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Kawasaki, Japan – While automotive design is undoubtedly a well-known aspect of passenger car production and sales, its significance for commercial vehicles has long been overlooked. The product development process at Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC/Mitsubishi Fuso), one of Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers, has been quietly shifting industry conventions by incorporating a heavy emphasis on design. Product design for the FUSO brand reaches beyond the pursuit of appearances, marrying form and function to deliver advanced comfort and safety while minimizing environmental impact. At the Design Essentials event held on April 14 at its Kawasaki headquarters, Mitsubishi Fuso showcased its pursuit of a clear identity, simplification, and perceived quality through each stage of its design process for products that serve society’s needs, today and beyond. Through demonstrations of its physical design, production design, and advanced design, visitors were invited to discover why, in this age of economy, Mitsubishi Fuso remains committed to perfecting the art of the commercial vehicle.

The best of both worlds
Design at Mitsubishi Fuso is situated within a global Daimler network, which allows the team in Kawasaki to mutually exchange ideas with more than 700 counterparts worldwide. Representing this exchange are Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer of Daimler AG, Benoit Tallec, the Head of Product Design at MFTBC and Daimler Trucks Asia, and an international, multi-generational team. The cross-border setup has enabled design at Mitsubishi Fuso to integrate global expertise and world-leading technology while safeguarding the uniqueness of FUSO trucks and buses within the Daimler Trucks lineup. The result is a product range that is at once a continuation of FUSO’s heritage as a stalwart of Japanese “monozukuri,” while also an interpretation of the forward-looking forms and precision foundational to Daimler vehicles.

Guiding principles essential to FUSO design
In order to keep FUSO’s heritage intact while employing future-forward approaches to design, Mitsubishi Fuso designers have operated with three distinct principles as their driving force.

A clear identity
The first of these is establishing a clear identity and harmonious connection among all FUSO products. Here, “clear” indicates both a purity and cleanliness in form, as well as design that is immediately recognizable. Mitsubishi Fuso unifies the look of the front face through its entire family of trucks and buses, referring to the same motifs and design vocabulary across the range. At the same time, traits from iconic FUSO vehicles of the past fully resonate in the current family look. Each distinct model, however, accentuates a different aspect of this shared vocabulary, leading to individuality within uniformity. The face of the Aero Queen coach bus, for instance, contains plenty of elements that correspond to the face of the Canter, but also emotes a stronger sense of elegance and calm compared to its more agile sibling. Facial continuity is therefore maintained throughout the line, while different characteristics are emphasized in each model according to their purpose and use case.

Simplification
Another principle driving design decisions at Mitsubishi Fuso is the search for simplification. The pursuit of the simple means more than omitting the superfluous; it means FUSO designers are constantly problem solving to address as many needs as possible in one fell swoop. Purely decorative gestures are eschewed for the simplest solutions that can marry form and function, with neither preceding the other. The roundness of a lamp, or the curvature on the side of the cab – all aspects of the vehicle are decided in a way that fulfills a variety of requirements at once. For example, production efficiency, aerodynamics, and structural balance are among the many considerations contributing to the integration of components seen on the latest Canter face.

Perceived quality
First impressions count, and designers at Mitsubishi Fuso step up to the challenge of making them perfect. The strengths and functions of a vehicle, as well as the care taken to produce it, should be immediately visible when it comes to a FUSO product. Work at the Kawasaki Design Center also reflects the awareness that trucks and buses are a constant presence on roads everywhere. This means that in the eyes of the designer, each product is a brand ambassador, not only for FUSO, but for customers as well. The aesthetic considerations invested in FUSO vehicles are intended to live up to and reflect the pride that drivers and logistics providers take in their role in the world.

The three principles are applied rigorously through every step of design process, from physical modeling, production design, and even in the ideation of concept vehicles in advanced design work. Presentations at the Design Essentials event delved further into how they are fully integrated into these key contribution areas.

The physical design process at Mitsubishi Fuso relies upon traditional Japanese craftsmanship in clay modeling, as well as more recent technology such as data modeling, 3D printing, and NC (numerically controlled) machine milling. Once given a drawing from their colleagues, clay modelers will begin shaping their real-world interpretation of the paper concept. Clay modeling for FUSO products is built on a trial-and-error process with active dialogue between the designer and modeler, repeated until the designer and modeler arrive at a shared ideal. The transition from drawing to clay is not completed in one step. The design team also implements even more minute adjustments to perfect the work done by hand, to ensure production-ready quality. The result of their physical modeling is translated into data through a scanning device in preparation for digital fine-tuning. The latest technologies in 3D printing and NC machine milling come into play when higher levels of precision are required for more intricately designed sections such as the grill or the FUSO three-diamond logo.

