SANDY SPRINGS (dpa-AFX) - German automaker Daimler AG's Mitsubishi Fuso division announced the global launch of its all-electric FUSO eCanter light-duty trucks in New York City on Thursday. Daimler noted that delivery service giant United Parcel Service is the first U.S. commercial partner for the eCanter.
The first three trucks were provided by Daimler to UPS, while eight more trucks were offered to four New York City-based not-for-profit organizations - Wildlife Conservation Society, New York Botanical Garden, Habitat for Humanity New York City, and Big Reuse Brooklyn.
The eCanter is the world's first series-produced all-electric light-duty truck and will be delivered to customers starting this year in the U.S., Europe and Japan. The truck was developed by Daimler in response to the public's need for a zero-emission, zero-noise truck for continuously increasing inner-city distribution.
Daimler plans to deliver 500 trucks to customers within the next two years and intends to start large-scale production in 2019. The eCanter is built on the same assembly lines in Japan and Portugal, where more than 70,000 diesel Canter trucks are built each year.
The eCanter has a range of 100 kilometers and a load capacity up to three and a half tons - depending on body and usage. The vehicle's electric powertrain contains six high voltage lithium ion battery packs with 420 V and 13.8 kWh each.
Daimler noted that in comparison with a conventional diesel truck, it offers savings up to 1,000 Euro per 10,000 kilometers on operating costs.
To celebrate the launch, Daimler has set up a temporary installation in New York City's East Village called 'Energy Station of the Future.'
In a separate statement, UPS said that the three medium-duty electric trucks it purchased from Daimler will be deployed in the U.S. at locations to be determined. The trucks join the more than 770 electric or hybrid electric vehicles operated by UPS in urban cities around the world.
UPS recently set a goal that by 2020, one in four vehicles purchased by it annually will use alternative fuels or advanced technology. The company has invested more than $750 million in alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles as well as fueling stations globally since 2009.
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