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Daimler India Commercial Vehicles debuts eCanter in India’s light-duty truck market

Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Daimler Truck AG, has unveiled its plans to enter the Indian battery electric market with the Next-Generation eCanter. The all-electric eCanter, representing DICV’s debut in India’s light-duty truck segment, is scheduled for launch in the market within the next 6 to 12 months. This initiative is part of DICV’s broader strategy to decarbonize its product portfolio.

The all-electric eCanter is currently undergoing advanced trials in India. This battery electric platform originated in Japan, with series production of the first-generation eCanter beginning in 2017. The Next-Generation eCanter made its world premiere in Japan and Europe in the second half of 2022. Since the launch of the first-generation model in 2017, the eCanter has seen sales in hundreds in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Hong Kong. The next-generation eCanter is expected to have a significant presence in major markets worldwide, with 100 variants available.

From a global standpoint, Daimler Truck is dedicated to the Paris Climate Protection Agreement, aiming to establish CO2-neutral transportation worldwide to combat climate change. Their vision includes making new trucks and buses CO2-neutral in Europe, Japan, and the USA by 2039, and globally by 2050. DICV is aligning its efforts with Daimler Truck’s global decarbonization objectives, focusing on achieving a CO2-neutral product portfolio in line with market demands, including India.

Mr. Satyakam Arya, Managing Director & CEO of Daimler India Commercial Vehicles, emphasized their focus on achieving readiness for future products with CO2-neutral propulsion technologies. The upcoming launch of the all-electric eCanter in India marks the first step in their long-term strategy to decarbonize their product portfolio. Acknowledging the coexistence of diesel ICE and CO2-neutral technologies in the Indian market, they highlight the importance of factors like infrastructure availability, green energy, and cost parity. Their initial focus is on achieving product excellence and customer acceptance with the eCanter. They prioritize battery-electric and hydrogen-based propulsion technologies for their future product lineup, aiming to align with market demands. They stress the need for consumer acceptance and total cost of ownership considerations for successful adoption of CO2-neutral vehicles. Through this shift, DICV aims to contribute to India’s progression as a top global commercial vehicle market.

DICV’s roadmap includes battery electric and hydrogen-based drive technologies. They’ve partnered with a major Indian conglomerate to develop a BharatBenz hydrogen fuel cell concept coach. Future plans involve introducing trucks across multiple utility segments, including long haul, mining, construction, POL, dumper, RMC, and others, catering to diverse freight and terrain needs.

India’s CO2-neutral propulsion technology market is considered to be in its early stages, suggesting significant potential for growth in the long term. India is recognized globally as a center for research and development (R&D) and is expected to further establish itself as a hub for product development as new technologies emerge. LNG is seen as a transitional solution for long haul transportation. The company emphasizes the need for a supportive policy framework and widespread consumer acceptance to ensure the economic viability of CO2-neutral vehicles in India.

Also read: Electric truck OEM Tresa Motors unveils its axial flux motor platform

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