Gas supplier Calor opts for electric delivery trucks

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UK gas supplier, Calor, has welcomed its first fully-electric truck, which will be used to deliver bottled butane and propane to customers in central London.

With the company having to operate within London’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) the decision was made to turn to zero-emission battery power in the form of the Fuso eCanter light truck. As well as producing zero exhaust emissions, the fully electric 7.5-tonner is quiet, and highly cost-effective to run.

The eCanter, manufactured by Mercedes-Benz, is the world’s first fully electric light-duty truck to enter series production and represents a major advance in the battle to improve air quality in towns and cities.

The vehicle has a body and payload allowance of up to 4.5 tonnes and offers cost savings worth as much as 1,000 Euro for every 10,000 kilometers covered, compared to a diesel-engined truck. Its electric drivetrain with permanent-magnet motor employs six 420 V and 13.8 kWh lithium-ion batteries, and delivers 129 kW (180 hp) via a single-gear transmission in the rear axle.

“Electric power is a new departure for us, so of course we’ll be monitoring the truck very closely,” said Alan Harrison, national vehicle engineering manager at Calor. “The environmental benefits are clear, but we are also expecting the eCanter to prove highly economical in terms of its total cost of operation. The early signs are certainly promising.”

A single charge gives the eCanter an effective operating range of more than 62 miles (100 km), which is ample for many urban delivery applications. Calor’s vehicle typically covers 30 miles a day, and its batteries are replenished overnight at a recharging point in the depot.

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