Leinfelden-Echterdingen – Daimler Truck’s Asian subsidiary Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC; “FUSO”) celebrates the 90th anniversary of the FUSO brand. The origin of the iconic FUSO name dates back to May 1932, when Mitsubishi’s first bus, the “B46 type shared car”, manufactured at the Kobe Shipyard of the former Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, was branded FUSO. This name was suggested by an engineer at the shipyard. It originally refers to a large sacred tree and is now used as a name for the hibiscus flower. The 7-meter, 38-seater bus was equipped with a 7-liter, 6-cylinder and 100-horsepower gasoline engine. In commemoration of the first delivery of the B46 type bus to the Ministry of Railways, FUSO was selected from among the internal proposals for its nickname.
Karl Deppen, President & CEO of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation and Head of Daimler Truck Asia commented: “As we celebrate 90 years of FUSO, we would like to thank our customers, employees and partners for their loyalty and support. This anniversary signifies our stakeholders’ ongoing faith in our products, technologies, and services. As the automobile sector strives for decarbonization, we at MFTBC are part of the solution. We showed this commitment with our original all-electric eCanter in 2017 and our next generation model will provide e-mobilty solutions to an even broader range of customers.”
Brief history of the FUSO brand
Following the first vehicle, the nickname FUSO continued to be used thereafter for major products such as the gasoline engine 4-ton truck KT1 (1946), Japan’s first large cab-over truck T380, and Japan’s first minibus, the Rosa (1960). In line with Japan’s high economic growth in 1950s – 70s, the product lineup soon included a full range from small to large trucks and buses, playing an important part in economic development. MFTBC, the manufacturer of the FUSO branded commercial vehicles, was born when Mitsubishi Motors Corporation separated its commercial vehicle division from the passenger car business back in 2003, to become a part of the former Daimler Chrysler company. In 2004, MFTBC joined Daimler Chrysler’s Commercial Vehicles segment.
Today FUSO manufactures a full range of commercial vehicles including light, medium, and heavy-duty trucks and buses and industrial engines for over 170 markets worldwide. With a workforce of more than 11.000 employees, FUSO is an integral part of the global truck & bus portfolio of Daimler Truck AG (“Daimler Truck”) and a key pillar of the company’s business operation in the Asian hemisphere. In 2021, FUSO strongly contributed to Daimler Truck’s significant sales increase with overall unit sales of more than 125.000 units, representing over a quarter of the group’s global unit sales..
The legendary FUSO Canter light-duty truck is highly regarded around the world and holds top market shares in many countries. Since its market launch in 1963, over 4.5 million FUSO Canter have been produced worldwide. In 2021, FUSO launched the new generation of the Canter with advanced safety, comfort and design features.
FUSO eCanter – pioneer in zero-emission transport
Daimler Truck’s Asian affiliate is also considered to be a frontrunner for zero emission transport. In 2017, FUSO introduced the first generation eCanter, a pioneering all-electric light-duty truck from which more than 350 units are in customer hands in Japan, Europe and North America. These vehicles have already covered more than 4.5 million kilometers locally emission free in daily transport. As a result of five years of continuous collaboration with the first eCanter customers in terms of listening and learning, FUSO will present the completely new Next Generation eCanter soon both in Asia and Europe. This mass production model will come with further upgrades in terms of range and safety features, and will be offered with an expanded lineup of variants. More details on the Next Generation eCanter will be presented during the upcoming IAA Transportation 2022 in Hanover (20. – 25.09.).
Market leadership in important markets
FUSO is playing a vital role for Daimler Truck in some of the most important commercial vehicle markets in Asia. In Indonesia, for example, FUSO has a leading position for more than five decades with a market share of 46.7% in 2021. In Taiwan, FUSO has a share of market of approx. 33.6% – being the market leader for more than 30 years. FUSO also took the number one spot in New Zealand, where recovering demand, a growing dealership network, and an infusion of new models contributed to a market share of 19.7% in the past year. But FUSO is also a success story on European roads. In the EU30 market region, FUSO recorded a 10-year high in sales volume, claiming the top market share in the light-duty truck segment up to 10 tons, at 37.1%.
SOURCE: Daimler Truck