Warburtons has added a Fuso eCanter to its delivery fleet, for use in urban areas.
The 7.5-tonne truck will be used in the Central Manchester area, operating from Warburtons’ Bolton headquarters.
It joins the bakery’s recently acquired 16t Renault D ZE, which the firm uses in London.
Steve Gray, Warburtons national transport manager, said: “Like all transport operators, we’re conscious of the increasing prevalence of emissions-based restrictions, particularly in city centres, and appreciate that there’s only one direction of travel.
“Zero-emission truck technology is still in its infancy, of course, but the limitations on range which remain the biggest barrier to widespread adoption are not necessarily an issue for Warburtons. This is because many of our trucks are already on low-mileage work. We’ve therefore decided to acquire a Fuso eCanter, as this vehicle aligns perfectly with our operating profile.”
The Fuso eCanter is the first fully electric light-duty truck to enter series production. It has a useable battery capacity of 66kWh, giving a range of around 62 miles.
“Our first impressions of the eCanter are certainly positive,” added Gray. “Its range is more than adequate for our needs and it has been well received by our drivers. It’s smaller than a conventional 7.5-tonner and this compact footprint, coupled with an excellent turning circle that makes it highly manoeuvrable, is a definite advantage for city centre work.”
Although Warburtons’ focus is on volume rather than weight-carrying capacity, the eCanter offers a payload allowance of more than four tonnes, which is not far short of the figure achieved by its diesel-engined stablemate.
Warburtons operates a ‘primary’ fleet of 125 tractor units, which trunk nightly between a nationwide network of bakeries, each of which specialises in a different product range. The eCanter has joined its ‘secondary fleet’ of 800 rigid trucks, which undertake local deliveries to customers from 23 locations stretching from Aberdeen to Newton Abbot.