Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC), a subsidiary of Daimler Truck, recently unveiled the next generation of its eCanter electric truck model.
The original Fuso eCanter was introduced in 2017 and since then, around 450 units have been delivered to customers in Japan, Europe, North America, Australia, and New Zealand, covering a total of over six million kilometres (4 million miles).
The new eCanter, teased in March, represents a big step forward as it actually expands the eCanter from a single version to an entire family to cover a wide range of applications.
There will be some 28 variants for the Japanese market and approximately 80 variants for overseas markets, which is a sign that the eCanter is ready for prime time. At least according to the MFTBC's presentation, the new version will be produced on a large scale.
Sales will begin in Japan in Spring 2023, and the eCanter will be available across all Fuso branches in the country. The new electric trucks will be offered also in Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
Next Generation eCanter
The new eCanter appears to be a really interesting light truck with a lot of configurations and features, as well as a redesigned interior and exterior.
In addition to the current 7.5-ton (GVW) model, there will be weight classes ranging from 4.25 tons to 8.55 tons. A new wide cab (2,130 mm) will join the standard cab width (1,700 mm), and the range of wheelbases has also been expanded, from 2,500 mm up to 4,750 mm.
In terms of drive units, the Next Generation eCanter is equipped with an eAxle, which integrates an electric motor (110 or 129 kW) with the rear axle. According to MFTBC, it was crucial to make a more compact drivetrain structure and expand to the product lineup.
On top of that, depending on the wheelbase, there will be an option to equip the truck with one, two or three batteries - 41.3 kWh each (so 41.4, 82.6 or 123.9 kWh).
Depending on the battery and version, the range of the eCanter is estimated at respectively 80 km (50 miles), 140 km (87 miles) and 200 km (124 miles), according to the company's in-house test in JE05 mode.
That's a noticeable improvement, compared to about 100 km (62 miles) of range in the case of the outgoing eCanter equipped with an 82.9 kWh battery.
MFTBC says that the Next Generation eCanter is ready for normal AC charging (on-board charger) and DC fast charging (although power has not been disclosed in the press release), as well as power export (V2X at some 10 kW).
In Japan, the vehicle will be used with the CHAdeMO fast charging standard, while in other markets - especially in Europe - we can be pretty sure that CCS Combo 2 will be utilised.
Among many interesting features, the new eCanter can be optionally equipped with the "ePTO" power take-off unit, which enables special purpose applications, like a tipper, rear crane, or climate-controlled van body.
There are also various EV-specific features, like four levels of regenerative braking, battery pre-conditioning (during AC charging), and some energy-saving setting, regarding heating (limiting heating to the seats and steering wheel).
The new MFTBC’s telematics solution Truckonnect will allow to track the remaining mileage, and remaining EV battery capacity, while the new Charging Management System includes a timer to charge vehicle batteries when electricity costs are lowest.
On top of that comes safety features:
- Active Sideguard Assist: "featured for the first time in a FUSO light-duty truck, reduces the risk of accidents on turns by monitoring the blind spot on the side of the truck. When necessary, the feature activates a collision mitigation brake system."
- Active Brake Assis: "an emergency braking system with improved spatial recognition and pedestrian detection."
- Active Attention Assist: "The driver attention monitoring system, supports the prevention of fatigue-induced incidents with white line recognition, various sensors and a facial recognition camera, warning the driver with a buzzer and dashboard display."
- Intelligent Headlight Control: "automatically switches between high or low beams, and Traffic Sign Recognition, which displays traffic signs recognised by the camera on the dashboard, are also featured."
- Electric Parking Brake: "maintains stable braking force on hills"
- Back Eye Camera System: "assists drivers in avoiding collisions while reversing"
To popularise the new electric truck and increase the scale, MFTBC is simultaneously launching the FUSO eMobility Solutions arm to support customers with comprehensive support in all aspects (from financial, through charging and other even battery life cycle management).
Let's hope that the Next Generation eCanter will also be competitively priced.
Gallery: Next Generation Fuso eCanter
Next Generation Fuso eCanter specs:
- weight classes: 4.25 tons to 8.55 tons (from 5 tons in Japan)
- cab width: 1,700 mm (standard) and 2,130 mm (wide)
- wheelbase: from 2,500 mm up to 4,750 mm
- battery options and range (1-3 batteries):
S: 41.3 kWh - 80 km (50 miles)
M: 82.6 kWh - 140 km (87 miles)
L: 123.9 kWh - 200 km (124 miles)
* in-house range test in JE05 mode
- rear-wheel drive (eAxle)
- system output: 110 kW or 129 kW
- AC or DC fast charging
- power export: up to 10 kW
* numbers might vary depending on the market