February 17, 2023
EV Trucks are Here; PacLease is Ready
By: Joe Vatalaro, GM for PacLease Dallas and Grand Prairie
Over the past several years, there has been a lot of buzz about electric trucks and rightly so, they represent the future. Fifteen states have followed California’s lead and announced a memorandum of understanding that by 2050, any new medium or heavy-duty truck sold or leased in their state must be emission free. California itself has accelerated that to 2040. Those states hope to have 30% of trucks electrified by 2030.
With the growing emphasis on emission reduction and the emerging electric truck market, PacLease has invested in a robust charging infrastructure, certified technicians, and Kenworth and Peterbilt medium and heavy-duty electric truck models at our U.S. based PACCAR Leasing company stores. This spring, our electric rental trucks will make their debut in Texas.
Our first North Texas based lease customer took delivery of two Peterbilt Model 579 EV Day Cabs in February with additional deliveries to other customers in late Q1-2023 for medium-duty box trucks.
Behind the scenes, there was a lot of work to get ready to support these vehicles. The truck is only part of the equation: grants, infrastructure, chargers and qualified, trained support at our service facility are all part of PacLease’s investment in this new technology.
For those wanting to test the waters in electric trucks, there is no better way than leasing. You don’t have to go it alone – PacLease can help simplify the process and make the transition to electric easy by providing a full-service leasing option where PacLease takes care of everything, leaving you to focus your energy on your operations.
Get the Grant
Yes, electric trucks cost more. All new technology does. With available grant money the cost comes down significantly. Our partners at Kenworth and Peterbilt have dedicated staff to work and secure grants for customers interested in leasing or purchasing electric trucks. This helps drive down the lease rate. Coupled with the savings of using electricity versus diesel, electric trucks can be more affordable than you might think.
The first step in our “readiness” to support our new customers was understanding the new power requirements at our facilities in Texas. We had to enhance our electrical infrastructure to support the charging needs of our planned EV fleet expansion. This process can take time and success is driven by how well your defined needs are outlined early on in this process. It can take 6- to 18 months depending upon the location. That’s why it’s important to have a “domino” plan set up when the decision is made to go electric. Knocking that first domino over means you don’t have to wait to put your electric trucks to use.
While we have the charging stations available at our locations, PacLease will work with our customers to help them power up their own locations. We can work with you and your utility company to come up with the right power plan. And, through PACCAR Parts, we can provide charging stations that meet your needs – all of which can be built into your lease payment.
Technician Training and Tooling
Working on an electric truck is different than diesel. Since electricity is the power source, there are safety procedures involved to protect those around and working on the truck. Between our two stores in Dallas and Grand Prairie we have eight technicians already certified. When an electric truck comes in for maintenance (preventative maintenance will take about half the time versus a diesel since an oil change is not required), we will have a sectioned off location where only EV certified technicians are allowed.
While many of the tools themselves are the same – wrenches, sockets, etc., they are specialized in that handles are tipped with rubber (adding one more additional safeguard). PacLease has made the EV tooling investment at our Texas company stores. We also have all of the personal protection equipment, infrared heat sensors to check batteries and EV rated multimeters to test cables to ensure connectivity is as it should be.
Safety is always at the forefront of everything we do. Our PacLease technicians have had hours of EV training and are EV certified right from the OEM. PacLease has invested in all the required tooling and personal protection equipment to ensure our EV certified technicians are capable of decommissioning and repairing these electric vehicles safely.
As reliable as trucks are today, there is still a need for the occasional tow. Here, we’re prepared as well with a first responder guidebook. You can’t tow an electric vehicle like you can a diesel. Since the axles are hooked up to electric motors, there is a protocol to remove the axles when it comes to towing.
Getting Ready for the Future
Like with any new technology, there isn’t a switch to turn everything on all at once. Electric trucks are just coming on board and we’re gearing up as more trucks come into the pipeline. It’s an exciting time.
As we move forward, we expect a strong adoption of our lease programs. For customers who are looking to try electric vehicles, PacLease is the perfect option. PacLease has invested in the charging infrastructure, technician tooling, training, certification, and safety protocols to safely lease and service these vehicles. For those customers interested in installing their own chargers at their facility, PacLease can provide expertise and has partnered with companies who can streamline the process.
Bottom line: PacLease is here to charge the movement toward truck electrification. We’re ready in strategic areas and are currently solidifying plans in other locations. Take advantage of our expertise and get ready for your own ride into the future with clean, quiet and efficient electric trucks. It’s the beginning of the beginning of the transition to zero emissions.