Behind this time-consuming yet all-important facet of design work at Mitsubishi Fuso is not only the pursuit of quality, but the correct expression of character. The criteria for a design is seldom verbalized outside of technical specifications, but there is always a balance that modelers and designers have learned to recognize in a satisfactory piece of work. Clay modelers at Mitsubishi Fuso have always strived to achieve purity in proportion, as well as “FUSO-ness” in their work. FUSO vehicles can be easily identified by their clean and fluid surfaces, standing in contrast to the rugged and geometric lines commonly seen in the world of commercial vehicles. Balanced proportions, gentleness, and elegance are major criteria that clay modelers try to achieve in their work, in order to imbue FUSO trucks with a sense of familiarity and naturalness when placed in an urban landscape.

Supporting this search for the ideal form is a strong foundation of collective experience and historical knowledge of the FUSO brand. At Mitsubishi Fuso, some clay modelers have developed their skills through careers in the field spanning over 30 years. These experts working at Kawasaki have been in their positions for several decades, gaining unparalleled knowledge of the process and an innate sense for what FUSO vehicles stand for. Mitsubishi Fuso relies on these veterans as the work of the clay modeler is something that cannot be easily taught, nor something that can be easily managed by sheer talent.

Clay modelers at Mitsubishi Fuso are also unique in their knowledge of, and involvement in multiple aspects of the design process. Each modeler has skills beyond shaping clay, including metal working and vehicle painting, which then feed back into the clay modeling process. For example, a clay modeler can apply their skills in metal working to build their own carving tools. Additionally, one individual is tasked not only with clay modeling, but also the other stages of the physical design process such as hard modeling and data creation. The depth and scope of the expertise held by the FUSO clay modelers further supports their uniqueness as true “takumi,” in contrast to the hyper-efficient specialization that is the trend in manufacturing.

FUSO modelers’ attention to detail and commitment to expressing the brand’s essence in their designs differentiates their work from the digital-only design processes of many competitors. The attention of these master craftsmen, or “takumi,” to even the smallest of details reflects Mitsubishi Fuso’s understanding that commercial vehicle design in not simply about aesthetic value, but maximizing the value of trucks and buses for customers. Compared to passenger cars, trucks and buses have more rigid parameters they must clear in order to be considered for sale, such as load capacity, dimensions, and wheel base. There is a comparatively limited space in which the design team can exercise its abilities. But taken another way, the differentiation Mitsubishi Fuso can offer within this limited space makes all the difference. Each decision taken by the clay modelers reflects their commitment to perceived quality and the optimization of every aspect of the commercial vehicle.

Production Design
Mitsubishi Fuso design is always about form and function, pleasing eye and mind. It is about beauty, ease and harmony (Wa), as well as the creation of driving comfort, safety, efficiency and economy. The latest model of the light-duty truck Canter, which was showcased at this event, features a cab design that was renewed for the first time in 10 years with the Black Belt design motif. With this new motif, FUSO designers breathed new life into the Canter’s speedy and light character positioning within the product range. Touches of modernity and solidity were part of this reinterpretation, through which the Canter has evolved into a sophisticated leading face of the current truck scene.

The value of the Black Belt design motif is not only limited to exterior design, but also extends its benefits to the vehicle assembly process to improve the superiority of FUSO products. With the adoption of the Black Belt design motif in the Canter, the structure of the front grill now enables greater efficiency in the vehicle assembly process while creating a sleeker, unified look.

This aspect of Production Design, and the implementation of the Black Belt motif, also applies to the common LED headlight. The common headlight design, which is used in the Canter, Aero Ace/Queen and Rosa, supports a more efficient development process for each vehicle. In addition, by introducing the common headlamp, it became possible to reduce the number of parts from three to two, comprising of only the lamp and the garnish. The integrated headlight design therefore contributes not only to a more efficient development of the entire vehicle, but also to the reduction of total development costs.

In addition, the Black Belt design motif, which was also introduced with the model year 2019 coach bus “Aero Queen/Ace” and model year 2018 microbus “Rosa,” provides FUSO products with an immediately recognizable identity, bolstering the brand’s overall visibility within the commercial vehicles industry. Even with changes to exterior coloring or additions of customer liveries, the FUSO brand name and its unique design elements remain clearly recognizable. The importance of Production Design is therefore two-fold: it supports a common family appearance within the FUSO product lineup, but it also means significant time and cost benefits for Mitsubishi Fuso as well as customers.

Production Design also enhances the quality of all FUSO products by taking advantage of 3D surface data in the design development process for the front mask. By leveraging the technology of 3D surface modeling, FUSO designers can easily explore how vehicles will appear with fewer creases and folds, how the wind noise will be impacted, and even how assembly on the factory line will be ordered. The design team will always seek to connect all of these elements smoothly to produce a product with unified intention and superior aerodynamics. This is another way in which the simplification principle manifests in the design process at Mitsubishi Fuso; 3D surface modeling achieves several optimization goals at once. It contributes not only to beautiful exteriors, but also to better aerodynamics, efficient assembly orders, as well as the strength and durability of parts.

