Morgan Truck Body showed off three new truck bodies at Work Truck Week 2022, March 8-11 in Indianapolis, including a full-height walkthrough compact parcel van body, a dry freight cargo body, and a refrigerated concept body, targeting the growth of electric vehicles.
In collaboration with its JB Poindexter & Co. business unit partner Masterack, the company announced its latest evolution in parcel van walk-through bodies, providing an accessible full-height walk-through in a compact body.
Mounted on a cutaway van chassis, the 16-ft. parcel van body is Morgan Truck Body’s most compact parcel delivery vehicle, and includes a number of new features:
- Wider, taller, and more ergonomic walk-through bulkhead.
- Modular fold-away shelving system designed by Masterack.
- 28 in. modular maximizer sliding door with custom-built shelving on the interior door pocket.
- Narrow rear-frame door opening, protecting shelving and packages during ingress and egress.
- Encapsulated hardwood floor with anti-slip surface.
- Lightweight, thermally efficient, high-density foam core wall panels.
Prototype Dry Freight Cargo Van Body
Morgan also introduced a prototype 24-ft. dry freight cargo van body at the show, optimized for electric vehicles. It incorporates new technologies and features including:
- Weight Reduction – Engineered to offset the added weight associated with EV chassis, Morgan is using advanced composite wall panels and lighter materials for the frame, subframe, and accessories to address payload capacity concerns, all without compromising structural integrity.
- Improved Aerodynamics – Addition of cab-mounted fairing, side skirting, and wheel covers to extend operating range by reducing aerodynamic drag.
- Enhanced Situational Awareness – Cameras, sensors, and artificial intelligence designed to alert drivers to possible road hazards and distracted driving behavior, 360-degree vision systems that provide both the driver and loading personnel full visibility to the surrounding environment, and interior cargo cameras to detect hazardous load shift conditions.
“Morgan is investing heavily in manufacturing capacity for mounting commercial truck bodies to an electrified chassis," said Corby Stover, VP of engineering at Morgan Truck Body. "Strategic locations will be upgraded with charging infrastructure, new tools, and processes, as well as training to ensure we are ready for this new future. In addition to our current R&D efforts, we are developing an Innovation Lab at our Morgantown headquarters that will be dedicated to improving materials and processes for EV upfitting solutions."
Electrified Refrigerated Concept
The final reveal at the show was an electrified refrigerated concept truck body.
Mounted on a Lion Electric Lion6 chassis and using a Thermo King all-electric refrigerated unit, the 24-ft. truck body is constructed with materials designed to maximize thermal efficiency and lighten the load, and includes a full complement of situational awareness sensors. The refrigerated unit is integrated with Lion Electric’s vehicle systems and powered by the vehicle’s onboard batteries, which use Lion’s battery thermal management systems to maximize efficiency.
Morgan’s EV refrigerated truck body is designed with an aluminum-extruded subframe that provides significant weight reduction and composite panels that reduce weight without compromising structural integrity. The truck body is shaped to improve aerodynamics, using cab-mounted fairing, side skirting, and wheel covers that reduce drag and help with energy efficiency and maximize delivery range.
Advanced energy-saving features include a high-speed side curtain door improving thermal efficiency, food chain security, and significant energy savings by maintaining a constant temperature and humidity barrier for electric reefer truck interiors. Interior walls are insulated with three inches of thermal-efficient polyurethane foam to maximize energy savings.
The all-electric transport refrigeration unit (TRU) used in Morgan’s concept vehicle is Thermo King’s recently introduced e1000 unit. The e1000 will satisfy the refrigeration needs of large truck operators with the zero-emission benefits of electrification. As part of Thermo King’s evolve product line, the e1000 unit will provide customers with sustainable solutions with increased reliability, lower weight, and reduced noise.
“Our customers seek energy-efficient solutions that offset the weight added by batteries, without losing cargo capacity and delivery range, and this body addresses these challenges head on,” Morgan Truck Body VP of Engineering Corby Stover said. “The demand for electrification has been a catalyst for innovation. The creation of our Innovation Lab along with our existing R&D center will provide a collaborative approach for Morgan to introduce new technologies and drive the transition to electric vehicles.”