Volvo Trucks, one of the world's leading manufacturers of heavy-duty vehicles, has started serial production of electric trucks at its Ghent plant in Belgium. The company aims to offer a complete range of electric trucks for urban and regional transport in Europe by 2021.
The first electric truck to roll off the new production line was a Volvo FL Electric, a 16-tonne model designed for city distribution, waste management, and other applications. The Volvo FL Electric has a range of up to 186 miles (300 km) and can be charged in 2.5 hours with a 250 kW DC charger or 9.5 hours with a 43 kW AC charger.
The Volvo FL Electric is one of six electric truck models that Volvo Trucks offers or plans to offer in the near future. The others are:
- The Volvo FE Electric is a 27-tonne model for heavier urban distribution and refuse transport operations.
- The Volvo FH Electric is a 44-tonne model for regional transport and intercity deliveries.
- The Volvo FM Electric is a versatile model for regional transport, construction, and urban distribution.
- The Volvo FMX Electric is a robust model for construction and mining operations.
- The Volvo VNR Electric is a regional hauler for the North American market.
Why electric trucks?
Volvo Trucks believes that electric trucks are essential for achieving a fossil-free transport system and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. According to the company, road transport accounts for about 20% of the CO2 emissions in the European Union, and heavy-duty trucks represent a significant share of that.
By switching to electric trucks, transport operators can not only reduce their environmental impact but also improve their operational efficiency and competitiveness. Electric trucks offer lower noise levels, lower energy consumption, lower maintenance costs, and higher reliability than diesel trucks.
Moreover, electric trucks can help transport operators meet the increasing demand for sustainable and efficient urban logistics. As more people move to cities and e-commerce grows, the need for fast and reliable deliveries becomes more important. Electric trucks can operate in low-emission zones, during off-peak hours, and even indoors without disturbing residents or customers.
How Volvo Trucks supports the transition to electromobility
Volvo Trucks understands that switching to electric trucks is not just about buying new vehicles but also about adapting to a new way of working. That is why the company offers a comprehensive range of services and solutions to help transport operators make the transition as smooth as possible.
Some of these services and solutions include:
- A dedicated electromobility team that provides expert advice and guidance on choosing the right electric truck model, charging infrastructure, route planning, battery management, and more.
- A Volvo Gold Service Contract that covers the complete truck, including the battery, and ensures maximum uptime and performance with predictive service planning.
- A Volvo Connect portal that allows transport operators to monitor and manage their electric trucks remotely, with features such as route sharing, energy status, charging history, and environmental reports.
- A MyTruck app that enables drivers to control various functions of their electric trucks from their smartphones, such as checking the state of charge, pre-conditioning the cab, or activating the parking heater.
What's next for Volvo Trucks and electromobility
Volvo Trucks is committed to leading the development of electromobility in the heavy-duty truck industry. The company has been testing and operating electric trucks since 2010 and has gained valuable experience and feedback from customers and partners around the world.
The company plans to continue expanding its electric truck portfolio and increasing its production capacity in Europe and other markets. It also aims to collaborate with various stakeholders, such as governments, authorities, energy providers, and research institutions, to create favorable conditions and incentives for electromobility.
Volvo Trucks' vision is to become the most desired and successful transport solution provider in the world. By offering a complete range of electric trucks for different transport needs, the company hopes to contribute to a more sustainable future for its customers and society at large.