Color, materials and finish also play an important role in Production Design at Mitsubishi Fuso. These aspects of vehicle interior design directly impact the aesthetic appeal of the final product, but also enhance a vehicle’s functionality for drivers. The interior of the “Rosa” exhibited at the Design Essentials event provides a sophisticated and luxurious feeling through choice of color and material. At the same time, designers made sure to distinguish the texture selection for various switches within the cockpit, boosting the intuitive usability of vehicle. Production Design therefore reaches beyond appearance for appearance’s sake, but aims to achieve better comfort for the driver, and better efficiency, both in on the manufacturing line and in on-road use.

Physical Design

The physical design process at Mitsubishi Fuso relies upon traditional Japanese craftsmanship in clay modeling, as well as more recent technology such as data modeling, 3D printing, and NC (numerically controlled) machine milling. Once given a drawing from their colleagues, clay modelers will begin shaping their real-world interpretation of the paper concept. Clay modeling for FUSO products is built on a trial-and-error process with active dialogue between the designer and modeler, repeated until the designer and modeler arrive at a shared ideal. The transition from drawing to clay is not completed in one step. The design team also implements even more minute adjustments to perfect the work done by hand, to ensure production-ready quality. The result of their physical modeling is translated into data through a scanning device in preparation for digital fine-tuning. The latest technologies in 3D printing and NC machine milling come into play when higher levels of precision are required for more intricately designed sections such as the grill or the FUSO three-diamond logo.

Behind this time-consuming yet all-important facet of design work at Mitsubishi Fuso is not only the pursuit of quality, but the correct expression of character. The criteria for a design is seldom verbalized outside of technical specifications, but there is always a balance that modelers and designers have learned to recognize in a satisfactory piece of work. Clay modelers at Mitsubishi Fuso have always strived to achieve purity in proportion, as well as “FUSO-ness” in their work. FUSO vehicles can be easily identified by their clean and fluid surfaces, standing in contrast to the rugged and geometric lines commonly seen in the world of commercial vehicles. Balanced proportions, gentleness, and elegance are major criteria that clay modelers try to achieve in their work, in order to imbue FUSO trucks with a sense of familiarity and naturalness when placed in an urban landscape.

Supporting this search for the ideal form is a strong foundation of collective experience and historical knowledge of the FUSO brand. At Mitsubishi Fuso, some clay modelers have developed their skills through careers in the field spanning over 30 years. These experts working at Kawasaki have been in their positions for several decades, gaining unparalleled knowledge of the process and an innate sense for what FUSO vehicles stand for. Mitsubishi Fuso relies on these veterans as the work of the clay modeler is something that cannot be easily taught, nor something that can be easily managed by sheer talent.

Clay modelers at Mitsubishi Fuso are also unique in their knowledge of, and involvement in multiple aspects of the design process. Each modeler has skills beyond shaping clay, including metal working and vehicle painting, which then feed back into the clay modeling process. For example, a clay modeler can apply their skills in metal working to build their own carving tools. Additionally, one individual is tasked not only with clay modeling, but also the other stages of the physical design process such as hard modeling and data creation. The depth and scope of the expertise held by the FUSO clay modelers further supports their uniqueness as true “takumi,” in contrast to the hyper-efficient specialization that is the trend in manufacturing.

FUSO modelers’ attention to detail and commitment to expressing the brand’s essence in their designs differentiates their work from the digital-only design processes of many competitors. The attention of these master craftsmen, or “takumi,” to even the smallest of details reflects Mitsubishi Fuso’s understanding that commercial vehicle design in not simply about aesthetic value, but maximizing the value of trucks and buses for customers. Compared to passenger cars, trucks and buses have more rigid parameters they must clear in order to be considered for sale, such as load capacity, dimensions, and wheel base. There is a comparatively limited space in which the design team can exercise its abilities. But taken another way, the differentiation Mitsubishi Fuso can offer within this limited space makes all the difference. Each decision taken by the clay modelers reflects their commitment to perceived quality and the optimization of every aspect of the commercial vehicle.

Production Design

Mitsubishi Fuso design is always about form and function, pleasing eye and mind. It is about beauty, ease and harmony (Wa), as well as the creation of driving comfort, safety, efficiency and economy. The latest model of the light-duty truck Canter, which was showcased at this event, features a cab design that was renewed for the first time in 10 years with the Black Belt design motif. With this new motif, FUSO designers breathed new life into the Canter’s speedy and light character positioning within the product range. Touches of modernity and solidity were part of this reinterpretation, through which the Canter has evolved into a sophisticated leading face of the current truck scene.

The value of the Black Belt design motif is not only limited to exterior design, but also extends its benefits to the vehicle assembly process to improve the superiority of FUSO products. With the adoption of the Black Belt design motif in the Canter, the structure of the front grill now enables greater efficiency in the vehicle assembly process while creating a sleeker, unified look.

This aspect of Production Design, and the implementation of the Black Belt motif, also applies to the common LED headlight. The common headlight design, which is used in the Canter, Aero Ace/Queen and Rosa, supports a more efficient development process for each vehicle. In addition, by introducing the common headlamp, it became possible to reduce the number of parts from three to two, comprising of only the lamp and the garnish. The integrated headlight design therefore contributes not only to a more efficient development of the entire vehicle, but also to the reduction of total development costs.

