California Air Resources Board (CARB) and CALSTART’s
First Zero-Emission Truck Showcase + Ride and Drive
Highlights Plethora of Commercial Zero-Emission
and Charging Options on the Market Today 

CARB Chair Liane Randolph waving the starter flag to begin the zero-emission truck convoy. Photo by Brandon Bashir.

A convoy of medium- and heavy-duty zero-emission trucks (ZETs) silently (except for honks of enthusiasm) kicked off CARB and CALSTART’s Zero-Emission Truck Showcase + Ride and Drive on the grounds of the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, a raceway typically roaring with internal combustion engines. Nearly 500 fleet owners and operators, policy makers, and industry professionals came out to test drive a wide range of ZETs available for purchase and deployment. While attendees took the latest ZET technologies for a spin, smog blanketing the San Gabriel Mountains and the freeways, warehouses, and neighborhoods of the Inland Empire served as a stark reminder of the escalating need to improve California’s air quality. As CARB Chair Liane Randolph, EPA Region 9 Administrator Martha Guzman, and NHTSA Administrator Steven Cliff all stressed in their opening remarks, the vehicles at the event demonstrated a safe and clean path forward to combat environmental injustice and climate change while preserving the vital role commercial trucks have in supporting the U.S. economy.  

Welcome speech from Kevin Walkowicz, senior director of CALSTART’s Truck initiative. Photo by Brandon Bashir.

Throughout the event, attendees completed 729 ride and drives behind the wheel of 23 different vehicles, ranging from medium-duty delivery vans to heavy-duty tractors and refuse trucks. The vast majority of these vehicles are eligible for funding under California’s Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Program (HVIP).  “We urgently need cleaner medium and heavy-duty vehicles on the road, especially in disadvantaged communities that are overburdened by truck pollution. Today’s event demonstrates that industry is ready to meet this challenge – the vehicles here are available for purchase today,” said Kevin Walkowicz, senior director of CALSTART’s Truck initiative. “When fleet managers and drivers experience these vehicles firsthand, they are impressed. When they understand the available incentives and totalcost-of-ownership cost savings, they are convinced.”

Participants could test drive both on-road and off-road commercially available vehicles. Photos by Brandon Bashir.

Attendees at the ‘How to Pick Your Trucks’ training session. Photo by Brandon Bashir.

The day’s five in-person training sessions on technology, financing, incentives, and charging and refueling infrastructure saw fleet owners and operators engage with CALSTART, CARB, and experts from industry, government, and nonprofit organizations on best practices and the assistance available to help electrify their fleets. Topics that sparked conversations during Q&A included timelines for vehicle delivery and infrastructure construction and commissioning, maintenance savings, technician training, weight considerations, low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) credits, and HVIP funding, which still has $35 million in incentive vouchers available for fleets. 

“California is a first-mover in establishing the market for medium- and heavy-duty zero-emission vehicles,” said Jessie Lund, lead project manager of CALSTART’s Truck initiative. “The state is making a historic investment in clean air and emissions reductions through accessible incentives and rebates that help fleets make the transition. It’s a model that has not only been successful here but is paving the way for the deployment of zero-emission technology across the nation.” 

Partner booths answering questions for attendees in the Charging and Infrastructure Zone. Photo by Brandon Bashir.

Attendees also clustered around the 13 expo tables in the Charging and Infrastructure Zone, engaging in conversations with representatives from CALSTART’s HVIP and Energy Infrastructure Incentives for Zero-Emission (EnergIIZE) Commercial Vehicles teams and event partners. Across from the Charging and Infrastructure Zone, the 17 trucks parked on display for the showcase provided ample space for fleet managers to get under the hood of these vehicles and talk model availability, vehicle specs, financing options, and holistic solutions with manufacturers. 

Below is the full list of partners and participants at the Zero-Emission Truck Showcase + Ride and Drive: 

Zero-Emission Truck Showcase Participants: 

  • AEM 28′ Refrigerated Trailer (with Solar Tech eTRU)
  • BYD 6F
  • Ford E-Transit
  • Freightliner eCascadia (courtesy of Penske)
  • GreenPower Motor Company EV Star Cargo
  • Hyundai Xcient Fuel Cell
  • Hyundai Xcient Box Truck
  • International/Morgan Corp EV Dry Freight Concept
  • Lion Electric/Morgan Corp EV Refrigeration Concept
  • Phoenix Motorcars ZEUS 500
  • Volvo VNRE (courtesy of TEC Equipment)
  • Workhorse W750
  • Xos MDXT 

Zero-Emission Truck Ride and Drive Participants:

  • Autocar Terminal Tractor (ACTT)
  • Brightdrop Zevo 600
  • Curbtender/XL Fleet Quantum Refuse Truck
  • Ford eTransit (courtesy of Velocity)
  • Freightliner eM2 (courtesy of Velocity)
  • GreenPower Motor Company EV Star Cargo (courtesy of Zeem)
  • GreenPower Motor Company EV Star CC
  • Hexagon Purus eM2
  • Hyundai Xcient Fuel Cell
  • Hyzon Class 8
  • International eMV
  • Kenworth K270E
  • Kenworth T680E
  • Lightening Transit 350 Cargo Van
  • Lion Electric Lion6
  • Mack LR Electric (courtesy of TEC Equipment)

Charging + Infrastructure Zone Participants:

  • AMPLY Power
  • ChargePoint
  • Electric Vehicle Choice
  • Edison Energy
  • EnergIIZE
  • FreeWire
  • HVIP
  • Proterra
  • Southern California Edison
  • SemaConnect
  • WattEV
  • WAVE (Wireless Advanced Vehicle Charging) 

The success of and interest in this ZET showcase further emphasizes that the ZET market is poised for significant growth – both in the state and across the country. Tune in to CALSTART’s monthly Clean Commercial Transportation Update (CCTU) on June 28 at 11am Pacific for coverage of the event, with hosts Alycia Gilde and Bill Van Amburg sharing insights from attendees on the viability of these vehicles and their importance to the future of California’s climate and communities.