialist. How adorable!

Pit-Smoked Clutch
Pit-Smoked Clutch
8 months ago
Reply to  Pat Rich

I think they might be being optimistic, but I’m not confident enough to start pointing fingers. Fast charging really accelerates the wear and something like this probably will be fast charged a lot.

Toecutter
Toecutter
8 months ago

Depends on if the battery can handle the fast charging C-rate on a continuous basis. A sufficiently power-dense battery will experience no degradation. Tesla has gotten their designs right, at least:

https://www.recurrentauto.com/research/impacts-of-fast-charging

We compared cars that fast charge at least 90% of the time to cars that fast charge less than 10% of the time. In other words, people who almost exclusively fast charge their car and people who very rarely fast charge. The results show no statistically significant difference in range degradation between Teslas that fast charge more than 90% of the time and those that fast charge less than 10% of the time.

Pit-Smoked Clutch
Pit-Smoked Clutch
8 months ago
Reply to  Toecutter

This is interesting – it flies in the face of everything I’m seeing from cell manufacturers… but I’m also not necessarily always seeing this info first hand and in the right context (my work is a few steps removed from the electrochemical engineers).

I really wish there was a link on that page to get to the actual study, including the methodology, but I’ve missed it if it’s there. I’m inclined to take the charts with a grain of salt because of that, even if they do look at first glance like they are generated from actual data, rather than wishful thinking.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
8 months ago
Reply to  Pat Rich

It also helps keep the warranty claims down.

Ben
Ben
8 months ago

My big question is how many chargers exist that can accommodate something like a semi. And if the answer, as I suspect, is basically none, how much trucking traffic can be replaced by a 300 mile range truck? I’m not being passive-aggressive here either, I don’t know the answers and they’re important context for whether electric semis matter at all over the next few years.

Pat Rich
Pat Rich
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

Megawatt chargers are still in development, but so long as you can power them, they shouldn’t be hard to add at big highway stops. They are rated as high as 1250 volts at 3000 amps, which…damn, thats a little scary…basically little transformer stations.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Pat Rich

Actually my brother was a mother trucker. He teamed up but the team transported the same stuff all the time. Paint to NYC, Liquor to California and produce to PA. Always had loads ready to go. If the company shipping had chargers no problem. It is the lone trucker trying to make a living off the one off delivery say a car, or Christmas trees etc who wouldn’t be able to make it work. But the wholesale transportation companies could are it work and maybe more safer as rest when charging?

Pedro
Pedro
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

A fleet of Teslas is operating successfully – don’t know how they deal with on road charging. Depot charging is not a big deal. I think trucks follow set routes, so infrastructure could be more easily built out. I know companies like Loves are very much into EV charging, and already own the real estate.

Defenestrator
Defenestrator
8 months ago
Reply to  Pedro

I think so far they’re on static local/regional routes. Which makes sense given the range, too. I could see electrics being super practical for that sort of route, even if OTR’s a ways away yet.

Pedro
Pedro
7 months ago
Reply to  Defenestrator

I think most trucks follow set routes. They’re sure not going to the mountains to enjoy the twisties LOL. Yard trucks are another thing: They never leave the shipping yard, but run all day everyday. These could be decarbonized easily. Some companies are on it.

Also buses: South America and China lead on this form of electrification, but it is creeping into Europe, and gosh even seeping into the US.

In general, fixed route seem the easiest to electrify, and because of constant use, would take a lot of CO2 out of the air. And of course, they’re quiet, comfy, and very powerful.

Clark B
Clark B
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

The tricky part about EV trucks in the US is that they have a lot more miles to cover, thus necessitating more chargers needed on the road, or larger batteries, or both. I mean, I travel nearly 140 miles just to visit my grandparents, sometimes both ways in a single day, and that’s what I would call “not very far” in the context of traversing American highways. Or maybe I’m wrong, my grandfather was a trucker but retired 15 years ago, so what I know about trucking may not be relevant.

Alexander Moore
Alexander Moore
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

I’m assuming they’re focusing on last-mile distribution kind of things like connecting distribution centers with supermarkets, etc. etc. as Tesla is doing with Pepsi right now. The infrastructure is obviously not there for long-haul EV trucking yet in any country.

Aaron
Aaron
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

There are a lot of situations where trucks like this would be well suited. Anything that travels between fixed locations or has “relatively” low mileage routes would be good candidates. Think service between hubs, last mile delivery, and stuff like that. About the only real application that wouldn’t be well served would be OTR/long haul but I wouldn’t be surprised if logistics companies use more localized hub/spoke and/or intermodal systems to work around that limitation.

Ben
Ben
8 months ago
Reply to  Aaron

That’s what I’m wondering though. What percentage of trucking these days would be well served by something that’s tethered to a central charging location. Is it 10%? 70%? It’s important information to know how significant this is.

Aaron
Aaron
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

I tried to come up with that answer and it really depends on how you measure things and who you’re listening to. The most consistent info I could find suggested that about half of the driven routes in this country break the 250 mile “long haul” barrier. So assuming you could get the appropriate charging infrastructure put into garages, distro centers, and hubs, you could probably replace half or more of the Class 8 trucks on the road with BEV models without changing logistical chains much.

Last edited 8 months ago by Aaron
Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
8 months ago
Reply to  Ben

And that is the crux of the issue.

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