6 Electric Semi Truck and Van Companies to Watch During 2020

6 Electric Semi Truck and Van Companies to Watch During 2020

Over the last few months, we’ve paid great attention on companies bring electric semi trucks. The spotlight startups and automotive giants working to electrify dirty delivery and distribution trucks in the coming years. That’s right. We’re talking all-electric heavy-duty big rigs, semi-trucks, box trucks, delivery vans and more. 

Unlike the regulatory challenges that pioneering aviation companies have to deal with before they can take flight, the major obstacles facing the automotive industry are ones of scale, price points and battery technology. There’s also the challenge of building an interstate network of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations capable of keeping the next generation of long-haul trucks on the road. 

However, because 80 percent of freight (PDF) in the United States is transported less than 250 miles, the front-of-the-pack all-electric trucks are designed to travel on predictable regional or last-mile routes that allow them to return to a central depot for charging. 

That doesn’t mean building the centralized charging infrastructure will be easy. In a joint survey that GreenBiz conducted with UPS last year on fleet electrification, 92 percent of survey respondents said their facility isn’t “very well equipped” to accommodate commercial charging needs.

Here ar7 Electric Semi Truck and Van Companies to Watch During 2020.

BYD

BYD is focusing on short-haul of goods, primarily in America’s ports, rail yards and freight-handling facilities. BYD is headquartered in Shenzhen, China, with offices and an assembly factory in Lancaster, California. In 2020, it’s preparing to roll out more of its battery-electric trucks to customers across the United States.

BYD is the world’s largest EV maker in terms of volume of vehicles sold (including buses, forklifts, cars and rail systems). That includes its long-range battery-electric Class 8 Day Cab, a Class 6 truck, a terminal tractor and two models of all-electric refuse trucks. BYD’s Class 8 Day Cab has a range of 125 miles and a top speed of 65 miles per hour. The truck’s battery packs can recharge in as little as two hours with a high-speed direct current system or about 14 hours with a standard 240-volt charging system. 

Chanje

A Los Angeles-based, Chinese-backed startup called Chanje.  The company’s nearly 30-foot long V8100 electric medium-duty panel van can carry upto 3-tons. What’s more, the van’s lithium-ion battery pack holds enough charge for a 150-mile range. According to the company, that’s more than double the number of miles the majority of commercial delivery vans drive in a day.

Daimler Trucks- #2 Electric Semi Truck

In 2018, German automaker Daimler, the largest truck maker in the world, announced its all-electric 18-wheeler: the Freightliner eCascadia.  The electric semi truck has a 250-mile range and was designed for regional transportation and port service. In addition, Daimler’s other all-electric model, the Freightliner eM2 106, has a 230-mile range and is intended for more local distribution and deliveries.

Nikola Motors 

The next is a Phoenix-based startup that got the naming rights to Tesla’s first name. But, over the past five years, Nikola Motor Co. has slowly but surely emerged as a pioneer in this space. The company has created the Nikola One and Nikola Two for North American roadways, and the Nikola Tre for Asia, Australia and Europe. Each semi-truck will be available with either fully electric or hydrogen fuel cell electric capabilities, and their anticipated ranges are between 500 and 700 miles. The company has yet to publicly release exact pricing for each of its three semi-truck models.

To refuel the tens of thousands of hydrogen-powered big rigs it plans to put on America’s roads, the company plans to build a coast-to-coast network of 700 hydrogen stations across the United States by 2028. The company will utilize renewable energy sources like wind and water at each of its refueling stations. It will take between 10 and 15 minutes to refill one of its semi-trucks.

Rivian

Michigan-based Rivian has yet to produce an ev truck especially with the electric semi truck routing features it initally stated it would have when it launched. for the masses. Amazon has been a huge company supported and will have the first production unit that rolls off the line. In addition, Amazon expects to have 10,000 Rivian delivery vehicles on the road by 2022, and Rivian said that all 100,000 electric delivery trucks will be in service by 2023.

Tesla- #1 Electric Semi Truck

Given Tesla’s leadership with EVs, it’s no surprise the company is at the forefront of replacing diesel-guzzling, long-haul big rigs with all-electric, heavy-duty electric semi truck. Tesla first announced the Tesla Semi in 2017 and said production would begin in early 2019. That production date was later was pushed back to late 2020.

There are two Tesla Semis: one with a 300-mile range and one with a 500- to 600-mile range. According to the company, the expected base prices for those tru