Isuzu's all-electric NPR-HD truck at the 2018 Work Truck Show Photo: Aaron Marsh / Fleet Owner
No diesel here. Here's a look at Isuzu's battery-electric NPR-HD with the cab tipped forward for a view of the electric motor.

It’s electric: NACFE releases first electric truck report

We issued our first Guidance Report last week during ACT Expo. NACFE recently expanded its scope into emerging technologies and we could not think of a more appropriate place to begin than with a deep dive into commercial battery electric vehicles.

Those vehicles are here today and are a growing alternative to traditional diesel, alternative fuel and hybrid powertrains. Every day we read something new about battery electric vehicles whether automotive or commercial vehicle. Yet the whole subject seems to have people with strong opinions on both sides of the question about battery powered vehicles in commercial vehicle applications. During our research comments varied from the analytical to the emotional.

According to Rick Mihelic, program manager, the commercial battery electric vehicle is making that transition from blue sky to real world. The move is likely accelerated by the progress in automotive EVs, but there are as many differences as there are similarities between trucks and cars. The move is also being accelerated by capital and speculative investment on the order of billions of dollars. That money has spawned interest in trucking from a world of previously uninterested parties. “New companies, partnerships and mergers are being created at an accelerated rate I’ve not seen in my long career in transportation,” he said.

More remarkably yet, according to Rick, is the fact that conservative fleets who traditionally took the Missouri “show me” attitude to every new trucking idea, seem to be investing significantly in technology concepts and companies that have not yet seen the road.

“It is a truly amazing shift for the trucking industry. The pace of developments, the growth in the interested parties and the shear scope of changes being discussed makes this an exciting time to be in trucking,” he adds.

At NACFE, we are helping you keep up with the future while also taking advantage of the present. The Run on Less report demonstrates that the age of the 10-mpg truck is already with available production technology and good driving practices. The upcoming Confidence Report on use of solar in trucking shows there are new efficiency products entering the marketplace.

The Guidance Report on commercial battery electric vehicles is a guidebook to assist in future planning. NACFE’s goal is to provide you unbiased, quality information to move the needle on freight efficiency.

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