Commercial vehicle OEMs and component suppliers launched a range of new products at The Work Truck Show.

Work Truck Show 2023: New Truck and Component Launches

March 8, 2023
Commercial vehicle OEMs and component suppliers unveiled their latest product developments, including many with a focus on electromobility.

The Work Truck Show is considered the largest event focused on the work truck industry. Held March 8-10, 2023, the event takes over the Indiana Convention Center as part of what has now been termed Work Truck Week — encompassing The Work Truck Show and Green Truck Summit

Included as part of The Work Truck Show is a large exhibition space, educational sessions and a ride and drive providing attendees the opportunity to get a first-hand look at some of the latest commercial vehicle developments. 

Like many trade shows, The Work Truck Show provides OEMs and components manufacturers — including several hydraulic and motion control companies — the chance to show their newest product developments. 

Electrification and other sustainability related technologies are a key theme at this year's event, with several manufacturers introducing products in this area. This trend is growing in many industries, particularly on-road applications like trucking as its implementation is easier in certain vehicle types than other industries like heavy-duty construction equipment. 

As the trucking industry is an important segment for the fluid power industry, the Power & Motion team has compiled some of the key commercial vehicle and technology launches from the 2023 edition of The Work Truck Show. 

READ MORE: New Fluid Power and Electronic Solutions on Display at Work Truck Show 2023

For more Work Truck Show updates, visit FleetOwner — an Endeavor Business Media partner site

Mack Trucks Unveils MD Electric

At The Work Truck Show, Mack Trucks unveiled an electric version of its medium-duty truck the MD Electric. Since introducing the Mack MD in 2020  the company's first re-entry into the medium-duty market  it has experienced strong demand for the truck, gaining 5.5% market share by the end of 2022 said Rich Million, SVP Strategy and Business Development, during the company's press conference at the show.

The new MD Electric is available with two battery configurations, 150 kWh which provides up to a 140 mi. range or 240 kWh offering up to a 230 mi. range. Million said the medium-duty segment is the best application for electrification because the truck returns to base at night and often not running a full day, making it easy to charge as necessary and not have range concerns as can be the case with applications which have longer duty cycles.   

As with the diesel version, the MD Electric is available in Class 6 and 7 ratings. A regenerative braking system on the electric truck aids with the capture and reuse of energy that would otherwise be wasted, aiding the battery's range. 

Additional features include a standard CCS 1 connector for AC or DC charging, Meritor axles, a 3-phase permanent magnet synchronous motor and the ability to mount an electric PTO for running small devices off the truck. 

READ MORE about the MD Electric from Fleet Owner, an Endeavor Business Media partner site.

Ideanomics Introduces Class 3 Electric Work Truck

Ideanomics, a global company focused on commercialization and adoption of electric vehicles, and its subsidiary VIA Motors introduced the VTRUX Class 3 electric work truck. The truck features a stake body from Knapheide. 

The VTRUX work truck offers a flexible design to meet individual customer requirements. 

During the show the company also spoke about its various charging solutions and a collaboration with Google Cloud to provide a digital fleet management solution to customers. 

Watch our Engineering Academy session "An OEM's Perspective on Going Electric" for insights from Ideanomics' electric tractor subsidiary Solectrac to learn how hydraulics and other systems need to be adapted for these new vehicle architectures. 

Lightning eMotors Displays All-Electric ZEV4 Platform

Lightning eMotors, a provider of zero-emissions medium-duty commercial vehicles and electric vehicle technology, displayed a cutaway version of its all-electric, zero-emissions ZEV4 platform. The company is collaborating with GM (General Motors) on the ZEV4, aiming to become the company's first Specialty Vehicle Manufacturer to provide fully electric Class 3-6 commercial vehicles on its platforms.

According to Lightning eMotors, the ZEV4 platform accommodates school buses, shuttle buses, delivery trucks, work trucks and other applications, providing a range of potential uses. 

During the show the company is also providing ride and drive opportunities with its ZEV3 cargo van as well as updates on various vehicle electrification projects with which it is involved.

The company also introduced its guide to help fleets electrify, the Fleet Electrification Equation. Through this six-part guide, Lightning eMotors offers support to customers looking to add electric vehicles to their fleet. The six variables the company aids with include: 

  1. Selecting the right electric vehicles
  2. Implementing your charging infrastructure
  3. Taking advantage of software
  4. Service and support
  5. Financing and leasing
  6. Government incentives and funding

NTEA Releases Spring 2023 Commercial Vehicle Market Report

NTEA - the Association for the Work Truck Industry which organizes Work Truck Week released its Spring 2023 U.S. Commercial Vehicle Market Report in conjunction with the event. The report is compiled by NTEA, Commercial Truck Trader and S&P Global Mobility. 

The semi-annual report provides information on commercial vehicle trends and market data looking at the entire life cycle, from chassis sales to truck registration to used vehicle sales. Per NTEA, topics covered in the report include: 

  • Purchasing trends and forecasts by vehicle class
  • Fleet reactions to supply shortages and resulting effects on demand
  • How recent chassis shortages have impacted inventory levels
  • Proliferation of electric commercial vehicles
  • Average vehicle age shifts.

