Chalie Pesti
Site Owner

Tesla and other car manufacturers have been taking the spotlight in automotive news as they begin to make the shift away from fossil fuels. While the concept of an electric car seems like something altogether new, the practice is actually much older than you might think. Almost 120 years old in fact.


Making their initial debut in mid-1830’s, the French-made electric trucks had an impressive continuous runtime of 17 hours with an active range of 70 km reaching a top speed of 18 kph. Not exactly impressive by today’s stands of speed in distance but for the early 1900’s it was comparable to petrol burning cars. By 1899, Belgian Engineer Camille Jenatzy designed an electric car that could reach a top speed of 105.88 kph!


It wasn’t until 1920 when Ford started building combustible engines that electric cars started to fall out of favor. Part of the problem was that the Ford models were about half the price of the standard electric vehicle. Additionally, battery technology and development began to slow to the point of stagnation. While some electric models managed to hang on until the 60’s and 70’s, they had already reached a point of obscurity, fading from the public eye.


Electric is Back and Better than Ever

Now, fortunately, electric cars are making a comeback and in a big way; from the Prius, an electric hybrid that made its debut in the late 1990’s to the Tesla which has been focusing on making solely electric vehicles. However, not content to rest on its laurels, auto manufacturers are pushing for bigger and stronger electric vehicle including delivery trucks that can fulfill one of the biggest needs of automobiles today, trucking.


The Nikola One, for example, equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell has an active range of 800 to 1,200 miles and is capable of upwards of  1,000 horsepower and 2,000 ft. lbs. of torque, nearly double that of any semi on the road today. Nikola isn’t the only manufacturer that is working on building electric freight trucks. Earlier this year, Mercedes-Benz announced a fully electric Urban Delivery truck that can carry a load of 12.8 tons and produces zero emissions.


The Importance of the Electric Trucks

The importance of electric delivery vehicles is two-fold. First and foremost there are the environmental benefits of replacing trucks and tractor trailers on the road with electric counterparts reducing not only carbon emissions but the amount of fossil fuels being consumed every day. The next benefit comes to the trucking fleets themselves. Simply cutting out fuel cost alone can make trucking companies significantly more profitable. Electric trucks are able to far exceed current EPA standards and with continued development of bigger and better batteries, tractor trailers will be able to go further and carry more weight as each new generation rolls out.