Econ Engineering has developed an electric gritter truck with demountable body options, enabling it to switch between fleet roles and provide year-round zero emission operations.
The Yorkshire firm’s new Electric Quick Change Body (E-QCB) system means that the 19-tonne Volvo FE Electric 4×2 chassis can be fitted with a gritter, tipper for highway maintenance or a cage tipper for refuse collection and recycling.
E-QCB uses hydraulic rams that can switch bodies in 15 minutes, controlled by a single operator.
The vehicle is the product of a project between Econ Engineering’s R&D team and product specialists from Volvo Trucks UK & Ireland, as well as the supplying dealer Crossroads Truck & Bus.
It has been specified with four batteries, and the FE Electric chassis offers a range of up to 155 m, as well as a recharging time of 2.3 hours with a 150 kW DC charger.
The battery can also be charged more quickly up to 80 per cent capacity, in just the same way as a smartphone, because the charger slows down towards the end of the process to protect the battery cells.
Jonathan Lupton, Managing Director at Econ Engineering, said: “We have spent a long time developing the new E-QCB, undertaking comprehensive redesigns and trialling it to ensure that we can offer a fully electric solution for our customers that can be used 52 weeks a year.
“The vehicle operates best in urban environments, where daily mileage is typically less than some longer distance motorway routes. As it is easy to switch body types with this model, customers can benefit from operating the vehicle all year-round.”