Holcim to acquire 1,000 eActros

Building materials producer Holcim plans to add 1,000 Mercedes-Benz eActros 600 trucks to its fleet. The majority of these e-trucks are to be used with silo trailers for the transportation of building materials such as cement. For Mercedes, this is the largest single order planned to date for the eActros 600.

Image: Daimler Truck

The emphasis here is on “planned individual order”, because although both sides have signed a letter of intent, this is not yet a binding order for the 1,000 electric trucks. The partners have left open a timeline for when the first tranches can be expected. However, the full technical specifications of the model have not been public for long: the eActros 600 was unveiled in October 2023. With a battery capacity of around 600 kWh (hence the type designation eActros 600), Mercedes’ electric heavy-duty truck should be able to travel over 500 kilometres.

The manufacturer is targeting series production of the new model for the end of 2024. This means that the first series production vehicles will not reach Holcim until 2025 at the earliest. The Swiss building materials manufacturer has in mind equipping the majority of the eActros 600 with silo trailers and using them “for the demanding transportation of building materials such as cement.
transportation of building materials such as cement”, according to an accompanying press release. Holcim is headquartered in Switzerland, but is represented in more than 60 countries with around 60,000 employees.

“Holcim is one of Mercedes-Benz Trucks’ most important customers in the construction industry,” emphasizes Karin Rådström, CEO Mercedes-Benz Trucks. “We are very pleased that the company decided for the eActros 600 in its transformation towards alternative drives. Our electric truck with the three-pointed star sets new standards in terms of efficiency.”

“Holcim is advancing the transition to more sustainable and efficient transportation by decarbonizing our operations’ logistics,” adds Miljan Gutovic, Region Head Europe at Holcim. “We are excited to be partnering with Mercedes-Benz Trucks to electrify our fleet, accelerating our goal for 30% of our heavy-duty truck purchases or contracts to be zero-emission by 2030.”

The building materials producer relies on electric trucks from various manufacturers. Last year, the company ordered 130 FM Electric and FH Electric electric trucks from Volvo Trucks. This is the first tranche of a framework agreement for up to 1,000 electric trucks by 2030. The first 130 e-trucks in question are to be used in France, Germany, Switzerland and the UK – and the order will be completed in the course of this year.

Holcim also already has experience with electric trucks in ongoing operations: the Group’s Swiss subsidiary has been operating three electric concrete mixers from Designwerk (a Volvo subsidiary) since 2021, and the Group has also ordered ten Hyliion ERXs in 2022. Holcim is also open to hydrogen trucks: the company is one of five test customers to take delivery of a GenH2 truck from Daimler Truck in the middle of last year. The hydrogen model should be ready for series production in 2027. Even with regard to the framework agreement with Volvo Trucks, it is not clear whether it only has to be BEVs: This is because the announcement about the Holcim-Volvo deal at the time spoke of electric trucks, not battery-electric trucks. Holcim could therefore also purchase the upcoming fuel cell truck from Volvo at a later date (the prototypes use the FH chassis) – but the emphasis is on “could”, this has not been confirmed.

Meanwhile, other customers have already set their sights on the Mercedes-Benz eActros 600. The 40-tonne truck houses an electric axle developed in-house with two electric motors and a four-speed gearbox. The system is designed for 800 volts and generates 400 kW continuous and 600 kW peak power. According to Mercedes-Benz Trucks, the drive was specially developed for use in heavy-duty long-distance transport – and was therefore deliberately equipped with four gears. The medium-duty eActros 300/400, which is already on the market, combines two electric motors with a two-speed gearbox.



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