In addition, the Black Belt design motif, which was also introduced with the model year 2019 coach bus “Aero Queen/Ace” and model year 2018 microbus “Rosa,” provides FUSO products with an immediately recognizable identity, bolstering the brand’s overall visibility within the commercial vehicles industry. Even with changes to exterior coloring or additions of customer liveries, the FUSO brand name and its unique design elements remain clearly recognizable. The importance of Production Design is therefore two-fold: it supports a common family appearance within the FUSO product lineup, but it also means significant time and cost benefits for Mitsubishi Fuso as well as customers.

Production Design also enhances the quality of all FUSO products by taking advantage of 3D surface data in the design development process for the front mask. By leveraging the technology of 3D surface modeling, FUSO designers can easily explore how vehicles will appear with fewer creases and folds, how the wind noise will be impacted, and even how assembly on the factory line will be ordered. The design team will always seek to connect all of these elements smoothly to produce a product with unified intention and superior aerodynamics. This is another way in which the simplification principle manifests in the design process at Mitsubishi Fuso; 3D surface modeling achieves several optimization goals at once. It contributes not only to beautiful exteriors, but also to better aerodynamics, efficient assembly orders, as well as the strength and durability of parts.

Color, materials and finish also play an important role in Production Design at Mitsubishi Fuso. These aspects of vehicle interior design directly impact the aesthetic appeal of the final product, but also enhance a vehicle’s functionality for drivers. The interior of the “Rosa” exhibited at the Design Essentials event provides a sophisticated and luxurious feeling through choice of color and material. At the same time, designers made sure to distinguish the texture selection for various switches within the cockpit, boosting the intuitive usability of vehicle. Production Design therefore reaches beyond appearance for appearance’s sake, but aims to achieve better comfort for the driver, and better efficiency, both in on the manufacturing line and in on-road use.

Advanced Design

The shift to zero emission trucks and busses, as well as digitization, automation and the needs of an aging society, open up completely new dimensions for Mitsubishi Fuso Design. At Mitsubishi Fuso, we have a professional team dedicated to ‘Advanced Design,’ which tries to meld expected technical developments with predicted social trends and needs. These designers are currently envisioning the world in which we will be living in 2040. Their role is to shift boundaries and prepare Mitsubishi Fuso and the surrounding society for what the future will bring. Furthermore, certain aspects of Advanced Design also flow back into Mitsubishi Fuso’s current series of products.

At the Design Essentials event, Mitsubishi Fuso exhibited its recent concepts for emergency vehicles, including future forms of drones. With these vehicles, Mitsubishi Fuso aims to explore further optimizations of natural disaster response in societies like Japan, while also examining possible future forms of fully autonomous trucks.

Additionally, visitors were invited to experience the ‘virtual design studio’, which has recently been established to make full use of cutting-edge virtual reality (VR) technologies and encourage collaboration among global Daimler colleagues. This ‘virtual design studio’ plays an important role in a post-covid world. With safety a top priority within Mitsubishi Fuso, this technology has helped the Design team stay on track of projects without sacrificing employee health. Through their VR platform, employees based in Germany, Japan, the United States, and India are working together simultaneously on projects in the pipeline.

Exhibited Vehicles:

*All the exhibited vehicles are concept models. This does not describe any development plans.

The modular I.RQ (Intelligent. Rescue Truck)

The I.RQ is an emergency vehicle energized by a fuel-cell drive. Its design is inspired by the current high-floored 4WD variation of the light-duty Canter truck. The high-floored 4WD achieves a unique position within the commercial vehicles market with its unmatched performance over rough terrain. The I.RQ takes these strengths and builds on them further with an autonomous driving feature, so that it can safely conduct rescue activities in difficult situations such as snowy or mountainous areas.

The connection between the body and chassis has been developed for modularity, allowing for the body to be exchanged depending on scenario and purposes. This means that a single vehicle is able to respond to a variety of situations and environments. For example, while a natural disaster may initially require a tipper truck to carry away debris from a blocked road, the tipper could also be exchanged for a simple van body later in the same day to deliver food and clothes to evacuees.

With these features, the I.RQ proposes a means of increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of future emergency vehicles. It can act alone, or connect with several other vehicles on coordinated missions.

Furthermore, each I.RQ is envisioned to be equipped with an automated HeliDroid, which can precede the I.RQ to deliver first aid kits to victims and conduct primary surveys in particularly challenging conditions.

The HeliDroid is presented as one possible future vision for a transport drone.

In line with the Daimler Truck purpose statement, “For all who keep the world moving,” Mitsubishi Fuso constantly remains open to considering any possible forms of transportation. Designers at the Kawasaki Design Center already have in their vision a future where commercial vehicles will no longer only drive on roads, but also fly in the air. HeliDroid is our suggestion to this possibility.

Although the HeliDroid has been designed with rescue scenarios in mind, it can of course be of help in other situations. In combination with the lateral, on-road movement covered by existing vehicles, the HeliDroid can provide better mobility solutions to address needs that can only be solved with vertical transportation. For example, it could potentially reduce driver workload during urban deliveries, with its ability to easily cover the distance from a vehicle on the ground to an upper level of a high-rise condominium.

