Truckipedia Blog Category - Here for the Long-Haul: Why Electric Trucks Are the Future
There is a lot of debate about electric trucks and whether they can be successful in the long-haul trucking industry. Some argue that the investment of adding an electric truck to their heavy-duty truck fleet is too hefty to justify and that electric trucks are more suitable for short-haul applications. While these are all valid concerns, the technology of electric trucks has evolved and continues to improve.
New and innovative technologies won’t immediately gain acceptance or traction in the first few years of their introduction. Just two examples of this are when the New York Times called the automobile ‘impractical’ in 1902 and incorrectly predicted the ‘demise’ of the laptop in 1985. These initial thoughts were justified back then, as the first vehicles were pricey, and the first laptops were heavy and had poor battery life.
Much like the resistance to electric trucks today, on the other side of the skepticism are forward-thinking individuals and companies that are paving the way for their industry. And as the technology of electric trucks continues to improve, fleet managers are already introducing them to their operations to remain competitive. As one of the top trucking dealerships in the country, here’s why Velocity Truck Centres believes electric trucks are the future of long-haul trucking.
1. Electric Trucks are Already in Operation
The introduction of the first wave of electric trucks in the industry has been a successful one for short-haul applications and urban deliveries. Although still in their infancy, electric trucks have proven to be a cost-effective and environmentally-sustainable solution to traditional, fuel-driven trucks.
Companies that have added electric trucks to their fleet report lower maintenance costs, operational costs, and performance. Another benefit is government support of electric vehicles in general. Businesses are offered tax incentives and grants to make electric vehicles more affordable to acquire.
2. Cutting Edge Tools Enhance the Experience
Electric trucks are equipped with smart tools that help you understand the charging needs of your routes, how much energy will be used, where you can charge on the road, and features like traffic patterns and the ability to view vehicle readiness. These tools help improve efficiency and productivity and, most importantly, improve driver safety.
3. The Technology for Electric Trucks is Improving
Some of the main concerns about electric trucks for long-haul trucking are that the battery life is insufficient for extended trips and there aren’t enough charging stations to make them feasible. Like the first automobile and laptop, electric truck technology will continue to improve.
There’s a greater understanding of different variables, such as ensuring trucks are adequately charged, the need for charging during trips, and the logistics involved in preparing electric trucks for a long-haul trip. While these issues are complex, you can expect the next waves of electric trucks to improve each time.
**Please note that listed tools will exist for eCascadia and eM2, but will all be available via Detroit Connect (eRange prediction tool, post-trip analysis, charger management system, cab/battery preconditioning, etc). Preconditioning will be possible to set from inside the cab, but you won’t be able to delay charge start (that would have to be programmed remotely, using the eTools listed above).