Mercedes-Benz announced that it will begin series production of its eActros electric truck at its plant in Wörth am Rhein, Germany, next year,
Production of the battery-electric eActros for heavy-duty distribution haulage will take place alongside the existing manufacturing of trucks with combustion engines. The eEconic truck, designed specifically for municipal use, is based on the Mercedes-Benz eActros and is intended to follow it into series production in 2022.
“I’m delighted that we will be building the first generation of the Mercedes-Benz eActros here at Wörth,” said Matthias Jurytko, head of the Mercedes-Benz Wörth plant. “The start of series production next year is an important milestone for the plant and the region. We are expanding the portfolio of the Wörth plant and taking another positive step in the direction of CO2-neutral transport.”
Electromobility will also open up new opportunities for employees in the production process, as new a range of tasks and job profiles will emerge as a result, Jurytko said. “At the site, preparations are in full swing to get our production ready for the demands associated with electric drive systems,” he said. “For example, we are currently training our future specialists in the field of high-voltage systems – a fundamental area of expertise as far as the assembly of automotive batteries and the construction of electric trucks is concerned.”
Flexible truck production
The electric truck models are set to be assembled alongside trucks with conventional drives in a flexible process. The construction of the different vehicle types should in principle be integrated as far as possible, with the basic vehicle structure being built on one line regardless of whether it will be getting a conventional combustion engine or an electric powertrain. Certain modifications will be made to the production process to accommodate the different types of vehicle. The installation of various non-conventional drive components will take place in a separate process, as will the assembly of the electric powertrain for the eActros.
The centerpiece of the eActros manufacturing process is going to be the production hall in building 75 of the Wörth plant. For around a year, work has been going on to convert the building and prepare it for the new production processes. This includes setting up a new assembly line on which the construction of all the electrical architecture of the eActros, in particular the high-voltage components, will take place, as will its initial operation. Subsequently, the vehicles will be fed back into the regular production process for finishing and final inspection.
The largest truck assembly plant of Mercedes-Benz Trucks, Wörth am Rhein was founded in 1963 and produces the Mercedes-Benz Arocs, Atego and Actros trucks, as well as the Econic, Unimog and Zetros are also built here. Up to 470 trucks customized according to customer requirements leave Wörth every day.