The HeliDroid delivers objects by carrying them in a compartment under its body. It flies autonomously and possesses a digital personality to interactively communicate with the individuals operating it, or those being aided.

The Advanced Design team also has followed its pursuit of simplification in the design of the HeliDroid. With the integration of commonly exposed parts into one solid surface, not only does the vehicle look more unified, it also delivers higher energy efficiency and user safety.

The Manta

The Manta is another concept for the future of the drone.

Simplification comes up here again, as a core guiding principle of FUSO design. As the components of industrial products such as vehicles approach higher levels of integration, the overall shape of the product usually tends to become simpler and more spherical. This is oftentimes a reflection of technological advancements over time, with the smartphone and the airplane providing just a few examples of the common trend. The form of the Manta presented at the Design Essentials event is almost a physical representation of this impulse towards simplicity. The highly integrated shape of the Manta achieves more than a futuristic look, however – its smooth surfaces also serve to support higher transportation efficiency and better user safety during its flights.

Virtual Design Studio

In addition to utilizing virtual reality (VR) technology in our daily design activities, Mitsubishi Fuso has recently established a virtual design studio to support the international exchange required in key projects. As part of the global Daimler Trucks network, those in Kawasaki have many opportunities to collaborate with colleagues overseas, such as in Germany, United States, and India, regardless of nationalities or time differences. With VR glasses and controllers, Daimler Trucks designers can step into the same virtual studio beyond borders. Contributors from various regions around the world are then able to see the images and models from the same angle, leading to more productive discussions and faster decision making. This method of online collaboration has become increasingly appropriate in a post-covid world where travel is both less feasible and needed.

In the virtual design studio, designers can also see how vehicles run in different environments, and estimate how their creations interact with their surroundings. Vehicles often operate in more than one type of setting. In addition to cities, they may go through mountains, along the coast, or even through deserts. In our virtual design studio, designers can place potential vehicles within various programmed conditions to account for this diversity of use case. With aid of these technologies, the virtual design studio aims to provide the world with the trucks and buses that serve society in the most seamless manner possible.

Another key fact of the virtual design studio is that it enables designers to investigate the interior and exterior of vehicles more efficiently. Until now, designers had only been able to study either the vehicle exterior or interior at any one time, and explore the impact of decisions on those two aspects independently. In a VR world, however, designers can break any part of a vehicle to see inside. Choices for the interior, such as color and material selections, can exchanged and reviewed almost instantaneously. To repair the deconstructed design, they simply need to click a mouse once or twice, allowing considerable accelerations in the overall product development process.

Why does Mitsubishi Fuso invest in Design?

Mitsubishi Fuso produces professional tools
In a world that moves at an ever-quickening pace, the time and resources required to perfect the design for a truck may at first seem unjustifiable. Yet Mitsubishi Fuso continues to invest in this aspect of product development with the belief that a commercial vehicle is more than just about moving something from A to B. Every truck or bus on the line represents an opportunity to provide the most perfect tool possible for drivers and logistics operators. For the Mitsubishi Fuso design team, this means deciding each detail so that the FUSO vehicles running in more than 170 markets around the world can be the most durable, safe, and environmentally friendly business partners.

Mitsubishi Fuso contributes to society

Design at Mitsubishi Fuso is also deeply rooted in the understanding that trucks and buses serve communities. FUSO vehicles exist in the day to day, carrying both people and goods where they need to be. All models are therefore intended not only to run as reliably and safely as possible, but blend into any environment and have a minimal footprint. The FUSO design team envisions its vehicles not just as their own entity, but as part of landscapes and interactions. And, as the necessity for environmentally conscious societies becomes clearer and clearer, vehicle design at Mitsubishi Fuso is also evolving into a discipline that explores how trucks and buses can continue to keep the world moving sustainably, many decades down the road.

Mitsubishi Fuso creates products that attract

Designers of FUSO products understand that trucks and buses are moving ambassadors, not only for the brand, but for the business owner. FUSO vehicles are therefore intended to be beautiful machines that communicate the pride of the Mitsubishi Fuso team as well as our customers. The pursuit of attractive design also means creating tools that people will want to rely upon day in and day out, and involve in their endeavors. This ultimately reflects the core of Mitsubishi Fuso’s role in the world: we develop mobility solutions to embrace a better life for people and the planet.

As Benoit Tallec comments, “FUSO trucks and buses are more than just simple transporters. They’re made to be participants in our world, a world that’s transforming day by day. That’s why we didn’t compromise on our design principles for our current product lineup, and why we’re already applying them to our vision of the future.”

