It’s been one year since the MAN eMobility Center was established at the company’s Munich plant. Then, it’s time for taking stock of the situation, in view of the ambitious electrification plans outlined by MAN Truck & Bus as for the truck sector, with the aim of starting e-truck small series production by the end of 2023 and hitting the road the following year.
MAN eMobility Center: what’s going on
Since last year, 20 prototypes of the upcoming heavy-duty e-truck have been rolled out of the production line, as showed by the official event held in Berlin at the end of May. Moreover, 1700 employees have so far been trained in the CO2-free technology of the future in Munich. According to MAN, by the end of 2022, 2,000 employees at the site will have completed around 10,000 hours of training in the use of the new high-voltage technologies.
“MAN is preparing for the future of electromobility and driving forward its transfor- mation into a provider of sustainable transport solutions for climate-friendly road freight. Our heavy-duty e-truck is scheduled to roll off the production line in Munich in early 2024. To this end, we are now training employees in high-voltage technology and making our production at our main plant in Munich more flexible”, said Alexander Vlaskamp, CEO of MAN Truck & Bus, on the one-year anniversary of the eMobility Center in Munich.
New production processes required for e-trucks
The production of electric trucks in large industrial quantities requires new production processes. Compared to the conventionally powered truck, the electric truck differs in terms of new components such as the electric battery and motor as well as high-voltage components and cables. In addition, conventional and battery-electric trucks will be produced on the same production line in the future to ensure the best possible utilization of the production facilities in the Bayern capital city.
Thorsten Campehl, plant manager in Munich, added: “We have to win people over to the change and support them in the process of these fundamental changes. A clear vision for the plant and the training and development of people are the key to achieving this”.
For the complex mixed production, the aim from the outset is to develop modular components, particularly for the chassis and wiring, that can be used by both drive concepts to enable either the conventional combustion engine and transmission to be installed or the battery modules and electric motor to be assembled on one assembly line. The innovative concept of the MAN eMobilty Center aims to develop the necessary processes for future series production directly during the manufacture of the first prototype vehicles and, at the same time, to train and qualify employees in the use of the new technologies.