Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus has announced the start of small-scale series production of its electric medium-duty truck, the Fuso eCanter.
All eCanter trucks for U.S. and European markets will be produced at the production plant in Tramagal, Portugal, in line with conventional diesel Fuso trucks.
Mitsubishi Fuso introduced the eCanter at the Work Truck Show earlier this year, saying that it would be made available in the U.S., Europe, and Japan as part of a two-year lease. The lease period would allow companies to use the vehicle before trading up to the next generation.
“With today’s start of production of the eCanter, we become the first global manufacturer to produce an all-electric truck in series,” Marc Llistosella, president and CEO of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corp. and head of Daimler Trucks Asia. “Our Portuguese plant not only produces the trucks for Europe and the U.S., but has also benefitted from a close cooperation with the authorities in Portugal and Lisbon, having tested the trucks there since 2014.”
The Class 4 truck has a 100-mile range, 15,995-pound gross vehicle weight rating, and a 9,380-pound payload capacity. The batteries can be quick-charged within an hour at a DC charging station or over the course of eight hours using a 230-volt outlet. The vehicle will also have flexible battery options to allow customers that need less range than 100 miles to opt for fewer batteries and increase payload capacity.
After entering small-scale series production, the natural next step will be large-scale series production in the future, according to Mitsubishi Fuso. Experiences gained from teh customers of this small production run will be used to help Fuso launch large-scale production in the coming year.
The Fuso eCanter is produced in line with the conventional Canter truck at the Tramagal plant. The electric-powertrain-specific components will be installed in specific boxes along the production line.
Vehicles coming from Tramagal, Portugal, will be handed over to customers within Europe and the US within the next month.