Sean Bennett Diesel engines, trucks, electric vehicles, and off-road equipment

July 28, 2022


Filed under: — techrite @ 5:47 pm


Today every truck OEM in North America is either producing or experimenting with all-electric vehicles. In this respect, we lag behind the rest of the world where commercial electric vehicles have a much better established commercial market. 

Commercial vehicles are different. Because they are work machines, they are required to operate throughout a typical working day so the challenge is to have sufficient electrical storage density to achieve this without risk of stranding the vehicle. This means that offshore manufacturers have leveraged an advantage in our market due to their use of electric powertrains for a generation. 

Energy density is all about battery capacity. However, improvements in Li-ion batteries in the very recent past are making possible trucks such as the BYD Bay area refuse packer shown at the beginning of this blog. LMC, LTO, and LFP are currently favored by OEMs. Referencing the BYD garbage packer again, it should be pointed out that there are considerable electrical load requirements on a vocational truck of this type given its considerable hydraulic requirements.

Domestic E-Trucks

While domestic transit E-buses are becoming a common sight in cities, E-trucks are much talked about, but less likely to be seen on our roads. Major challenges have focused on energy density (ie range) and E-component cooling. Nothing beats the experience of monitoring and responding to technical problems in real-world, over-the-road scenarios, and this has provided Chinese and European electric commercial vehicles with an advantage. Here is a list of all-electric and fuel cell Class 6-8 trucks seen on our roads that have progressed beyond a prototype phase:

  • BYD 8T
  • Daimler eCascadia (based on MB eActros)
  • Daimler eM2
  • Daimler Fuso eCanter
  • Navistar-VW eClass 6
  • Nikola One
  • Paccar Kenworth-Toyota FC T680 (fuel cell)
  • Paccar Peterbilt 220 EV
  • Tesla Semi
  • Volvo FE

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