Volvo long range electric trial in Europe

Volvo is commencing a pilot test of a fully electric FH model with logistics company DHL running the truck between two of its Swedish sites.

Volvo long range electric trial in Europe
Volvo FH electric truck on trial with DHL

Starting in March, Volvo and DHL will be testing a fully electric FH model along a route of 150km with gross combination weights of up to 60 tons expected to be hauled between two of the logistics companies' localtions.

During the trial, Volvo and DHL say they hope to gain important experience and information regarding the setup and operation of an adequate charging infrastructure. The collected insights will help to find the right balance between operated distance, load weight and charging points in daily road freight operations.

While city-based electric transport is broadly accepted and somewhat of a known factor, long haul in the sense it is being applied to the heavy-duty segment is not, with a recent trip to Volvo's Wacol facility and chance to speak with VP of sales, strategy and support Paul Illmer showing that in Australia such a distance wouldn't be on the cards despite an example route of Brisbane to the Gold Coast being only 80km.

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Volvo Trucks says it is driving the necessary shift towards fossil free transports by making the transition to electrification as seamless and efficient as possible. This is done by considering every aspect of the eco-system for electrification, including charging, route planning, vehicles, service and other support.

"The transport business is changing rapidly and to be sustainable is an increasingly important business advantage for many of our customers. We offer effective transport solutions that help make a fast transition to fossil-free fuels such as electricity. We have a longstanding relationship with DHL. Their broad and global expertise in logistics allows us to study the conditions to progress with this technology shift, adapting it to customer needs and their type of transport operation," says Roger Alm, president at Volvo Trucks.

DHL Freight is actively driving various sustainability and fossil-free technology projects and has introduced a climate-focused shipping program in Sweden. Customers using the program pay a fixed surcharge for every parcel or pallet shipped and the income generated from the surcharges is fully invested in clean technologies within the Swedish network.

"The logistics sector is facing a huge challenge, which also offers a great opportunity at the same time – the decarbonization of freight transportation. The collaboration with Volvo Trucks helps DHL Freight to play an even bigger role in the transition to sustainable alternatives and is another significant proof point for our long-term strategy towards climate-neutral transportation," explains Robert Zander, CEO of DHL Freight Sweden.

Already today, the Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric trucks for city distribution are in serial production. DHL Supply Chain recently put a new Volvo FL Electric into operation in London, thereby introducing the first purpose-built fully electric Volvo truck for city distribution in the UK.

At the end of last year, Volvo Trucks in North America started sales of the VNR Electric, and this year will mark the sales start in Europe of the heavy-duty electric product range.

The route is between the cities of Gothenburg and Jönköping in Sweden, is a distance of 150 km one way, with charging to be done at DHL in Jönköping and the Volvo Truck Center in Gothenburg.

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