Volvo Trucks has been pushing ahead with a program to introduce electric versions of its whole truck range and is well into the process of moving the electrification of trucking forward.
“By 2040, our aim is that all trucks that we sell will then be net zero emission trucks.”
Branded as a Sustainability Summit, Volvo presented examples of electric trucks and outlined how they expect the process of reducing carbon emissions from the trucking industry to play out.
Volvo characterised the near future as one of the more exciting and disruptive periods in road transport industry. For the event, the Swedish truck maker brought the big guns out with the company’s Global President and CEO, Roger Alm, on hand to lead the presentations.
“This is actually the biggest transformational period for Volvo since we began building trucks over 100 years ago, and we are only at the beginning of this latest transformation, a lot of things will happen in the coming years. We as Volvo trucks are the first mover into this situation, because we decided very early that electrification is the best way to reach zero carbon transport for our customers and society.
“It was in 2019 that we started series production on our first electric trucks for city distribution and refuse handling. In September last year, it was big news when we started production of our heavy duty electric products. Today, we have six electric truck models in serial production, covering the majority of our customer needs, everything from city distribution to regular haulage and construction tasks. This is, by far, the widest offering in the industry of electric trucks.
“We have sold more than 5,000 trucks into 40 countries and we are selling electric trucks every day. This year, we will also start to sell electric trucks in all the continents, in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Being the first movers on the market, means that we are breaking new ground and we are doing that together with our customers.”
Heavy trucks represent approximately seven per cent of global CO2 emissions and that figure is likely to increase as the population grows around the world. The truck manufacturing industry needs to shift to fossil fuel free transport.
“By 2030, our ambition is that 50 per cent of the global volume that we sell will be battery electric (BEV) or fuel cell electric (FCEV),” said Alm. “By 2040, our aim is that all trucks that we sell will then be net zero emission trucks. This is really necessary in order to deliver on the Paris Agreement, meaning that the entire population of trucks that we have should be zero emission by 2050.
“I think this is a very ambitious goal, but we are so very determined, and we are investing heavily, more than ever, to be there to lead the transformation.”
The Volvo organisation strongly believes that battery electric trucks will be the huge majority of the trucks it sells in the future. The truck maker also realises that it will have to come up with more than one solution. What technology it uses will depend on factors like the availability of green energy, the infrastructure available and on the applications and conditions in certain markets.
The company has 13,000 engineers working on these solutions for the future. All of the cards are on the table and, according to Volvo, combustion engines (ICE) will continue to be be a solution, using renewable fuels. However, BEVs will be a very important part of the transformation, as will FCEV.