Related images can be found on the Daimler Media Site:
https://media.daimler.com/marsMediaSite/ko/en/49589037

・    Daimler Trucks Asia Taiwan (DTAT) established to expand FUSO brand offerings in Taiwan, inaugurates Taiwanese Office in Taipei, Taiwan
・    DTAT, a joint venture between MFTBC and SYC, will expand its local product portfolio based on Taiwanese requirements to ensure the best truck customer experience
・    DTAT to launch a number of programs addressing social responsibility in Taiwan
・    With FUSO’s strong brand presence, establishing DTAT further extends its long-term commitment in Taiwan’s market

Kawasaki, Japan/Taipei, Taiwan – Daimler Trucks Asia Taiwan Ltd. (DTAT) today launched its new office in Taipei, Taiwan, officially introducing DTAT to the Taiwanese market. DTAT was established in Taiwan in August, 2016, as a joint venture between Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) – one of Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers, and Shung Ye Trading Company Ltd. (SYC), a leading player in the Taiwanese commercial vehicles market. The joint venture, in which MFTBC holds a 51 percent stake, and SYC 49 percent, is responsible for the exclusive import and wholesale businesses for the full range of FUSO products, including light-, medium-, heavy-duty trucks, and light-, medium-duty buses. With the newly formed business setup including import, assembly, wholesale and retail, DTAT will further enhance FUSO’s strong presence in the Taiwanese market.
Michael Kamper, Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing, Sales and Customer Services Trucks Asia at the opening ceremony held in Taipei, said: “A strong market presence is key to DTA’s success. Taiwan is among the most important markets for DTA in the world. Therefore, through our direct presence with DTAT, we have a simple mission: to be close to our customers in our top market. We are confident that we will be able to bring our Truck Customer Dedication to the next level in Taiwan.”
Customer Dedication is at DTAT’s core
DTAT’s presence brings the Fuso brand closer to Taiwan’s customer base, reinforcing its clear commitment to the Taiwanese market. It continues to provide world-class customer services and the highest uptime to customers through 159 dealerships – the most extensive retail network in Taiwan.
Under the new company, DTAT will strengthen Taiwanese product portfolio which brings specific market oriented products to ensure the best-in-class customer experience for customers. Below are some of the offerings to be introduced in 2017.

・    The independent front suspension, 3.49t light-duty Canter, with both Automatic Manual Transmission and Manual Transmission versions ensures customers will not only get the most  comfortable driving experience, but one that is also the most cost efficient and with the highest payload.
・    The 6.5t light-duty Canter, designed in compliance with the Taipei’s new regulation of the maximum allowable gross vehicle weight, will be introduced to meet the needs of Taiwanese customers.
・    Safety and drivability are important features; DTAT will provide customers with the best 360 degree visibility driving experience during this opening month of April, for all new purchases, front and rear cameras will be included for all light-duty trucks, and 4-camera systems for medium-duty, heavy-duty trucks and buses, giving customers the best driving experience.
・    DTAT as a pioneer in innovation of technology will provide vehicles with the most-advanced technologies. To this end, DTAT will start a feasibility study of FUSO’s all-electric truck eCanter for the Taiwanese market.

Kristin Chun-Chi Lin, Chairwoman of SYC and DTAT said: “The establishment of DTAT represents a new page of FUSO commercial vehicles in Taiwan. To support various customers’ transportation needs is our first and principal commitment. Now the new company has started its operation. We definitely will soon bring more FUSO products meeting the needs of our Taiwanese customers, and introduce innovative services satisfying Taiwanese customers.”
Joe Wong, CEO of DTAT said: “Taiwan is one of FUSO’s most important markets worldwide, and I am convinced that DTAT’s direction will help further enhance our commercial vehicles business and strengthen FUSO’s dominant position in Taiwan.”
Social Responsibility for the Taiwanese society
DTAT has a strong commitment to the Taiwanese society in the areas of advanced products, as well as helping to develop Taiwan’s local talent through social responsibility programs.

・    DTAT would sponsor free highway vehicle inspections for dealers to collect and analyze vehicle usage data. The goal is to increase awareness among drivers for correct maintenance                  practices and safety aimed at contributing to decreasing the number of accidents.
・    DTAT will launch a roadshow to promote career programs across Taiwan with the aim of nurturing local talent.
・    DTAT will launch an assistance program in which FUSO trucks would be provided for relief after natural disasters.

Strong presence of FUSO in the Taiwanese market
FUSO products have been sold in Taiwan through SYC since 1958. Taiwan is the third largest export market for FUSO, and it is the number one brand in the Taiwanese commercial vehicle market, with a market share of around 34% in 2016. Dating back to1934, FUSO entered the Taiwanese market for the first time with the light bus “B46”. In 1973, a KD operation was started for heavy-duty trucks, followed by one for the flagship light-duty truck “Canter” in 1983. In 2013, the hybrid light-duty truck “Canter Eco Hybrid” was introduced as the first ever hybrid commercial truck for the market. And now in 2017, due to the strength and long-term relationship between MFTBC and SYC, the establishment of DTAT begins a new chapter for FUSO in its already long and proud Taiwanese history.

