Daimler Trucks is to begin customer trials in 2023 of a hydrogen fuel-cell truck with a range of up to 600 miles as part of its electrification strategy.
The manufacturer aims to begin series production of the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck vehicle in the second half of this decade.
As part of yesterday’s announcement of its technology strategy, it also unveiled plans for two fully-electric vehicles, enabling it to offer trucks for purposes ranging from urban distribution to international long-haul transport.
Martin Daum, chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG and Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, said: “We are consistently pursuing our vision of CO2-neutral transport with a focus on the genuinely locally CO2-neutral technologies battery power and hydrogen-based fuel cells, which have the potential to succeed in the market in the long term.
“This combination enables us to offer our customers the best vehicle options, depending on the application.
“Battery power will be rather used for lower cargo weights and for shorter distances.
“Fuel-cell power will tend to be the preferred option for heavier loads and longer distances.”
The production version of the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck, which made its world premiere as a concept vehicle, will have a gross vehicle weight of 40 tons and a payload of 25 tones.
Two special liquid-hydrogen tanks and a particularly powerful fuel-cell system will make this high payload and long range possible, and therefore form the core of the GenH2 Truck concept.
In April this year, Daimler Truck AG concluded a preliminary, non-binding agreement with the Volvo Group to establish a new joint venture for the development to series maturity, production and commercialisation of fuel-cell systems for use in heavy-duty commercial vehicles and other applications
The manufacturer says liquid – instead of gaseous - hydrogen will be used as with its higher energy density, the vehicle’s performance is planned to equal that of a comparable conventional diesel truck.
Mercedes-Benz eActros LongHaul
Daimler Trucks also unveiled a preview of a purely battery-powered long-haul truck, the Mercedes-Benz eActros LongHaul.
The manufacturer aims to have this ready for series production in 2024, with a range of around 300 miles.
It says the comparatively short range of the eActros LongHaul on one battery charge is offset by its high energy efficiency, as battery electric drive has the highest efficiency among alternative drive systems.
This offers transport companies significant advantages in the application scenarios envisaged for the eActros LongHaul due to its low energy costs.
Many of the long-haul applications in the practical operations of transport companies do not require a range greater than the approximately 300 miles that the eActros LongHaul will be able to cover on one charge.
Daimler Trucks will start series production of Mercedes-Benz eActros battery-powered heavy-duty truck next year which will have a range significantly exceeding the 125 miles of a 2018 model.
“The series-production eActros will be on a par with a conventional Actros also in terms of payload,” said the manufacturer.
The eActros will be launched as a two-axle and three-axle truck. Daimler Trucks will embed the vehicle in a holistic ecosystem that includes consulting services for electric mobility, such as analysing routes, checking possible subsidies, supporting operational fleet integration and developing suitable charging-infrastructure solutions.