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Japanese giants release hybrid products

12 December 2012

Mitsubishi and Toyota have made significant announcements on hybrid trucks.Mitsubishi will begin European production of 4-5 tonne capacity hybrid forklifts in 2011 (pictured), which is already available in Japan.

Mitsubishi and Toyota have made significant announcements on hybrid trucks.Mitsubishi will begin European production of 4-5 tonne capacity hybrid forklifts in 2011 (pictured), which is already available in Japan.

Toyota launched the Geneo- Hybrid 3.5 tonne counterbalance forklift in Japan in December.

The Mitsubishi truck features a powertrain design, comprising lithium-ion battery, diesel engine, two induction motors and an inverter. The manufacturer claims it achieves a 39 per cent increase in fuel efficiency over traditional IC engine trucks of similar capacity.

Toyota's Geneo-Hybrid comprises a 2.5-litre diesel engine, electric motor and nickel-hydride battery. The truck combines a Series Hybrid System for driving and a Parallel Hybrid System for load handling. For driving, the forklift truck's drive motor runs on electric energy from the engine-powered generator and battery. Load handling functions are powered by a hydraulic pump that receives mechanical energy from the diesel engine and generator, and electric energy from the battery. The nickel hydride battery is recharged by the engine's operation and does not require plug-in recharging.

Toyota's UK operations director Tony Wallis is excited by the possibilities hybrid technology brings to the UK.

Although he would not be drawn on when the Geneo-Hybrid will be brought to the UK or at what price point, he confirmed there has been interest from customers looking to reduce fleet running costs and emissions.
 
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