Testing of Mercedes-Benz electric refuse truck in full swing

Daimler/Mercedes-Benz Trucks is pushing ahead with the development of its eEconic electric refuse truck for municipal refuse collection through a series of multiple intensive trials focusing on the vehicle’s safety, performance and durability.
Testing of Mercedes-Benz electric refuse truck in full swing
Courtesy of Daimler.

The eEconic will also have to prove itself in tests of the batteries and the electric powertrain in summer and in winter and is being subjected to additional tests focusing on issues such as noise, electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and test drives on the rough road. Once these tests have concluded, the vehicle will move into the next series of tests involving customer trials in real life operation. Production of the eEconic is scheduled for the second half of 2022 at the Wörth plant in Germany.

The eEconic’s vehicle architecture benefits from Daimler Trucks’ global platform strategy, with a low floor based on the eActros for heavy-duty distribution operations. As a result, the central technical specifications of the eEconic are largely identical to those of the eActros. The eEconic, in its configuration as a refuse collection vehicle, will in future be able to cover the vast majority of the Econic’s typical refuse collection routes without needing to recharge en route, and will be locally CO2-neutral and quiet.

“We are subjecting the eEconic to an extremely wide range of test series, and the results to date have shown that we are on the right track with our concept” said Dr Ralf Forcher, Head of Mercedes Benz Special Trucks. “The eEconic is ideally suited for its designated role as a refuse collection vehicle. The high proportion of stop-and-go driving, reliably plannable daily routes averaging 100 km and the charging of the batteries at the customers’ depots add up to an ideal application for the mission profile of the battery-electric low-floor truck.”

The eEconic has a gross vehicle weight rating of 27 tons. As is the case with the eActros, the technological heart of the eEconic is the drive unit — an electric axle with two integrated electric motors and a two-speed transmission. The battery of the eEconic series-production model will be equipped with three battery packs, each with an energy capacity of around 105 kWh. Both liquid-cooled motors generate a continuous output of 330 kW as well as a top performance of 400 kW. In addition, when driving with foresight, electrical energy can be recovered through recuperation — a major advantage, especially in the stop-and-go operation of refuse collection. At the end of the daily routes, the batteries of the electric truck can be recharged with up to 160 kW at the customers’ depot.

The eEconic has inherited proven features of the conventional Econic that are popular among customers. These include a deep panoramic windscreen set in a ‘DirectVision’ cab that has a low seat position, thus providing the driver with direct visual contact with other road users and enabling an extremely good overview of the road traffic. The cab is also spacious with low entry and exit and able to accommodate four people. The eEconic also has a locally CO2-neutral drive system and lower noise emissions.

Daimler Truck AG is aiming to offer new vehicles that are CO2-neutral by 2039 in Europe, Japan and North America. The company plans to have a vehicle portfolio comprising series-produced vehicles with battery-powered drive systems in the main sales regions Europe, the United States and Japan by 2022. It also wants to supplement its vehicle portfolio by adding series-produced hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles. The ultimate goal is to achieve CO2-neutral transport on the road by 2050.

For additional information:

Daimler Mercedes-Benz

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