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Daimler North America CEO says future “does not include plug-in hybrids”

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Antonio Barron
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At a presentation in Long Beach, California, Daimler Trucks North America President and CEO Roger Nielsen on Wednesday laid out an electrification plan for Daimler's Freightliner brand, which makes medium- and heavy-duty trucks.

Freightliner announced two battery-electric vehicles last June: the heavy-duty eCascadia and the medium duty eM2.

The company previously said that it would build the trucks at a facility in North Carolina, but yesterday Nielsen said that an existing Freightliner factory in Portland, Oregon, would be redesigned to build the two electric-vehicle lines.

The company decided to change the manufacturing location in order to take advantage of the factory's proximity to California, which has stringent low-carbon fuel standard rules about to take effect.

In September, the state's Air Resources Board amended existing rules to require that lifecycle emissions for transportation fuels needs to drop by 20 percent by 2030, which will certainly drive up the price of diesel and gas in the state.

Now, vehicle manufacturers like Freightliner are betting that freight companies that move shipments frequently or exclusively through the Golden State will start to see a cost advantage in shifting their fleet from diesel to a low-carbon alternative.

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Antonio Barron
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