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Volvo presents first all-electric trucks to customers

Refuse and distribution vehicles presage series production start


In tune with Scandinavian truckmakers’ acknowledgement that European city government pressure is forcing adoption of low noise and low emission trucks, Volvo has handed over its first all-electric vehicles.

They are Volvo FL Electric models in the form of a refuse truck to waste and recycling company Renova, and a distribution truck to the logistics company DB Schenker and haulage partner TGM, operating in Sweden.

Series production of the Volvo FL Electric and its powerful sibling, the Volvo FE Electric, will commence with a limited number of trucks for the European markets in the second half of 2019

“Our close collaboration with drivers and customers has enabled us to develop, in a short space of time, electrified transport solutions that meet high requirements in terms of performance, driving distances, cargo handling and vehicle use,” Volvo Trucks president Roger Alm says.

Those customers’ drivers have had the opportunity to test-drive the electric trucks before delivery, as part of the operator training.

“The drivers were particularly impressed with the responsive driveline, delivering fast and seamless acceleration, and the low noise level,” Alm adds.

“We will continue to develop our electrified offering. At the same time, we are steadily reducing the environmental and climate impact of our diesel and gas powered trucks, primarily through energy-efficient drivelines.”

Read about the Volvo Fuel Super Truck’s Australian experience, here

The FL Electric and FE Electric trucks are developed for distribution, refuse handling and other urban transport applications.

The FL Electric has capacity for a GVW (gross vehicle weight) of 16 tonnes, while the FE Electric has capacity for a GVW of 27 tonnes, Volvo says.

The development comes as the European Union has decided to regulate CO2 emissions from heavy-duty vehicles.

“We’re at the stage where the technology will soon be ready for wider applications in heavy-duty transport,” Volvo Trucks director of environment and innovation Lars Mårtensson says.

“If demand is stimulated and the new charging infrastructure network is expanded, the volume will also be able to increase at a faster rate than would otherwise be possible.”

Other climate solutions include natural gas and biogas.

Volvo notes that running an FH LNG on natural gas cuts CO2 emissions by about 20 per cent compared to diesel.

With biogas, the tank-to-wheel emissions can be cut by 100 percent.

“At the same time, Volvo Trucks is continuing to develop the diesel trucks that currently make up the absolute majority of its sales,” the company says.

“Since the early 1990s, the fuel usage and COemissions of a typical long-distance Volvo truck have decreased by about 20 per cent, and there is room for additional improvements with more efficient powertrains, lower rolling resistance, and better aerodynamics. Each truck needs to be optimised for its specific transportation task.”


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