September debut for Mercedes long-haul electric truck

Mercedes-Benz will unveil its eActros long-haul electric truck at the IAA Transportation show in Hanover in September, claiming that the vehicle will make possible ranges comparable to combustion-engined vehicles. The 40-tonne truck was first announced in September 2020 and the Hannover display vehicle will be a 'concept prototype' previewing the design of the new truck. Alongside teaser images of the forthcoming truck Mercedes-Benz has released more technical details of the eActros LongHaul.

It will employ new batteries using lithium-ion phosphate (LFP) cell technology, which promises more usable energy and a long service life. Using a charging station with one megawatt output, replenishment of the batteries from 20 to 80% will take only 30 minutes. Mercedes-Benz adds that a fully charged eActros Longhaul will be able to travel up to 500km (300 miles) between charges, comparable to a combustion-engined truck and making two-shift working by operators viable.

With regulations across the European Union requiring truck drivers to take a break of at least 45 minutes after 4.5 hours of driving, Mercedes-Benz believes the combination of range and rapid charging capability will make the eActros LongHaul a highly practical option for haulage operators. They will be able to plan routes around driver breaks and charging facilities much more easily. The tractor unit is among the eActros test fleet prototypes which are already undergoing intensive testing, with Mercedes-Benz intending to start tests on public roads later in 2022.

This will quickly be followed by near-production ready prototypes being placed with potential customers for real-world testing, ahead of the eActros Longhaul going into production in 2024.

"The electrification of heavy long-distance transport is the next milestone on our road to CO2-neutrality," said Mercedes-Benz Trucks CEO Karin Radstrom. "The eActros LongHaul is a battery-electric vehicle which is planned to be economically feasible for our customers."