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Portland, Ore. – August 12, 2019 – Daimler Trucks North America LLC (DTNA) announced today that it has built the first two Class 8 battery electric Freightliner eCascadias for customers at its research and development center in Portland. The trucks are part of Freightliner’s Electric Innovation Fleet and built to test the integration of battery electric trucks in to large-scale fleet operations.
“This milestone in electric is important as both today and tomorrow’s technology is progressing. Our purpose is resolute – we build for our customers,” said Roger Nielsen, president and CEO of DTNA. “Our team is incredibly proud to be leading the way for the industry, but prouder still to be working with our customers in a process of co-creation to make real electric trucks for real work in the real world.”
The eCascadia is built on the proven foundation of the Freightliner Cascadia, the best-selling Class 8 heavy-duty truck on the market. The initial customer shipments are the first heavy-duty additions to the 30-vehicle Freightliner Innovation Fleet. Real-world use of the Innovation Fleet and continuing feedback from the members of the Freightliner Electric Vehicle Council will inform the final production versions of both the eCascadia and the medium-duty Freightliner eM2 in a process of co-creation.
Co-creation is the central tenet of DTNA’s approach to electrifying the future of commercial vehicles and a key enabler to the widespread adoption of battery electric trucks. The Electric Vehicle Council brings together 38 Freightliner customers to identify and address all potential hurdles to large-scale deployment of commercial battery electric vehicles. Issues at the forefront of the discussion include charging infrastructure, partnerships with other parties in the e-mobility value chain, vehicle specifications and vehicle use case.
Penske Truck Leasing of Reading, Pennsylvania and NFI of Camden, New Jersey are both members of the Freightliner Electric Vehicle Council and will be the first companies to employ the revolutionary eCascadia in their commercial operations. The eCascadias are destined for the Southern California operations of both companies and will arrive later this month. Additional deliveries of the Freightliner Electric Innovation Fleet will continue throughout 2019.
The Freightliner Innovation Fleet is supported by a partnership between DTNA and the South Coast Air Quality Management District (South Coast AQMD) which focuses on improving air quality in the South Coast Basin and partially funded the Innovation Fleet with a nearly $16M grant. The first of the medium-duty electric Freightliner eM2s began service earlier this year with Penske Truck Leasing and are operated within the South Coast AQMD.
“This is an exciting time for the future of zero-emissions trucks, said Wayne Nastri, South Coast AQMD’s Executive Officer. “As we work towards meeting air quality standards, it is imperative that truck manufacturers accelerate the commercialization of these technologies that will help clean our air and protect public health.”
e-Mobility at Daimler Trucks
The Freightliner eCascadia is a Class 8 tractor designed for local and regional distribution and drayage. Both the eCascadia and the medium-duty eM2 are currently planned to enter series production in late 2021. The Freightliner eCascadia and eM2 are part of Daimler Trucks’ global electrified truck initiative, joining the company’s Thomas Built Buses all-electric Saf-T-Liner C2 Jouley school bus, the FUSO eCanter, and the Mercedes-Benz eActros and eCitaro.
About Daimler Trucks North America
Daimler Trucks North America LLC, headquartered in Portland, Ore., is the leading heavy-duty truck manufacturer in North America. It manufactures, sells, and services commercial vehicles under the Freightliner, Western Star, Detroit, and Thomas Built Buses nameplates. Daimler Trucks North America is a Daimler company.
About Penske Truck Leasing
Celebrating its 50th year in business, Penske Truck Leasing Co., L.P., headquartered in Reading, Pennsylvania, is a partnership of Penske Corporation, Penske Automotive Group and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. A leading global transportation services provider, Penske operates more than 323,000 vehicles and serves customers from more than 1,100 locations in North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Asia. Product lines include full-service truck leasing, contract maintenance, commercial and consumer truck rentals, used truck sales, transportation and warehousing management and supply chain management solutions. Visit GoPenske.com to learn more.
NFI is a fully integrated North American supply chain solutions provider headquartered in Camden, N.J. Privately held by the Brown family since its inception in 1932, NFI generates more than $2 billion in annual revenue and employs more than 11,300 associates. NFI owns facilities globally and operates approximately 50 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space. Its dedicated and drayage fleet consists of over 4,000 tractors and 9,700 trailers. Its business lines include dedicated transportation, distribution, transportation management, port drayage, intermodal, brokerage, global logistics, and commercial real estate. For more information about NFI, visit www.nfiindustries.com or call 1-877-NFI-3777.
About South Coast AQMD
South Coast AQMD is the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties, including the Coachella Valley. For news, air quality alerts, event updates and more, please visit us at www.aqmd.gov, download our award-winning app, or follow us at @SouthCoastAQMD on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.