Drive to Zero Newsletter – December 2022

Dear Drive to Zero™ Pledge Partners and Allies:

Happy holidays!!! The Drive to ZeroTM program and campaign ends 2022 with strong momentum to achieve the transformational goals of the Global Memorandum of Understanding (Global MOU) on Zero-Emission Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles (ZE-MHDVs), which we proudly co-lead with the Government of the Netherlands. Twenty-seven countries on four continents are now signatories—including the United States of America and Canada in North America; Chile, Uruguay, and 4 Caribbean island nations in Latin America; a strong cohort of leading European countries; as well as New Zealand. In addition, more than 70 subnational governments and private sector innovators—including Siemens, Workhorse Group, and Milence (a joint venture of Europe’s biggest truck manufacturers)—are now endorsers of the world’s most ambitious global agreement to address commercial transport emissions.

While announcing our growing list of signatories and endorsers at COP27, Drive to Zero also unveiled the Multi-Country Action Plan, which provides an evaluation of current government policies and recommendations for national governments to meet the targets in the Global MOU. As a companion, we updated the Global MOU Policy Dashboard, which highlights and centralizes successful medium- and heavy-duty vehicle (MHDV) policy development taking place in leading regions around the world. COP27 audiences were also the first to test out our new ZETI Data Explorer. The online tool leverages the existing ZETI database to provide new insights into global commercial ZEV market status and trends (get an introduction to ZETI Data Explorer here).

Leading up to COP27, we organized a Zero-emission Truck Global Expo, where we brought 13 electric trucks serving regional freight, urban delivery, and refuse operations to the Global Clean Energy Action Forum in Pittsburgh, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy and the Clean Energy Ministerial. Government and industry stakeholders from many countries witnessed the reality and capability of technology, and understood that zero-emission technologies for trucks are here today.

We also co-hosted with the Netherlands a series of five educational “thematic deep dive” events for Global MOU signatories to connect countries with the world’s leading transport experts. Our informational and interactive sessions explored technology readiness,infrastructure, regulations, vehicle incentives, and innovative financing for zero-emission MHDVs. Some of the key findings from our tools and these deep dive events include:

  • There is a robust number of ZE-MHDV models (over 800) being offered by more than 150 manufacturers globally.
  • ZE-MHDVs are operationally ready to tackle most duty cycles today, and there are over 1.2 million zero-emission MHDVs in operation today, 60,000 of which are trucks.
  • There has been an exponential growth in ZE-MHDV production in Europe, the United States, and other key markets, but China still holds over 90% of the current ZE-MHDV market. Despite this growth, ZE-MHDV sales are still short of the needed targets to meet our global climate goals.
  • The vast majority of ZE-MHDV applications will achieve cost parity with diesel (on a TCO basis) by 2030, with incentives greatly accelerating this parity.
  • Nearly all MHDV segments can fully transition to zero-emission technologies in new fleets by 2040.
  • Although technology readiness is no longer a barrier, supply scalability, infrastructure, and financing are still important challenges to be tackled to enable faster ZE-MHDV deployment.
  • Strong policies, in particular regulations such as California’s Advanced Trucks Rule that establishes ZE-MHDV sales mandates, are essential to enable market success.
  • Potential choices in drive technology should not delay a commitment to adoption of zero-emission vehicles and supporting infrastructure. While battery charge range increases every year, neither battery-electric nor hydrogen fuel cell vehicles has emerged as the clear technology leader. Governments and businesses should not wait for hydrogen fuel cell technology to become operationally or financially viable to invest substantially in battery-electric vehicles or its charging infrastructure, which are expected to have much lower TCOs.
  • Coordinated government and industry action will accelerate technology commercialization, which is at the heart of the Drive to Zero theory of change and the Global MOU.

We thank our pledge and implementation partners for their collaboration and support in 2022. In 2023 we mark seven years until our first big Global MOU benchmark—at least 30% new zero-emission MHDV sales. Together, we know we can achieve our goal and transform the global transport sector for good.

