Daimler AG commercial vehicle brand Mercedes-Benz Trucks has won the 2021 Truck Innovation Award for its electro-mobility solutions with its eActros battery-electric heavy-duty truck (BEV), and its Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck, a hydrogen-based fuel-cell electric vehicle concept (FCEV).
The prestigious award was presented virtually to Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management, Daimler Truck AG and Sven Ennerst, Head of Daimler Trucks Product Engineering, with a video clip at the Daimler headquarter in Stuttgart, Germany.
The Truck Innovation trophy, which acknowledges both the enormous technological changes and the energy transition that are taking place within the automotive sector, has been awarded by the International Truck of the Year (IToY) jury, a group of 25 commercial vehicle editors and senior journalists, representing major trucking magazines from Europe and South Africa. Fleet Transport magazine has represented Ireland on the jury since 2003.
With a winning score of 128 votes, the Mercedes-Benz’s electric trucks was shortlisted against Volvo Trucks’ heavy-duty BEV concepts and DAF’s 2nd Generation CF Electric.
The International Truck of the Year jury, which had the opportunity to get to know the previous prototype of the eActros and the latest closer-to-the-series-production-vehicle, praised the handling characteristics of the battery-powered truck in distribution applications and its performance in terms of acceleration and driveability. In addition, the IToY journalists praised the user-friendliness for a quick and easy transition from a conventional internal combustion engine vehicle. eActros is planned to enter into series production in 2021.
Similarily, the IToY jury members appreciated Mercedes-Benz Trucks comprehensive approach to electro-mobility, based on a clear-cut long-term strategy, on a global modular electric powertrain platform and on in-house development of main critical components. It’s a wide-range solution portfolio, which spans from the pre-production eActros to the battery powered eActros Long Haul, to the fuel-cell liquid-hydrogen concept GenH2 Truck for long-haulage applications, which is planned to start operational customer trials in 2023.
Summing up the jury vote, Gianenrico Griffini, International Truck of the Year Chairman commented: “Shaping CO2 neutral transport requires the swift development of battery-electric and fuel cell trucks. This development needs to be supported by a long-term electro-mobility strategy, which is precisely what Mercedes-Benz Trucks is doing.”
According to IToY rules, a Truck Innovation Award nominee must be an advanced-technology vehicle with a gross vehicle weight over 3.5-tonnes either fitted with an alternative driveline or have an alternative fuel-system. Otherwise, it must feature specific high-tech solutions with regard to connectivity (whether semi or fully autonomous driving systems) a “platooning” capability, or advanced support services such as remote diagnostics.