From humble beginnings in Melbourne in 2012, SEA Electric is now an international success story with both Mack and Hino recently unveiling plans to incorporate its proprietary power system in key models
SEA Electric is motoring towards the 2023 Brisbane Truck Show with a head of steam after signing two landmark deals to supply its proprietary SEA-Drive battery-electric power system to Mack Trucks and Hino.
Founded in Australia in 2012 and now headquartered in the United States, the company is recognised as a market leader in the electrification of commercial vehicles globally, deploying products in eight countries to date, including the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Indonesia, India and South Africa.
In 2020 SEA partnered with Hino Trucks US for ‘Project Z’, Hino’s path towards zero-emissions for medium-duty and heavy-duty trucks; and, in March 2021, launched two SEA-badged vehicles in Australia, the SEA 300 EV and the SEA 500 EV, which are built on Hino chassis and sold through a network of nationwide dealerships.
In the next step in its mission to eliminate emissions from the transport sector, the company has become a Tier 1 partner to Mack Trucks in the US for the supply of its power system.
The five-year agreement will focus on the next generation of Mack’s popular MD range, which will see deliveries of the fully electrified models to Mack dealers across North America.
Specifically, the Class 6 and 7 Mack MD6 and MD7 models will be equipped with the SEA-Drive 120 and 180 power systems.
“This is a proud day for SEA Electric, and the culmination of over a decade of leading research and development that has proven the SEA-Drive power system around the world,” says Tony Fairweather, SEA founder and CEO.
“In testing, the SEA-Drive equipped Mack MD6 successfully completed a gruelling durability assessment, equivalent to more than 500,000 miles on one of the toughest and most challenging tracks.
“We are proud to partner with a brand as iconic as Mack Trucks to help them achieve market leadership in the Class 6 and 7 zero-emissions segment.
“In the future, this agreement has the potential to see significant scale, which is very exciting for the industry as it transitions to a sustainable future.”
For Mack Trucks, the partnership signals an important step forward in the company’s long-term sustainability goals, says Martin Weissburg, Global President of Mack Trucks.
“Mack established itself as an electrification leader with the heavy-duty Mack LR Electric refuse vehicle, and we’re excited to add the MD Electric to our zero-tailpipe emissions line-up,” he adds.
“This is another important step in our efforts to drive decarbonisation and a more sustainable future, and we plan to continue investing in technologies that help improve the environment and society.”
Available in 4×2 configurations, the Mack MD Electric will be produced at Roanoke Valley Operations (RVO) in Roanoke Valley, Virginia, where Mack began production of the Mack MD Series in 2020.
The MD Electric’s three-phase permanent magnet synchronous motor and all on-board accessories are powered by nickel manganese cobalt (NMC) oxide lithium-ion batteries, either in a 150kWh or 240kWH configuration.
The MD Electric can be charged through AC or DC charging units, with its regenerative braking system helping recapture energy from the multiple stops the vehicle makes each day.
“Building on the success of the diesel-powered Mack MD Series, the Mack MD Electric will help our customers meet their sustainability goals without sacrificing the durability, reliability and total cost of ownership for which Mack is known,” Weissburg adds.
On top of the Mack partnership, Sea Electric has also revealed a significant expansion of its existing business relationship with Hino Trucks.
The announcement paves the way for its SEA-Drive power-system to be fitted to Hino’s M and L Series.
“Hino Trucks’ products are renowned the world over for their dependability and reliability, and we are proud to be a part of the next chapter of that story,” Fairweather says.
For Hino Trucks, the announcement expands its range in a growing market.
Unveiled at Work Truck Week, held in Indianapolis March 7-10, Hino’s Class 5 M5e cab-over and Class 6 L6e conventional models will come equipped with battery capacities of 138kwH and 220kwH respectively.
Hino Trucks’ President Glenn Ellis says the “strategic collaboration” with SEA is part of its plan to provide powertrain options to meet the needs for customers and markets throughout the United States.
“Starting in 2024, Advanced Clean Truck (ACT) mandates are starting to kick off in California which are growing the demand for electric vehicles (EV), and many of our customers want to add EV’s to evaluate operational capabilities,” he notes.
Location: Stand 57, Hall 1
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