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Volvo launches electric trucks and buses for urban transport

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Volvo Trucks announces the start of sales of its Volvo FL and Volvo FE electric trucks in selected markets within Europe, meeting the increasing demand for sustainable transport solutions in city environments.

In the absence of exhaust emissions and with reduced noise levels from electric trucks offer huge potential in urban areas. First, the reduced noise levels make it possible to carry out deliveries and refuse collection in early mornings, late evenings or even at night, helping to improve transport logistics and reduce congestion during peak hours.

Second, with better air quality and less noise, electric trucks create new opportunities for city planning and road infrastructure. An electric truck can, for example be used in indoor loading areas and environmental zones.

“Global urbanization requires urban logistics and truck transport with zero emissions and less noise with increasing urgency. With the Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric we are able to meet both the strong environmental demands as well as the high commercial requirements of our customers,” says Jonas Odermalm, VP Product Line Electromobility.

One challenge is to maximize the payload at the same time as optimizing the driving range.

“Volvo Trucks’ solutions will be based on individual business needs that consider a number of parameters, such as driving cycles, load capacity and route analysis, to use the battery capacity in the most efficient way possible,” continues Jonas Odermalm.Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric were developed in close collaboration with selected customers operating in Gothenburg, Sweden. Feedback has been very positive, and the drivers involved in the collaboration are particularly impressed by the responsive driveline, seamless acceleration and how quiet the trucks are.” While customer feedback has been positive,” explains Jonas Odermalm, “we do recognize that charging infrastructure is still under development in most cities and we are working alongside both public and private partners to agree on a long-term strategy for the expansion of charging infrastructure. But it’s clear that the pace of development of charging infrastructure needs to increase.”

Addressing climate change will require the availability of several driveline technologies.

“Electric vehicles, charged with electricity from renewable sources, are indeed a powerful step towards more sustainable city distribution.

However, there will not be one singular energy source that addresses climate change and all other environmental issues. Different types of transport require different types of driveline solutions,” concludes Jonas Odermalm.

Facts about Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric

The Volvo FL Electric and Volvo FE Electric trucks have been developed for distribution, refuse handling and other urban transport applications.
Sales will start in Sweden, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, France and the Netherlands.
The start of serial production is planned for March 2020.
The Volvo FL Electric has capacity for a GVW (gross vehicle weight) of 16 tonnes, while the GVW of the Volvo FE Electric is 27 tonnes.
Volvo receives Europe’s largest order for electric buses

Meanwhile, Volvo Buses has received the largest single order for electric buses in Europe. Volvo Buses will deliver 157 electric articulated buses to Transdev starting in 2020. The buses will operate on a number of routes in Gothenburg. With their introduction, emissions and noise will be significantly reduced, and the electric buses will be able to operate in sensitive areas or zones with special restrictions.

“It is immensely gratifying that we have secured Europe’s largest ever single order for electric buses – no less than 157 buses. Volvo is a pioneer in electromobility and sustainable public transport. We have a holistic system perspective for cities that encompasses vehicles, services and charging infrastructure. We focus on solutions that offer high reliability and high service levels for route operators and passengers. This large order confirms that electric buses are already recognised as a sustainable and financially viable solution for demanding high-capacity public transport needs,” says Håkan Agnevall, President of Volvo Buses.

“Transdev is today Europe’s leading operator of electric buses and we know what challenges there are with the transition to electric propulsion. “We’ve therefore been extremely thorough in choosing a partner with a holistic approach, a partner that will be able to deliver both buses and charging infrastructure on time and with excellent uptime. Being able to announce that we have chosen Volvo as our partner for city bus operations in Volvo’s home city of Gothenburg is of course particularly satisfying,” says Gunnar Schön, CEO of Transdev Sweden.

All of the buses will be of the recently launched 7900 Volvo Electric Articulated model. The Volvo Electric Articulated can carry 150 passengers with an energy consumption that is 80 per cent lower than that of a corresponding diesel bus. The Volvo Electric Articulated combines high passenger capacity with low operating costs. The buses will be charged at quick-charge stations along the route, using the industry common charging interface OppChargeTM, in order to ensure the most efficient operation possible. In addition to the electric buses, the order includes 27 Euro VI buses for regional operations, running on biodiesel.

“For us as a mobility supplier, it is vital to always be able to offer passengers good service and functional vehicles, but it is also important that our drivers have a good working climate. New buses, in particular quiet electric buses, not only result in cleaner cities – they also improve the everyday working environment,” explains Gunnar Schön.“Electromobility creates new exiting opportunities for urban planning since we now get emission-free and quiet public transport that can operate closer to the city’s residents.

Volvo aims to be a leader in increased electrification and to be a partner for cities that wish to implement long-term sustainable public transport solutions for their inhabitants,” concludes Håkan Agnevall.

Joakim Kenndal

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