As the freight industry looks to green technology for sustainable solutions, electric vehicle (EV) solutions were on full display at CES 2022. Alongside innovations in digital health, food tech, gaming, and smart home applications, companies exhibited heavy-duty battery-electrics and hybrids alongside lighter duty last-mile vans and even autonomous platforms for closed logistics ecosystems.
Unlike some of technology that’s unveiled at CES, some of these EVs are not only already in production but also currently in commercial use. In other words, the EV tech displayed at this year’s CES was both strong in concept and reality. Ultimately, these entries offered new promise that EVs might finally achieve their lofty goals and see more widespread adoption in the freight industry, reducing emissions as well as trucking’s carbon footprint.
Curious to see what the future of EV-powered freight could look like? Next, we’ll take you on a tour of some of the most promising EV tech displayed at CES 2022 Las Vegas.
EV Trucks & Delivery Vehicles Exhibited at CES 2022
The Farizon Homtruck: Another Step Toward Heavy-Duty EV Trucking
(Photo Source: Geely)
Developed by Farizon Auto, a subsidiary of Hangzhou-based Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, the Farizon Homtruck is one of the more promising entries in the heavy-duty trucking category. Named for its comfortable cab that features both a kitchen and a washroom, the Homtruck offers several powertrain options: a range extender, methanol hybrid, and pure electric with a battery swapping option. The battery-swapping concept is based on standards recently released by China’s Ministry of Industry and Technology, opening the door for charging in mere minutes, rather than hours. First deliveries of the Homtruck are planned for early 2024.
The DAF XG+ with PACCAR Connect: Real-Time Fleet Management
(Photo Source: DAF)
As the industry integrates EV technology, one of the major challenges will be adapting fleet management systems to handle the unique considerations EVs come with. At CES, PACCAR displayed its PACCAR Connect platform, integrated into the DAF XG+, which was recently honored as International Truck of the Year 2022. The PACCAR platform offers real-time robust data and advanced fleet management tools, which promise to integrate with existing fleet management systems. Ultimately, the connected platform will allow fleet managers to monitor their driver and fleet performance using data points like location, mileage, idle time, and more to help them optimize their fleet’s efficiency.
Kenworth T680E + PACCAR Battery Charger: Fast Charging for Regional Delivery
(Photo Source: Kenworth)
PACCAR also exhibited the Kenworth T680E battery electric truck, a Class 8 vehicle equipped with PACCAR’s battery charger. The combination delivers a range of 150 miles for a zero-emission solution designed for regional haul and urban deliveries. The PACCAR charger can fully replenish the battery in three hours.
Evocargo: Flexible Platforms for Closed Ecosystems
(Photo Source: Evocargo)
Evocargo’s entry at CES offered the best of both worlds: big thinking, well-executed in a small, focused ecosystem. The Evocargo EVO.1 is a fully-electric, fully-autonomous platform designed for moving payloads in closed systems, like warehouses, logistics hubs, ports, airports, and construction zones. With a capacity of 1.5 tons and an operating time of 20 hours, these compact platforms pack a punch. Additionally, unlike many of the concepts debuted at CES, Evocargo’s platforms are already in use commercially.
REE Automotive: Revolutionizing Last-Mile Delivery
In designing their autonomous base for EVs, REE Automotive aimed to move beyond existing automotive designs and, instead, embrace greater functionality and efficiency. At CES 2022, they debuted Leopard, a fully-autonomous last-mile delivery concept vehicle, built on their REE platform.
As you can see from the video above, the flat design of the REE base leaves room for 35% more interior space for passengers, cargo & batteries, customizable to their end customers’ goals.
ELMS: Bringing Affordability to Last-Mile Delivery
As the company’s name implies, Electric Last Mile Solutions (ELMS) maintains a tight focus on solutions for that last leg of delivery. As a result, their all-electric vans don’t go much over 55 mph. However, they’re capable of carrying a significant payload—up to 2,100 pounds. Additionally, rather than focusing on bells and whistles, ELMS has their sights set on affordability. Their Urban Delivery model starts at $28,000 and has the distinction of being the first Class 1 electric delivery van in the U.S. The company is also developing an Urban Utility model, a Class 3 electric delivery truck.
TuSimple: The Tech Behind Their 80-Mile Fully Autonomous Test
(Photo Source: TuSimple)
When you’re talking about the future of over-the-road freight, it’s hard to leave AV innovations out of the discussion. TuSimple’s booth at CES 2022 offered some bold glimpses into the future of fully-autonomous trucking. The company showed off its autonomous freight network, which currently runs from Phoenix, Arizona all the way to Orlando, Florida. In addition, TuSimple also highlighted a major success: its first fully unmanned 80-mile test run in Arizona.
These recent advances suggest that, like EV technology, autonomous trucking may not only be possible, but also closer than we think.
Charging Technology on Display at CES 2022
Finally, even though trucks occupied much of the EV spotlight at CES, there were also several interesting entries in the charging category. One of the most notable came from Blink Charging, which offers solutions on both the hardware and software side.
Blink Charging: Combining Hardware and Software for Better Fleet Management
(Photo Source: Blink Charging)
For anyone managing a fleet of electric vehicles, the topic of charging looms large. Blink Charging showcased a number of different solutions, including the MQ 200, a scalable station designed for fleets that need several fast chargers at once. The company’s chargers also connect to the Blink Fleet Management Portal, which offers fleet managers full visibility into the vehicles they oversee. The portal includes real-time reporting and comprehensive analytics that allow managers to track and plan charging to optimize fleet efficiency. It can even integrate with utility companies to optimize fleet charging during cheaper, off-peak hours.
Innovation and Advances in EV Technology
As the freight industry searches for solutions to reduce emissions—as well as its overall carbon footprint—battery-electric technology will continue to play a vital role. The exhibits at CES demonstrated that there are plenty of companies innovating in the space, hinting that electric vehicles may see wider adoption in over-the-road freight sooner rather than later.
Looking to innovate within your over-the-road freight plan this year? One of our experts would be happy to help! Just reach out for a free consultation to get started.
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