MFTBC at a Glance
Based in Kawasaki, Japan, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) – a part of DTA – is one of Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers. In 2015, the company sold a total of about 154,200 vehicles including light-, medium- and heavy-duty trucks and buses under the Fuso brand. Daimler AG owns 89.29% and various Mitsubishi group companies own 10.71% of MFTBC shares. MFTBC is an integral part of the Daimler Trucks division of Daimler AG.

SYC at a Glance
Shune Ye Trading Co. Ltd. (SYC) is the administrative company of Shung Ye Group. Shung Ye Group is a longstanding FUSO vehicles dealer in Taiwan. It started from import and export trades and now represents various world-famous brands such as FUSO commercial vehicles, Mercedes-Benz heavy-duty commercial vehicles, Mitsubishi passenger and SUV vehicles, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries gasoline/diesel engines and generators, JX Nippon Oil & Energy’s lubricants, STAMFORD/AVK alternators, John Deere diesel engines and etc. in Taiwan. The group focuses mainly on sales and service of motor vehicles and peripheral operations via affiliate companies within the group. One of the leading commercial vehicle dealers in Taiwan, Shung Ye Group continues to build/expand its outlets in the country and to provide customers its quality and speedy service. In 2015, the group has nearly 3,000 employees, owns 80 sales/service outlets with sales revenue exceeds USD 800 million.

Daimler Trucks Asia at a Glance
Daimler Trucks Asia (DTA) is an organizational unit that jointly operates Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) – an icon of the Japanese commercial vehicle industry with more than 80 years of its history – and Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV), a young challenger in the Indian market. DTA has a strategic business model that allows its group entities to collaborate in product development, production, exports, sourcing and research activity to provide the best of value products.

MFTBC at a Glance
Based in Kawasaki, Japan, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) is one of the Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers. In 2015, the company sold a total of about 154,200 vehicles including light-, medium- and heavy-duty trucks and buses as FUSO brand. Daimler AG owns 89.29% and various Mitsubishi group companies own 10.71% of MFTBC shares. MFTBC is an integral part of the Daimler Trucks division of Daimler AG.

DICV at a Glance
Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV) is a 100% subsidiary of Daimler AG, Stuttgart, Germany. DICV is a fully fledged commercial vehicle player in the Indian market. It currently produces and sells above 9 to 49 tons trucks for the Indian volume market, under the brand name – BharatBenz. BharatBenz stands for Indian engineering with German DNA.
Under its bus division, the company will produce and sell BharatBenz buses and Mercedes-Benz buses from its manufacturing plant at Oragadam. Bharat-Benz products have been engineered to serve all major customer segments with a focus on total-cost-of ownership, safety, reliability and comfort. Under the umbrella of Daimler Trucks Asia, DICV and MFTBC (Mitsubishi Trucks and Bus Corporation) are optimizing research activities, product development and sourcing. The DICV built FUSO trucks from Oragadam are exported to markets in South East Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
The state-of-the-art production plant at Oragadam, near Chennai, spreads over 400 acres (160 hectares). It includes a modern test track designed to simulate Indian conditions – making it one of its kind in Asia. DICV has made an initial investment of approximately €750 million for the bus plant facility. Sustainability being a core of Daimler’s corporate culture, DICV will focus on creating efficient, reliable and ecologically friendly products.

・    FUSO showcased its all-electric light-duty truck eCanter at the National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA) Work Truck Show 2017, in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
・    The truck on display is an outlook on the small series to be launched and delivered to customers later this year in the US, Europe and Japan
・    FUSO will be the first OEM to launch a series model of all-electric light-duty trucks, making it the frontrunner in electric trucks
・    Through customer trials in real-life conditions, the zero emission FUSO eCanter has proved to be technically reliable and economically viable with enough mileage and payload for daily use

Kawasaki, Japan – Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) showcased its all-electric, battery-powered light-duty truck eCanter at the National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA) Work Truck Show in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA.

The eCanter is the answer to increasing noise and emission pollution in today’s urban environments, making inner-city delivery clean and silent. It can travel a range of more than 100km, exceeding the average distance that many short-radius distribution trucks usually travel per day – for example, in Japan, on an average, 80% of light-duty inner-city delivery trucks travel about 50km per day.

Through customer trials in real-life conditions, the zero emission FUSO eCanter proved to be technically reliable and economical, able to cover enough mileage and payload for daily use.

Jecka Glasman, President and CEO, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck of America, Inc. said at the event; “We believe the eCanter will help us chart the future of light-duty trucking in urban environments. It delivers up to a 100 mile range, with zero emissions and zero noise pollution—what we call positive energy. We have had preliminary conversations with several customers and their interest and enthusiasm for the product are very encouraging.”

The displayed vehicle is an outlook on the small series of eCanter that was first shown at the 2016 International Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) – the biggest international commercial vehicle show in Hanover, Germany, where it attracted worldwide attention.

The small series of eCanter will be launched and delivered to customers from late 2017 in the US, Japan and Europe. This makes FUSO the first OEM to launch a series model of all-electric light-duty trucks that comes with full warranty and service through its extensive dealer network.

