Isuzu Australia Limited (IAL) introduced its inaugural battery electric truck at the 2023 Brisbane Truck Show.
Based on the all-new, next generation vehicle platform launched in Japan just weeks ago, the vehicle on display in Brisbane was a Japanese domestic specification product – the N Series EV.
The N Series EV is a key part of the all-new light and medium-duty truck model release by Isuzu Motors.
IAL chief of strategy Grant Cooper said that central to the preview and local adoption plans was meeting the varied needs of Australian customers and applications.
“The process of specifying and proving the Australian line-up will be a rigorous and comprehensive procedure and it’s something that we’ve been working intensively on for some time as we’ve sought to comprehensively understand how commercial ZEVs can meet our customers’ needs, in line with the available technology and operating parameters,” Cooper said.
“From a design and flexibility standpoint, our battery electric showcase model is representative of Isuzu’s new modular platform approach (Isuzu Modular Architecture and Component Standard or I-MACS), which underpins Isuzu’s carbon neutral objectives.”
As part of this landmark design philosophy, the I-MACS approach means more efficient components within the truck can be upgraded, replaced or interchanged as they become available over time.
“This allows for both internal combustion or diesel powertrains, and zero emission powertrains, from the same base truck platform,” Cooper said.
“It is important to note the cabin and battery configuration of the display model may not be representative of our first EV product for Australian customers. It does however demonstrate the design and flexibility of our new modular platform.”
The Isuzu N Series EV has a dual battery configuration, a combination well suited to Australian last mile delivery, and local council applications in a targeted GVM range of 4,500 to 7,500 kilograms.
As part of Isuzu’s global battery solution, the N Series EV is configured with individual 20kWh modules. Isuzu Australia is planning to offer a three to five battery pack solution, with a capacity of 60 to 100kWh.
The estimated range capability, although heavily dependent on the target application, should provide around 150 to 200 kilometres – perfect for back-to-base operations.
Power delivery is supplied through a centrally mounted 370Nm electric motor (generator), designed with both an ‘eco’ mode and a unique full power ‘boost’ mode.
The first-generation N Series EV also includes a fully customisable, up to 12-stage regenerative braking package, meaning the use of the brake pedal is almost negligible all while boosting battery charge.
The N Series EV will be made available with a number of charging solutions catering for AC single phase, AC three-phase and DC rapid charging. In Australia, local customer needs will be targeted, which will include the proposition of CCS2 DC fast charging capabilities.
“We’ve been fortunate to have held the position of Australian truck market leader for 34 years in a row,” he said.
“We’ve been able to do this by providing fit-for-purpose road transport tools and solutions, sold, serviced and supported by the industry’s best.
“We’ll be tailoring the Australian version of this platform to initially target last mile delivery, local government operations, in back to base usage with a target range of 150 to 200 kilometres.
“Isuzu Australia will be undertaking customer pilots with last mile logistics and local council fleets, commencing in the last quarter of this year,” Cooper concluded.
Start of sales for the first Isuzu N Series models in Australia is anticipated for late 2024, early 2025.