Signifying if nothing else the growing role of hybrid trucks on the world stage, Germany’s Daimler Trucks this week celebrated the first anniversary of its Global Hybrid Center (GHC) in Kawasaki, Japan. The OEM calls its GHC “the worldwide competence center for hybrid drive technology and its development.”

Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) marked the anniversary earlier this week at the GHC. MFTBC, an integral part of the Daimler Trucks division of Daimler AG, has to date sold more than 600 units of the Fuso Canter Eco Hybrid truck in Japan alone, noted Daimler

In its first year, according to Daimler, the GHC initially consolidated all Daimler Trucks’ hybrid drive activities worldwide. The focus was on bringing together all assessments, studies, and developments regarding hybrid technology for the individual brands Mercedes-Benz, Fuso, and Freightliner, and to use this as a basis for moving forward with hybrid systems. The OEM noted that local application centers will adapt and implement the hybrid systems to the individual vehicles and brands in their respective markets.

“Daimler Trucks sees a wide range of applications for hybrid technology in the global commercial vehicle market,” said Dr. Albert Kirchmann, president & CEO of MFTBC. “The GHC helps us to coordinate and manage Daimler Trucks’ hybrid drive activities worldwide while at the same time forging ahead with the development of hybrid drive systems.”

“The GHC team is looking forward to the upcoming challenges and is working hard to launch further hybrid vehicles for road and vocational use,” remarked Fumio Akikawa, director of the GHC. “We consider hybrid systems to be more than just another means of propulsion; they also represent an opportunity to protect and preserve our planet for future generations.”