MAN Truck & Bus had a near-series prototype of its upcoming electric truck, driven today in public for the first time on the site of the former Berlin Tempelhof Airport. A special technical feature of the electric commercial vehicle, which will be launched on the market in 2024, is its capacity for future megawatt charging.
ABB E-mobility, a global provider of charging solutions for electric vehicles, aims to bring megawatt charging technology to market maturity in the next three years. MAN and ABB E-mobility are thus getting ready for the next phase of electromobility: operational capability for heavy-duty long-haul trucking with daily ranges between 600 and 800 kilometres.
Moreover, with their commitment to electromobility, the two companies are signalling that the industry is ready to proceed and that legislators must establish the policy framework for zero-emission road haulage.
The Federal Minister of Digital and Transport Dr Volker Wissing. said, “We need to decarbonize road freight transport to achieve our climate targets. To make this happen, we are focusing above all on the market ramp-up of climate-friendly commercial vehicles and the development of a corresponding high-performance charging infrastructure.”
He added, “The project we are supporting on high-performance charging for e-trucks on the A2 is providing important learnings. What is important now, is to get more e-trucks on the road quickly. The partnership between MAN and ABB shows that we are on the right track.”
During the minister’s test drive in the MAN electric truck, Alexander Vlaskamp, CEO of MAN Truck & Bus, emphasized that “accelerating the expansion of the charging infrastructure is the only way to achieve the evolution of transport and meet climate targets.”
He also highlighted why MAN is relying on battery-electric powertrains for future carbon-free commercial vehicle fleets: low operating costs and the best overall energy footprint. “As part of the Traton Group, we are already participating in a joint venture with industry partners to develop and operate a high-performance public charging network with a target of at least 1,700 green electricity charging points across Europe,” Vlaskamp added.
To enable long-distance daily ranges between 600 and 800 kilometres, the MAN electric truck, due to be launched in 2024, is already equipped with the technical prerequisites for future megawatt charging systems. ABB E-mobility, as a leading global provider of charging solutions, intends to bring such charging systems to market quickly.
Frank Mühlon, CEO of ABB E-mobility said, “We aim to facilitate electromobility in all areas. At ABB E-mobility we have been working on developing the corresponding performance standards for many years. Megawatt charging will require new power technology with more than 1,000 volts, so systemic electrical safety and reliability are essential at these power levels and for the foreseeable use cases.”
“ABB E-mobility is the ideal provider to take on these challenges, as we can significantly accelerate research and development based on our existing technologies. Our shared ambition is to bring this new technology to market within three years. In the past, such development phases have often taken much longer,” said Frank Mühlon.
A binding and uniform standard is also crucial for the introduction of megawatt charging technology. Germany could set benchmarks here: more than 20 partners from industry and science, including MAN and ABB, are working on the high-performance charging project (known as “HoLa” in German), which is funded by the German government and is the world’s first megawatt charging project.
Two high-performance charging points with megawatt charging systems (MCS) are being built at four locations along the A2 federal highway. The project is intended to serve as the basis for nationwide expansion.