Volvo Trucks, one of the world's leading manufacturers of heavy-duty trucks, has started serial production of electric trucks at its Ghent plant in Belgium. This marks a significant milestone in the company's journey towards zero-emission transport solutions. Here are some key facts and insights about Volvo Trucks' electric trucks and what they mean for the industry and the environment.
Why electric trucks?
Electric trucks offer several benefits over conventional diesel-powered trucks. They can reduce CO2 emissions, noise pollution, and air quality problems in urban areas. They can also lower operating costs, improve driver comfort, and increase productivity.
Volvo Trucks has been developing and testing electric trucks since 2018 when it introduced the Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric models for city distribution and refuse collection. Since then, the company has expanded its electric range to include the Volvo FH Electric, Volvo FM Electric, and Volvo FMX Electric for regional haulage and construction operations, as well as the Volvo VNR Electric for the North American market.
Volvo Trucks' electric trucks are designed to meet the diverse needs of different transport applications, with various axle configurations, cab options, battery capacities, and performance levels. They can handle gross combination weights of up to 44 tonnes (97,000 lbs) and offer a range of up to 300 km (186 miles) on a single charge.
How are electric trucks charged?
Volvo Trucks' electric trucks can be charged using either AC or DC power sources. AC charging is suitable for overnight charging at depots or terminals, while DC charging is faster and can be done at public stations or en route. The charging time depends on the battery size and the power output of the charger. For example, a truck with a 540 kWh battery pack can be fully charged in 9.5 hours using a 43 kW AC charger or in 2.5 hours using a 250 kW DC charger.
Volvo Trucks provides guidance and support to its customers on how to choose and install the best charging solution for their operations. The company also collaborates with charging infrastructure providers and authorities to promote the development of a comprehensive and accessible charging network across Europe and North America.
How are electric trucks serviced and maintained?
Volvo Trucks' electric trucks are covered by the Volvo Gold Service Contract, which includes preventive maintenance, repairs, roadside assistance, battery monitoring, and an uptime guarantee. The service contract also gives customers access to digital tools and services that can help them optimize their operations, such as route planning, fleet management, driver coaching, and environmental reporting.
Volvo Trucks' electric trucks are built on a proven and flexible platform that shares many components with its diesel counterparts. This means that they can be serviced and maintained by the same network of authorized Volvo workshops that have extensive experience and expertise in handling Volvo trucks. The workshops are also equipped with special tools and trained technicians to handle the high-voltage components of the electric driveline.