Volvo Trucks is now running tests of the electric heavy-duty Volvo FH, Volvo FM and Volvo FMX trucks, which will be used for will be used for regional transport and urban construction operations in Europe. These trucks will have a gross combination weight of up to 44 tonnes. Depending on the battery configuration, the trucks’ travelling range could be up to 300 km (187 miles).
"By rapidly increasing the number of heavy-duty electric trucks, we want to help our customers and transport buyers to achieve their ambitious sustainability goals. We're determined to continue driving our industry towards a sustainable future," says Roger Alm, President Volvo Trucks.
Volvo Trucks started manufacturing the Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric in 2019. These are electric trucks intended for city distribution and refuse operations, primarily in Europe. In North America, sales of the Volvo VNR Electric, a truck for regional transport, will start on 3 December 2020.
Electric vehicles for demanding and heavy long-haul operations will follow in this decade, the company states. These will be battery-electric and fuel cell electric trucks with a longer range. Volvo Trucks aims to start selling electric trucks powered by hydrogen fuel cells in the second half of this decade. Volvo Trucks' objective is for its entire product range to be fossil-free by 2040.
"To reduce the impact of transport on the climate, we need to make a swift transition from fossil fuels to alternatives such as electricity. But the conditions for making this shift, and consequently the pace of the transition, vary dramatically across different hauliers and markets, depending on many variables such as financial incentives, access to charging infrastructure and type of transport operations," explains Roger Alm.
For this reason, most transport companies will change over to electric operation in stages. In practice, many of them will have a mixed fleet of trucks powered by different fuels during a transition period, the company says.
Continues Alm: "Our chassis are designed to be independent of the driveline used. Our customers can choose to buy several Volvo trucks of the same model, with the only difference being that some are electric and others are powered by gas or diesel.
Volvo Trucks will also offer services including route planning, vehicle specification support, charging equipment and financing.
He concluded: “The long-term security that we and our global network of dealers and service workshops provide our customers with will be more important than ever."