Being a frontrunner in the fully-electric truck segment, MFTBC has so far invested 40mn euros in the development of electric driving including research and development. The zero emission model will be manufactured at FUSO’s state-of-the art production plants in Tramagal, Portugal and Kawasaki, Japan.

FUSO at a Glance
FUSO is one of the brands of Daimler Trucks, present in nearly all regions around the world including; Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. FUSO’s light-duty to heavy-duty trucks (GVW 3.5–49 tons), vans, industrial engines, and buses are sold in more than 160 markets. The Fuso brand is based on four core brand values; Trusted Quality, Economic Efficiency, Solid & Functional Design, and Committed Services.

MFTBC at a Glance
Based in Kawasaki, Japan, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) is one of Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers. In 2015, the company sold a total of about 154,200 vehicles including light-, medium- and heavy-duty trucks and buses under the Fuso brand. 89.29% of its shares are owned by Daimler AG and10.71% by various Mitsubishi group companies. MFTBC is an integral part of the Daimler Trucks division of Daimler AG.

FUSO achieved a cumulative sales milestone of one million light-duty Canter trucks, known as Colt Diesel in Indonesia, since it began selling in 1975
・    FUSO is the first commercial vehicle brand that has achieved this milestone with a single model in a single market
・    In Indonesia, FUSO has been in the top position for forty-six consecutive years since its entry into the market in 1970 and the start of vehicle sales the following year
・    Colt Diesel has a 55% market share in the light-duty segment in Indonesia, making it the highest volume light-duty truck in the market in 2016 alone
・    This is the result of a strong relationship between FUSO’s General Distributor KTB and MFTBC to customize the most suitable products and provide the most dedicated customer services in the Indonesian market
Kawasaki: Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) achieved a cumulative sales milestone of one million light-duty Canter trucks, known as Colt Diesel in Indonesia, since it began selling in 1975.

FUSO is the first commercial vehicle brand that has achieved this milestone with a single model in a single market. Colt Diesel vehicles started to be sold in1975 when the demand for transportation increased, and the Indonesian government started to promote automotive business in Indonesia. In the same year, the vehicles started to be assembled locally. The Indonesian business for the Fuso brand has been managed by PT Krama Yudha Tiga Berlian Motors (KTB), MFTBC’s general distribution partner, who has been exceptionally successful in the market for more than forty-seven years.

Mr. Michael Kamper, Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing, Sales and Customer Services Trucks Asia, said: “46 years of our hard work have led to an undisputed leadership in the Indonesian light-duty truck market. For both Daimler Trucks Asia as well as our JV partner KTB this is a genuine accomplishment and long term success story. We will be further strengthening the relationship between KTB and us.”

At the ceremony event held on March 10 in Jakarta, Mr. Kay-Wolf Ahlden, Head of Daimler CV Regional Centre Southeast Asia, delivered his ceremonial speech: “This milestone could not be reached without the trust of our valued customers, the support of our professional sales partners, and the support of the Indonesian economy and government. Everywhere you go in this country you can see small but strong yellow trucks, working hard, day and night, to grow and build this country.”

Mr. Atsushi Kurita, Director of KTB, said: “This remarkable achievement in the history of commercial vehicle in Indonesia was only made possible because the Indonesian society accepted our Colt Diesel. I hope that this historical achievement will further strengthen foundation of Mitsubishi Fuso presence in Indonesia, so our product can contribute to support developing the Indonesian country.”

At the event, KTB also revealed the new brand ambassador for Mitsubishi Fuso – Mr. Iwan Fals – a legendary musician and Indonesian Hero, who will be promoting the Fuso brand for the upcoming year.

FUSO has been the market leader in Indonesia for forty-six consecutive years since its entry into the market in 1970 and the start of vehicle sales the following year. Colt Diesel – an icon of Indonesia – has a 55% market share in the light-duty segment making it the highest volume light-duty truck in the market in 2016. This is the result of a strong relationship between FUSO’s General Distributor KTB and MFTBC, to customize the most suitable products and provide the most dedicated customer services.
In 2016 MFTBC made an agreement with Mitsubishi Corporation, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and PT Krama Yudha to increase its shareholding in KTB from 18% to 30%, as Indonesia is FUSO’s largest market and as such one of its most important export markets. FUSO continues to see growth potential in the commercial vehicle market in Indonesia.


One millionth Limited Edition

FUSO at a Glance
FUSO is one of the brands of Daimler Trucks, present in nearly all regions around the world including; Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. FUSO’s light-duty to heavy-duty trucks (GVW 3.5–49 tons), vans, industrial engines, and buses are sold in more than 160 markets. The Fuso brand is based on four core brand values; Trusted Quality, Economic Efficiency, Solid & Functional Design, and Committed Services.

MFTBC at a Glance
Based in Kawasaki, Japan, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation, (MFTBC) is one of Asia’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturers. In 2015, the company sold a total of about 154,200 vehicles including light, medium, and heavy-duty trucks and buses under the Fuso brand. Together 89.29% of its shares are owned by Daimler AG, and 10.71% by various Mitsubishi group companies. MFTBC is an integral part of the Daimler Trucks division of Daimler AG.