Freightliner is set to broaden its selection of electric vehicles by introducing the eM2. - Photo: Daimler

Freightliner is set to broaden its selection of electric vehicles by introducing the eM2.

Photo: Daimler

Freightliner extends its portfolio of electric vehicles with the eM2 battery-electric truck.

Built on the M2 106 Plus platform, these vehicles are being manufactured at Daimler's truck manufacturing plant in Portland, Oregon.

The first production units in the U.S. will be delivered to Ferguson, Hogan Truck Leasing, Penske Truck Leasing, PITT OHIO, Ryder System, Titan Freight Systems and Velocity Truck Rental & Leasing. In Canada, the first units will go to Brossard Leasing and Day & Ross.

New Features of the eM2

The eM2 features a fully integrated, battery-electric Detroit ePowertrain, including Detroit eAxles and batteries.

The vehicle minimizes energy cost per mile by removing the drivetrain and other mechanical components in favor of a lighter, which packages the electric motors and 2-speed transmission directly onto the drive axles.

Multiple battery size options are available, allowing customers to find the right balance between range/runtime and price:

  • Class 6 single motor: provides up to 190 continuous hp, a 194 kWh battery, and a typical range of 180 miles on one charge.
  • Class 7 dual-motor: provides up to 255 continuous hp, a 291 kWh battery, and a typical range of 250 miles on one charge.

The eM2 is designed to deliver goods quietly through neighborhoods and urban areas. For customers who require refrigeration configurations, an electric power takeoff option is available, enabling a choice of refrigeration units that can run on energy from the vehicle's high-voltage battery.

Safety Features for Drivers and Operators

The following safety features now come standard with the eM2:

  • Active Brake Assist 5.0.
  • Tailgate Warning.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control to 0 mph.
  • Lane Departure Warning.
  • Intelligent High-Beams.
  • Automatic Wipers/Headlamps.
  • Side Guard Assist.

Equipped with connected vehicle offerings, Detroit Connect, which offers new eServices and provides charging information and vehicle health data in real-time, the eM2 allows fleet managers to:

  • Plan new routes with real-time range prediction, updating automatically for traffic, weather, topography, and other conditions.
  • Monitor battery health and state-of-charge for multiple units in real time.
  • Collect data for post-trip analysis reports, which can help coach drivers to maximize energy efficiency and battery lifespan.
To reduce energy consumption per mile, the vehicle uses a lighter design incorporating electric motors and a 2-speed transmission directly onto the drive axles. - Photo: Daimler

To reduce energy consumption per mile, the vehicle uses a lighter design incorporating electric motors and a 2-speed transmission directly onto the drive axles.

Photo: Daimler

Testing the eM2 for Road-Ready Delivery

The eM2 underwent summer and winter testing and rough road and crash tests to operate under various conditions and temperatures.

Along with the eCascadia, the eM2 also accumulated more than 1.5 million test miles in customer experience, with fleets driving in various real-world applications in almost 50 real fleets operating across the West Coast, New Jersey, and Canada.

These customer trials have transformed the testing process by collecting real-world vehicle performance experience while also allowing those companies to test the integration of battery-electric trucks into their own fleets.

Meeting Diverse Industry Needs

Continuing its effort to gain real-world experiences, Daimler will begin running an eM2 vocational program with leaders in the truck equipment manufacturing industry and their customers to focus on providing zero-emission solutions for the unique requirements of vocational customers and applications.

This program mainly targets the utility, sweeper, dump, towing, recovery, and refuse segments and will be packaged and designed for maximum frame space utilization with minimal impact on upfit, especially in the utility segment.

The eM2 vocational program aims to offer operators the familiarity and experience of the M2 chassis while allowing for consistency and ease in the transition to battery-electric operations.

The eM2 vocational vehicles are validating new target specifications with work truck customers in the real world (actual production vehicle specifications are subject to ongoing tests):

  • Up to 330 kWh of usable battery capacity.
  • Target of 150 miles range, depending on the application.
  • Wheelbases between 155-inch and 220-inch.
  • Only 10 inches of back-of-cab protrusion space for battery.
  • Both electric and mechanical ePTO options to support hydraulic and battery-powered body equipment using the vehicle's HV battery.

The availability of a mechanical PTO choice provides versatility, reduces obstacles to getting started, and enables a quicker introduction of an eM2 vehicle for vocational customers.

The PTO utilizes the identical interface employed by customers presently in their diesel Freightliner M2s, ensuring effortless integration and operator approval.

Supporting Customers on Their Electrification Journey

Detroit eConsultants can connect the dots for customers, including right-sizing infrastructure, choosing ideal chargers, navigating rebates and incentives, assisting with site selection, providing connectivity insights, offering photovoltaic and energy storage options, and more.

They also introduce customers to the comprehensive line of Detroit eFill Chargers, evaluate duty cycles, and help identify ways to put eM2 trucks to work efficiently.

Detroit's Charger Management System gives fleet managers the insights to understand their fleets' energy consumption patterns and create a charging schedule that reduces the cost per mile.

There is a lot to consider when planning to incorporate more electric trucks into a fleet, which makes planning even more crucial. Our article on electric trucks helps customers bridge that gap. 

Editor's Note: This was orignially publish May 2023 and update.

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