Hino Motors Develops Ultra-Low-Floor Walk-Through Light-Duty Electric Truck Designed for Usability in Logistics

New solution aimed at the future of last mile logistics. Scheduled for launch as Hino Dutro Z EV in early summer 2022

Hino Motors Ltd. (Hereafter “Hino” HQ: Hino, Tokyo, President & CEO: Yoshio Shimo) has developed an ultra-low-floor and front-wheel drive light-duty electric truck with a walk-through van style that provides both user-friendliness and carbon-free at advanced levels for the logistics field. This new truck, Hino’s solution for the future of last mile logistics, is scheduled to be introduced in the Japan market in early summer 2022 under the name Hino Dutro Z EV.

Given the background of current trends such as a decreasing workforce and the growth of e-commerce, the field of last mile logistics who deliver cargo and goods to the consumers is facing increasingly serious issues ranging from a shortage of drivers to the physical burden of cargo handling and other delivery work and an increasingly diverse array of goods. With greater increases in cargo volumes expected in the future, the need to address these issues is gaining greater urgency. Furthermore, the global trend toward achieving carbon neutrality has increased environmental management needs at logistics companies.

Hino has taken on logistics issues from the customer’s perspectives and developed a new ultra-low-floor front-wheel drive electric truck that addresses these concerns. Compared to conventional rear-wheel drive vehicles, it features an ultra-low-floor design that cuts ground clearance in half to approximately 400mm, offering dramatic improvements in cargo handling and accessibility. The walk-through structure also provides greater ease of use at delivery locations. For its cruising range, our goal is at least 100 kilometers, needed for delivery use.
Along with a walk-through van, there is also a cab chassis model that can be equipped with a cargo bed according to customer applications, offering configuration choices to best suit the way customers do business.
In addition, this model’s design is a size smaller than the current Hino Dutro, making it easier to drive in residential areas. Also, the model allows use with a standard driver’s license in Japan, which can help businesses secure driving personnel. And even with its compact body, it still provides the required cargo volume.

While this vehicle is mainly intended for home deliveries in urban areas, we anticipate utilization in a wide range of locations and time periods, such as inside stores, warehouses, airports, and other large-scale facilities, as well as during night time and early morning operations.

■Comment from Yoshio Shimo, President & CEO:
“The Hino Dutro Z EV is Hino’s first full-scale electric vehicle, and we take pride in presenting this useful electric truck as a solution for the future of last mile logistics. We focused on delivery logistics and designed it with usability thoroughly listening to the valuable opinions of our customers. The result is this ultra-low floor walk-through van EV design. I am confident that we have achieved a vehicle that will be chosen not only because it is electric, but because it is truly easy to use.”

Achieves usability in last mile logistics
– Ultra-low-floor design: Dramatically improves cargo handling and accessibility to reduce driver burden. Provides necessary cargo space
– Walk-through design: Achieves greater usability on the job by incorporating customer requests
– Can be driven with a standard license and provides the easy drive EVs are known for, helping businesses secure and retain drivers
– Equipped with safety technologies required for urban driving
– Also friendly to surrounding environment with zero emissions and high quietness

■New Specially Designed Chassis for Electric Vehicles
This newly-developed electric truck incorporates a new EV chassis that is optimized for last mile transportation. The conventional engine and transmission have been replaced with a compact motor mounted under the cab that drives the front wheels. The battery is mounted inside the frame under the cargo bed floor, and almost all other electric units are housed under the cab, achieving an ultra-low-floor design that was difficult to achieve with conventional rear-wheel-drive vehicles. Hino’s exclusive development has achieved the technologies required for mass production of electric vehicles, and we will apply these to future EV development projects.