Mercedes-Benz Trucks has revealed a new generation of its all-electric long-haul truck dubbed the eActros 600, which can be seen as a direct competitor to the rumoured short-range version of the Tesla Semi.
Featuring a cab-forward design typical of European trucks, the eActros 600 is based on an 800-volt electric architecture that accommodates two electric motors with a continuous output of 400 kilowatts (536 bhp) and three lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery packs that offer a total capacity of 621 kilowatt-hours.
There’s also a four-speed transmission designed specifically for use in heavy-duty long-haul transport, and the dual-motor setup is capable of delivering a peak output of 600 kW.
Charging the batteries can be done via the CCS2 connector at rates of up to 400 kW but Mercedes-Benz says that the truck is also capable of accepting up to one megawatt (1 MW) of DC power from a compatible source and that the vehicles will be retrofittable with the proper connector and components once the so-called megawatt charging system (MCS) technology becomes available and is standardised.
The eActros 600 has a range of 321 miles (500 kilometres) on a full charge with a total towing weight of 40 metric tons (88,185 pounds), and a daily distance of 621 miles can be achieved with intermediate charging when the driver needs to take his mandatory rest.
Gallery: Mercedes-Benz eActros 600 (2024)
The payload is around 22 metric tons (48,501 lbs) with a standard European trailer, but the tractor has a gross combination weight of 44 metric tons (97,003 lbs). Two chassis versions are offered: 6x2 with a wheelbase of 4,600 millimetres (181.1 inches) and 4x2 with a 4,000-mm (157.4-in) wheelbase.
Compared to what we know about the Tesla Semi, the eActros seems similar, at least when it comes to hard specs. The long-range Semi was touted by Tesla CEO Elon Musk as having driven a 500-mile course with a combined weight of 81,000 lbs. More recently, one of PepsiCo’s Semis travelled over 1,000 miles on a single day with several charging sessions, logging a stint of almost 372 miles before stopping for a top-up when the battery’s state of charge (SoC) reached nine percent.
The long-haul version of the Tesla Semi has an estimated battery capacity of around 850-900 kWh, but there’s also a rumoured standard- or short-range version of the truck that will reportedly offer about 300 miles of range on a full charge.
For a bit of perspective, the GMC Hummer EV, which is a passenger vehicle, has a battery pack that stores an estimated 212 kWh (usable) for a driving range of over 300 miles.
Getting back to the Mercedes-Benz eActros 600, its maker says that the entire vehicle is covered by a 12-month warranty with unlimited miles, while the electric powertrain is covered under warranty for a maximum of 36 months or 223,693 miles (360,000 km). The high-voltage batteries benefit from the longest warranty period, with a maximum of 72 months, 447,387 miles (720,000 km), or 1,800 charging cycles, whichever comes first.
The lorry features two power take-offs, one electric-mechanical that enables the operation of hydraulic or mechanical work equipment such as tipping, sliding floor, or silo semi-trailers, as well as an electric DC or AC power take-off that can provide between 20 and 90 kW to things like refrigerated trailers.
Inside, the all-electric tractor has a rather conventional layout compared to its American rival, with the steering wheel on one side of the cab and a pair of screens – one for the digital instrument cluster and one for the infotainment system.
A host of safety systems is also present, including Active Brake Assist, Frontguard Assist, Active Sideguard Assist, and Active Drive Assist that combine information from four short-range radars, one long-range radar, and a 270-degree windscreen camera to minimise reaction times.