Mack Trucks introduces mobile off-grid charging system

Mack Trucks revealed it built a mobile off-grid charging system that will be integrated into the body of a Mack MD electric truck. The company said this mobile Mack MD Electric charging unit can be used for a limited time by customers who want to test the technology and by dealers when facilitating electric vehicle demos. Mack made the announcement at the American Trucking Associations Technology and Maintenance Council Annual Meeting and Transportation Technology Exhibition, March 4-7, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

“This system will allow the customer or dealer to charge trucks – whether it’s a demo unit or a multi-unit ride-and-drive event at the dealer – without having charging infrastructure readily available at their site,” Ryan Saba, energy solutions manager for Mack Trucks, said. “Mack hopes that this option will help customers more easily experience the benefits of e-mobility and a more sustainable transportation option.”

The off-grid charging system will consist of a generator powered by renewable propane and a 120kW charger. The system will be mounted on the back of the MD Electric truck transporting it. Mack said it currently does not have plans to make the truck-charger configuration commercially available in its energy solutions portfolio but can support customers interested in purchasing the truck charger combo through supplier relationships. 

Mack said the MD Electric can be configured to be a Class 6 or Class 7 vehicle. It features a three-phase Permanent Magnet Synchronous 260 hp motor powered by Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC) Oxide lithium-ion batteries, rated at 240kWh and good for an estimated range of up to 230 miles. The MD Electric is the second electric vehicle introduced by Mack Trucks to the industry; the first was the Mack LR Electric, which went into production in December 2021.

The Mack LR Electric is a Class 8 refuse model with a GVWR of 66,000 pounds. The next generation Mack LR Electric offers 42% more energy and a standard 376kWh total battery capacity for an increased range between charges, Mack said. Twin electric motors with 448 continuous horsepower and a 4,051 lb.-ft. of peak torque output from zero rpm power the vehicle.

Both trucks proudly display a copper-colored Bulldog which the company said makes them easily identifiable as a Mack and denotes the electric drivetrains. 

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