Information contained in the report can benefit hydraulic and other component suppliers to understand current market conditions which will help them to plan their own business efforts. The report can be downloaded for free from NTEA's website

Mullen Launches Two Electric Commercial Vehicles

Emerging electric vehicle OEM Mullen Automotive Inc. used The Work Truck Show to launch two of its electric commercial vehicles, a Class 1 cargo van and Class 3 low-cab forward truck. 

In its press release announcing the launch of the electric commercial vehicles, the company said it is looking forward to showing its vehicles to fleets who are ready to electrify.  

"We believe the commercial market represents an excellent opportunity for our fully electric small van and our medium-duty tilt cab," said John Schwegman, Mullen’s chief commercial officer, in the company's press release. 

Eaton Showcases Expanded Aftermarket Mobile Power Portfolio

Eaton has expanded its aftermarket portfolio of mobile power products which it showcased at The Work Truck Show. Included in the portfolio is the new electrified power takeoff (ePTO), FR2 twin-flow piston pump and 8-bolt adapter for Detroit DT12 transmissions. 

"The addition of these new products builds on our strategy to become a ‘one-stop’ shop for all our customers’ mobile power needs," said Tim Bauer, vice president, Aftermarket, Eaton’s Vehicle Group, North America, in the company's press release announcing the expanded product line. "We continue to add high-demand products to support our customers with a portfolio of parts for their mobile hydraulic applications." 

Eaton collaborated with its Bezares brand to develop the new ePTO for use in electric vehicles which can be integrated into the vehicle chassis battery system. The ePTO includes a customizable flange and standard input interface, enabling more flexibility and configurability than electric work trucks utilizing mobile power hydraulic systems stated Eaton in its press release. 

Eaton's FR2 twin-flow piston pump from the Bezares brand provides a smaller footprint for improved vehicle fit; it also features fewer rotating parts, helping to minimize wear. 

"The nodular cast iron used to produce the pump results in a stronger design and reduced wall section for lighter overall pump weight, and a smaller frame size to fit in those tighter areas," said Brad Gulick, commercial product manager, Eaton’s Vehicle Group North America. "Additionally, a nitrocarburization treatment reduces friction and provides improved corrosion resistance in extreme applications and climate."

IMT Exhibits Battery-Powered Hydraulic Telescopic Crane

Iowa Mold Tooling Co., Inc. (IMT), an Oshkosh Corp. company, is exhibiting its developments in the area of sustainability. The company is showing a battery-powered hydraulic telescopic crane and air compressor package aimed at helping work truck fleets reduce their emissions. 

The telescopic crane is powered by a Vanair EPEQ hydraulic power system and ELiMENT battery system, and can be used whether the vehicle is turned on or off. A concept version is on display at The Work Truck Show which features an IMT 7500 Series telescopic crane and EPEQ AIR45 compressor package outfitted on a Dominator I mechanics truck.

According to IMT, the crane and compressor package operates like a traditional PTO and pump setup, eliminating the need to re-engineer the hydraulic equipment in order to benefit from electrification. 

"We are leveraging our best technologies to bring sustainable, complete system packages to our customers as they work to future-proof their vehicles and service fleets in the face of changing industry regulations and market needs," said Amy Brownlee, Vice President and General Manager of IMT, in the company's press release announcing the crane and compressor package display at the event. "Through innovative design and the vetting and testing of new solutions, we are working to develop and manufacture products that deliver the unparalleled quality and reliable user experience IMT products are known for."

Workhorse Unveils Zero-Emissions Step Van

Workhorse Group Inc. unveiled its W56 step van, a new Class 5/6 delivery vehicle model from the company. The van is available in various work truck configurations and offers a range of 150 miles. 

Previous designs were leveraged from the Workhorse portfolio for the design of the new W56, many of which have proven their capabilities over several million miles on the road. The W56 features a fully-designed and purpose-built chassis platform built from the ground up to ensure it meets the needs of varied customer applications. 

"This vehicle incorporates the extensive on-road learnings of our legacy vehicles and improves upon those models with a new custom-designed chassis, demonstrating the caliber of trucks that we will produce for years to come. As we complete the final steps in our transition from a technology start-up to a pioneering commercial EV OEM, we look forward to starting production and making initial deliveries later this year," said Workhorse CEO Rick Dauch in the company's press release announcing the unveiling of the W56. 

About the Author

Sara Jensen | Technical Editor, Power & Motion

Sara Jensen is technical editor of Power & Motion, directing expanded coverage into the modern fluid power space, as well as mechatronic and smart technologies. She has over 15 years of publishing experience. Prior to Power & Motion she spent 11 years with a trade publication for engineers of heavy-duty equipment, the last 3 of which were as the editor and brand lead. Over the course of her time in the B2B industry, Sara has gained an extensive knowledge of various heavy-duty equipment industries — including construction, agriculture, mining and on-road trucks —along with the systems and market trends which impact them such as fluid power and electronic motion control technologies. 

You can follow Sara and Power & Motion via the following social media handles:

X (formerly Twitter): @TechnlgyEditor and @PowerMotionTech

LinkedIn: @SaraJensen and @Power&Motion

Facebook: @PowerMotionTech

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