Tuesday 14 July 2020

Electric tractors take to the road

MAN and DAF have both put prototype all-electric artic tractor units into service on commercial operations in mainland Europe.

Porsche has an MAN eTGM 32-tonner 4×2 handling delivery traffic between LGI Logistics Group’s hub in Freiberg and the sports car manufacturer’s factory at Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. Using the eTGM in place of a diesel truck saves more than 30,000 kilograms of CO2 per year.

The Freiberg charging station is the first of a model which Porsche Engineering has developed for the future fast-charging network operated by the joint-venture company Ionity.

For this logistics application, the charging power is designed for a maximum of 150 kW/h. This allows a 45-minute charge of the eTGM to give a 100 km range. The charging station is powered by renewable resources.

Meanwhile, DAF Trucks has delivered a fully electric tractor unit to Tinie Manders Transport in Geldrop, the Netherlands. The DAF CF Electric, featuring E-Power Technology from bus-maker VDL, is used on behalf of DHL for shuttle services in the Eindhoven region.

It is the second such truck in service, the first CF Electric being put into operation last December by supermarket chain Jumbo. The Tinie Manders truck joins a 50-strong fleet.

Tinie Manders Transport will combine the fully electric truck with a fully electric refrigerated trailer. This unique combination makes the Geldrop-based transporter eligible for the DKTI subsidy for sustainable transport.

The DAF CF Electric is a 4×2 truck unit developed for gross weights of up to 37 tonnes in urban areas, with single-axle or dual-axle trailers. Based on the diesel DAF CF, it is operated fully electrically using VDL’s E-Power Technology.

The core of the intelligent powertrain is a 210-kW electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery pack with a current total capacity of 144 kW/h.

CF Electric has a range of approximately 100 km, depending on the weight of its cargo, making it suitable for high-volume transport in the urban distribution market. The batteries have a 30-minute quick-charge feature and a full charge takes just one-and-a-half hours.

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