Transportation & MobilityNovember 3, 2023

Electrifying medium-duty trucks

US startup Harbinger is developing a new generation of affordable and driver-friendly battery-electric trucks, ideal for last-mile delivery services, and it’s using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to make it happen.
Avatar Rebecca Lambert

More people than ever buy goods online to be delivered directly to their homes. As a direct result, demand for last-mile delivery services continues to skyrocket, making medium-duty delivery trucks one of the most significant vehicle segments in terms of sales volume. Yet, according to the International Energy Agency, the share of medium-duty electric trucks sold worldwide remains low. One of the main reasons for this is cost. At the moment, there is still a significant cost gap between battery-electric trucks and diesel trucks. Harbinger, a commercial electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer in the US, hopes to change that.

The California-based startup is busy developing an innovative battery-electric chassis designed especially for Class 4 to Class 7 vehicles — everything from commercial walk-in delivery vans to motorhomes. Harbinger’s CEO and co-founder John Harris explained that this particular type of truck is ripe for electrification.

“They’re almost always fleet-operated, cover the same shorter-range distances, and run on a schedule that’s conducive to charging,” he said.

Harbinger is building its new medium-duty EV solution from the ground up using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud. To encourage widespread adoption, its trucks will be priced to compete with gas and diesel-powered trucks. The company also reimagined the chassis architecture to improve the driver experience, enhance performance and safety, and reduce overall running costs.

Building from scratch and handling all elements internally meant that Harbinger needed a rich development environment that could seamlessly integrate all disciplines and manage all the data related to every facet of the vehicle throughout its lifecycle. Thanks to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud, the company’s stakeholders and team members have access to the data they need at any time, on any device, from anywhere. 

“When you’re doing something as complicated as building a vehicle from the ground up, it’s essential that we have a very mature, stable and durable PLM platform, which supports us to handle everything from CAD and engineering bill of materials to virtual builds,” Harris said.

Today, Harbinger uses the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud to handle all its design and engineering processes. As it gears up to launch its first commercial EVs to market in 2024, the company is adding more features on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, including its digital manufacturing and planning capabilities.

Read the full story here to discover how Harbinger takes full advantage of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to manage all facets of its product development lifecycle and bring its medium-duty EV concept to market.

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