Daimler has begun small series production of its all-electric, light-duty Fuso eCanter truck for the European and US markets.
The electric trucks will be built at the group’s production plant in Tramagal, Portugal, with the first vehicles being handed over to customers this autumn.
Marc Llistosella, president and CEO of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation and head of Daimler Trucks Asia, said: “With the start of the production of the eCanter, we become the first global manufacturer to produce an all-electric truck in series.
“From now on we can address the growing demand for locally emission-free delivery trucks in mega-cities.”
He added: “We already received the first customer orders and will mark the global launch of this truck in one of the most iconic mega-cities, New York, this September.”
Daimler said the 7.5-tonne eCanter provides an answer to the need for a zero-emission and zero-noise truck for urban operation.
It has a range of 100km and a payload up to 4.5 tonnes depending on body type and usage. The vehicle’s electric powertrain contains six high-voltage lithium ion battery packs with 420V and 13.8 kWh each.
The European production line follows in the footsteps of the Kawasaki plant in Japan, which started building trucks earlier this month (7 July).
Seven-Eleven Company will be the first commercial operator in Japan, with 25 units in the fleet by the end of the year.
At last month’s Frevue conference it was claimed that switching to electric freight vehicles in London could deliver significant cost-savings for operators.