— Cristiano Façanha, Global Director, CALSTART / Drive to Zero

News Updates

As the year draws to a close, momentum for clean transportation has continued to build, bringing great promise for the new year. Both governments and manufacturers have continued to invest heavily in the sector, including Mercedes-Benz Vans, which plans to invest more than 1 billion euros to create an EV plant in Poland. Volvo Trucks announced that it will be significantly broadening its range of zero-emission truck offerings, including cement mixers, refuse compactors, and cranes. Electric transport specialist Einride of Sweden recently collected $500 million in funding, including long-term funds for their expanding heavy-duty EV fleet. The bipartisan Truck Safety Improvement Act in the U.S. made progress when it gained the support of the influential Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association. If passed, the bill will allocate hundreds of millions of federal funds to be used to dramatically increase the number of available truck parking spaces, opening the door to the creation of facilities with truck charging capabilities. Increased investment in green transportation comes with the need for guidance with implementation, and the Electrification Coalition aided this effort by releasing a Local Government Playbook with recommendations for how smaller jurisdictions can use federal money to build out EV infrastructure. São Paulo is further investing in its commitment to a zero-emission future by following the lead of Bogotá on the continent and banning the procurement of all new diesel buses in the city.

The year’s end has also come with noteworthy product and partnership announcements. Hyundai will be entering the market in Southeast Asia for the first time by bringing its Xcient hydrogen fuel cell truck to Israel. General Motors’ BrightDrop announced that it will now make electric vans in Canada, with plans to produce 50,000 electric transporters annually by 2025 at its facility in Ontario. Tesla delivered its first completed electrified tractor trailer to PepsiCo at a “Semi Delivery Event” at Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada. TuSimple and Navistar are unfortunately terminating their deal to produce autonomous trucks in North America by 2024, although they left open the possibility of future collaboration. Forsee Power forged an agreement to supply the battery systems for heavy hydrogen commercial vehicles made by French fuel cell truck developer Hyliko.

The close of 2022 is also witnessing great technological innovation in the clean transportation arena. Scotland’s Munro Vehicles introduced a go-anywhere EV named the Mk_1 that it’s claiming to be “the world’s most capable all-electric 4×4” that can handle an off-road course for up to 16 hours on a single charge. Innovative EV developer Canoo delivered a 600 horsepower Light Tactical Vehicle to the U.S. Army for testing. Ryder announced a new drop-and-hook trailer system that will provide customers with access via an app to what the company describes as a “dynamic fleet of dry and refrigerated trailers.” Germany’s alternative drive specialist ABT e-Line GmbH will begin series development of hydrogen fuel cell vans using a new drive concept that was shown to increase driving range by several hundred kilometers. After an eventful 2022, we can hope the momentum for zero-emission transportation will carry over into the new year and bring us a cleaner, healthier, and happier world in 2023 and beyond.

Please share new information, potential partners, and innovative practices to achieve our Drive to Zero goals at Follow us on Twitter @TeamDrivetoZero. Please feel free to share this newsletter with others.

– Justin Slosky, Technical Writer, CALSTART

News Digest


 Fleet Deployments

  • Hyndai launches XCient fuel cell truck in Israel (LINK)
  • Mercedes-Benz Vans to invest $1b to build EV plant in Poland (LINK)
  • Canoo delivers Light Tactical Vehicle (LTV) to U.S. Army for testing (LINK)
  • Tesla finally delivers its first production Semi (LINK)

Manufacturers and Models: Trucks and Buses

  • Volvo Expands Heavy Duty Electric Truck Lineup (LINK)
  • BrightDrop begins manufacturing electric transporter vans in Canada (LINK)
  • ABT e-Line bringing fuel cell van into series development (LINK)
  • Ryder launches drop-and-hook service (LINK)
  • Navistar, TuSimple end autonomous tech partnership (LINK)

Manufacturers and Models: Port Equipment and Off-Road

  • Munro MK_1 Revealed As Hand-Built Electric Off-Roader With 375 HP (LINK)

Government Policies

  • São Paulo bans new diesel buses in city fleet (LINK)
  • The Electrification Coalition Releases Local Government Playbook for Federal EV Investments (LINK)

Financial Incentives

  • Einride collects half a billion in funding (LINK)
  • OOIDA supports Senate bill to fund more truck parking (LINK)

Fuels & Infrastructure

  • Hyliko to use Forsee Power batteries for their hydrogen trucks (LINK)