Daimler Truck Group today (2nd July 2012) announced the launch of a factory-built EcoHybrid Fuso Canter.

Fuso Canter

Designed at Daimler’s Global Hybrid Centre in Japan, the new EcoHybrid is true to the manufacturer’s “Shaping Future Transportation” initiative, which seeks to make the zero-emission commercial vehicles of tomorrow, a reality today.

The new EcoHybrid Fuso Canter has a 7.5-tonne gross vehicle weight and is ideally suited to short radius city centre deliveries. It has demonstrated fuel savings of up to 23 per cent on trial, as well as correspondingly lower CO2 emissions.

The product of many thousands of hours of research and development, the EcoHybrid features a Euro V-compliant 110 kW (150 PS) diesel engine which operates in parallel with a state-of-the-art, slimline, 40 kW electric motor installed between the  clutch and Duonic two pedal automated manual transmission.

The new model takes Hybrid technology to another level. Lithium-ion batteries backed by a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty ensure an affordable ‘green’ solution, while service costs are comparable to a standard, diesel-engined Canter, demonstrated by identical Repair & Maintenance contract prices. Efficiency is boosted by a recuperation system which acts as a re-charging generator, transforming braking and deceleration energy back into useable electricity.

In 2008 Fuso entered a three-year, London-based Hybrid trial, the largest in Europe, with partners Amey, DHL, Hill Hire, Royal Mail, Ringway, Scottish & Southern, Tesco and TNT. These trial vehicles, based on the previous generation Canter (TD model), were fitted with a variety of body types and daily workloads varied, but the operators reported fuel savings of up to 16 per cent.

Sam Whittaker, Director of Truck Sales & Marketing at Mercedes-Benz UK, said: “The London trial was a great success for Fuso. As a result of intensive vehicle monitoring we learnt a great deal not only about the technology, but also about our customers’ needs and expectations. The trial demonstrated, in real-life, everyday conditions, the fuel savings and environmental improvements that can be achieved.”

Sam continued: “We’re delighted that as a direct result of the work which was done here in the UK, and of the data generated by our valued customers, we’re now able to offer a factory-built EcoHybrid Fuso Canter at an affordable and competitive price.”

The EcoHybrid, as all Fuso Canter models, will be sold and supported by the Mercedes-Benz Commercial Vehicle dealer network. The compact, manoeuvrable and bodybuilder-friendly chassis cab offers an impressive and class leading payload, even with the EcoHybrid technology on-board.

Backed by a three year, all encompassing, unlimited mileage warranty, and offering the same driving characteristics and levels of comfort as a regular Canter, the EcoHybrid is also equipped with the latest DUONIC transmission, the world’s first dual-clutch automatic gearbox for light trucks, and a fuel-saving Engine-Start-Stop system.

The Portuguese Tramagal factory supplies Fuso Canters to more than 30 countries throughout Europe. Production of the Fuso Canter in Japan extends back as far as 1963 and it is now in its seventh generation.