It is very difficult to judge how soon the electric truck myth will become a reality. When it does we can be sure it will change the trucking world completely, but it may take some time here in Australia.
This particular truck is the Lion8 launched this week in Quebec, Canada and the announcement says the first vehicle will be delivered later this year. This is a heavy duty rigid coming from a manufacturer which already has a number of electric buses on the road in Canada.
Lion8 is 100 per cent electric powered and has a range of up to 400 km. This Lion project benefitted from the Quebec Government’s support to develop this innovative technology. The new truck is a result of the Government’s 2013-2020 Climate Change Action Plan whose budget is derived from a Canadian Government Green Fund.
This is zero-emission solution and it is estimated 40 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions in Quebec come from transportation, specifically from heavy-duty vehicles. As well as eliminating noise pollution, there is an 80 per cent energy cost reduction and a, claimed 60 per cent operational cost reduction. The company reckon the Lion8 components require very little maintenance which will, consequently, minimise its total cost of ownership.
There are already plenty of other players in the game like this Renault delivering fresh oysters to the restaurants of Paris:
The Daimler group have made some inroads with the Fuso eCanter in both Europe, Japan and the US. Here we see a non-trucking journo take to the streets with the truck:
From Volvo, there is the electric garbage truck, on trial in both Sweden and France:
The industry is trying to gauge how far we are away from the tipping point which will see electric trucks become ubiquitous. This is where Australia comes in. The bottleneck is likely to be battery development and production. A vital ingredient is the lithium in the lithium ion cells and Australia is already trying to ramp up production of lithium in the mining industry and looking to develop a lithium processing capacity in Western Australia.
With the ever increasing fitment of automated and automatic truck transmission, are those of us with the hard-earned skills involved in simply changing gear becoming RoadRanger dinosaurs? For those who haven’t been initiated in the dark arts of double de-clutching, this video shows just how much is involved in the skill.
A consortium including Central Queensland University’s Appleton Institute and HGH Consulting has been awarded a National Heavy Vehicle Regulator contract to conduct a review of fatigue monitoring technology. There are a wide range of fatigue monitoring now on the market and conflicting reports can be found on many of them. This process is aimed at bringing some rigour to the assessment process Read more
Ever since the decision by Caterpillar to get out of the business of making engines for highway trucks there has been a group of enduring Cat fanatics who have kept the dream of driving a truck with a yellow engine alive. Here is the solution on offer for Caterpillar tragics in the USA, fitting remanufactured yellow engines into brand new ‘glider’ trucks.
The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator says it has launched a wide-based truck fire investigation after, what it describes as, a spate of recent truck fires. According to the NHVR, concerns had been raised with the agency regarding several fires emanating in the engine bay of prime movers over the past year.
After all of these years, Rod Hannifey’s initiative to save life with green reflectors has received some backing from the powers that be. In this video the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator has come on board and put its support behind Rod’s great idea.
With the launch of a new microsite by the National Transport Commission, now is the time to have your say about reform of the Heavy Vehicle National Law. The new microsite is designed to be conduit for feedback from stakeholders to the NTC.
Here is a video associating trucking with Jimmy Barnes, using a truly great Australian icon to emphasise the down to earth Australian values which Mack Trucks continues to associate itself with. Jimmy is the perfect soundtrack for this kind of modern nostalgia for good old Aussie attitudes and philosophy.
The last few years have all been about safety, safety, safety and now Volvo has taken the unprecedented step of releasing video footage from inside the cab of a truck involved in a high impact collision, with the aim of reminding all drivers on the importance of putting their safety first.