Daimler is in the news again, this time with two big announcements regarding its trucking business.
According to Business Insider, the German auto company unveiled a pair of electric semi trucks that it intends to mass-produce beginning in 2021.
They claim both vehicles will have a range exceeding 200 miles per battery charge, 230 for the eM2 and 250 for the eCascadia.
Daimler will be providing customers with 30 trucks this year for test-driving in order to improve performance before they are fully commercialized.
New E-Mobility Division Added
In the second announcement, Daimler revealed a new e-mobility division with the opening of an autonomous driving research center in Portland, Oregon.
This brings together five individual groups within Daimler that were all concerned with autonomous driving efforts.
The company has pledged $3 billion will be spent on R&D, including on e-vehicles, improved connectivity, and autonomous driving technology.
Among the objectives of the new research center, Daimler will be looking into advanced battery and charging technology, energy management, and other next-generation semi-truck technologies.
Analysts have speculated that the moves from Daimler are a reaction to new upstarts in the auto and trucking industry, such as Tesla, who’s forthcoming semi is anticipated to have a 500-mile range per charge.
Martin Daum, from the Daimler Board of Management for Trucks and Buses, said, “With the formation of our new global E-Mobility Group, we will maximize the impact of our investments in this key strategic technology. Thus, we can pursue the best solutions in batteries, charging solutions and energy management.”
Daimler Trucks & Buses, with its subsidiary brands Mercedes-Benz, FUSO, Freightliner, Western Star, BharatBenz, Setra, and Thomas Built Buses, has one of the largest international product portfolios. Currently, it is the market leader in Germany, Europe, and the NAFTA region.