Ruan recently in-serviced two new battery electric trucks with a goal of testing them in real-world applications to strategically determine how they can be used to help meet our customers’ growing sustainability goals.
As a proud member of Freightliner’s Electric Vehicle Council, Ruan values the early opportunity to test the eCascadia tractor and eM2 straight truck. The test units are part of Freightliner’s Customer Experience (CX) Fleet, an ongoing co-creation initiative that engages customers in the commercial electric vehicle development process by deploying trucks in real-world applications. At least 14 different U.S. Freightliner customers on the Electric Vehicle Council, collectively representing over 150,000 Class 6-8 trucks currently on the road, are actively testing the new Freightliner CX Fleet. As part of the broader fleet testing effort, almost 50 Freightliner customers have accumulated a combined 1 million electric miles while performing real-world commercial vehicle applications.
According to Daimler Trucks North America, which produces the Freightliner brand of trucks, real-world usage of the test fleets and ongoing feedback from the Electric Vehicle Council will inform the final production versions of both the eCascadia and the eM2.
The Class 8 eCascadia is designed for local and regional distribution and drayage; the eM2 is a Class 6-7 truck designed for local distribution, pickup and delivery, food and beverage delivery, and last-mile logistics applications.
Ruan is testing the eCascadia in two applications over a three-month trial—first in Fontana, CA, hauling retail products, and then in Tulare, CA, hauling tankers of liquid milk for our dairy operations. The eM2 will be used in Fontana for the entire trial, making local deliveries for our customer, Safelite AutoGlass.
In general, the benefits of heavy-duty electric trucks are compelling within the industry. Notably, they have the potential to reduce environmental concerns due to zero emissions, provide an improved experience for professional drivers, cut maintenance requirements, and eventually offer cost savings to carriers. Electric yard trucks have been deployed for years, and they are often the truck of choice for yard hostlers for being cooler, smoother, quieter, and cleaner. In addition, since they have no diesel engine, transmission, or emission control, there is less to maintain and repair.
“We are very excited about expanding our strategic adoption of electric vehicles,” said Vice President of Fleet Services Brad Gehring. “We’ve had great success using electric yard tractors, so advancing to local deliveries is the natural next step in our progression.”
Read more about Ruan's positive experience with an electric yard truck here.