Jun 9, 2022 - 04:12 pm

Walmart trials Freightliner eCascadia and Nikola Tre trucks

US retail giant Walmart this week said it was expanding zero-emission logistics pilots adding Nikola and Daimler Truck’s Freightliner as manufacturers. The heavy-duty electric trucks are part of Walmart’s ongoing efforts to completely decarbonise its global operations by 2040.

The fleet includes about 10,000 tractors and 80,000 trailers. The new orders regard all-electric large trucks. Freightliner’s eCascadia and Nikola’s Tre BEV will work out of a distribution centre in Fontana, California, starting this summer.

Walmart says the electric cabs will pick up loads from suppliers and delivering them to a consolidation centre in the area. “Short-range deliveries such as these are a great use case for electric trucks, and we’re excited to be among the first to test them in our operations,” writes Walmart.

In the status update, the company also mentions running zero-emissions yard trucks in distribution centres over the last year and says it has found they provide approximately a 50% emissions reduction compared to diesel trucks, taking into account how the electricity is created and delivered.

It also plans to test hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered yard trucks by Texas-based Capacity. It considers hydrogen as “an option for our long-haul over the road tractors” without going into further detail yet.

Walmart is also trialling a refrigerated trailer with Thermo King in the US. The trailer runs on 100% electricity until the batteries are fully depleted. The company explains that the refrigeration unit cuts over to diesel if the electricity is consumed mid-haul.

Overall, Walmart has yet to understand which solution fits the fleet. Fernando Cortes, Walmart’s Senior VP, told Reuters, “We know that for us to decarbonise our fleet, there’s no one solution that can get us really to scale, and that’s ready to give us that future that we want.”

Commenting on Tesla, the US manager said, “We do have the option to purchase Tesla’s electric Semi-trucks, but we not have shared any public commitments”. Only Walmart Canada currently has reserved 130 Tesla Semi as reported.

It remains to be seen if the Nikola Tre and Freightliner eCascadia are perhaps the better and more so available contenders. Tesla has yet to start manufacturing the Semi.

The Daimler truck brand Freightliner had unveiled the production version of the eCascadia in May and says it already holds orders for over 700 units. It is also working with Cummins on a fuel cell version expected by 2024.

Nikola Motor, for its part, had started series production of the Tre BEV in March and delivered the first vehicles from the pilot line as early as the end of 2021.

walmart.com, reuters.com

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Found on electrive.com
https://www.electrive.com/2022/06/09/walmart-trials-freightliner-ecascadia-and-nikola-tre-trucks/
09.06.2022 16:04