European hybrid truck test fleet’s are hitting the streets to prove viability for the benefit of all. [xfloat=right]http://www.cleanmpg.com/photos/data/501/Mitsubishi_Canter_Eco-Hybrid.jpg[/xfloat]Wayne Gerdes - CleanMPG - Jan. 29, 2008 Stuttgart, Germany - Deutsche Post World Net is the first logistics company in Europe to trial a pair of Daimler/Mitsubishi hybrid trucks in its operations. The first two vehicles, a Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid and a Mitsubishi Fuso Canter Eco Hybrid will initially be run inside DHL Express’ operations in the UK and Mail transport in Germany. The Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid 8 TonUS GVWR is propelled by a compact 3.0L four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine developing 125 HP and 215 Lb-Ft of torque. The hybrid drivetrain includes a Li-Ion pack not much larger than that of a Prius at 1.9 kWh. A liquid cooled MGSet with output of 47 HP and 146 Lb-Ft. of torque is located between the clutch and the automatic transmission. The MGSet propels the truck on initial launch without the engine, assists the diesel engine at lower and medium engine speeds and once up to cruising speed, the vehicle runs exclusively on the smaller sized fuel efficient diesel engine alone. The Mitsubishi Canter Eco-hybrid is rated for the same GVWR as the Atego BlueTec while also using a 3.0L turbo-diesel producing 143 HP supported by the same MGSet and pack capacities. Even with the extra technology, the Canter Eco-hybrid still includes a gross payload of approximately 4 tons. DHL has been successfully using the Fuso Canter Eco Hybrid in Japan since July 2006. “With this initiative we are underlining our technological leadership in the sector and showing that we are serious about our environmental responsibilities,” said Christian Stiefelhagen, Member of the MAIL Divisional Board responsible for transport and mail centers within the Mail Division. Daimler and Deutsche Post anticipate that the two hybrid vehicles will use up to 20% less fuel than conventional diesel vehicles with the same % reduction in CO2 emissions. Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation (MFTBC) headquartered in Kawasaki, Japan, is one of the leading truck manufacturers in Asia. Daimler AG owns 85 percent of MFTBC; the remaining 15 percent is held by the Mitsubishi Group.