Volvo Bringing Electric Trucks To North America In 2020

Volvo will introduce a host of all-electric truck prototypes throughout California next year before commercializing them in 2020.

In a statement, the Swedish automaker confirmed that it had been awarded $44.8 million from the California Air Resources Board for the Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy Transport Solutions) project. This project involves 16 partners and will overhaul the freight operations at the facilities of two of the nation’s top trucking fleets.

Volvo Truck’s demonstration units rolling out in 2019 will be based on the technology currently used by the Volvo FE Electric, recently unveiled in Europe and designed for heavy city distribution and refuse transport operations.

This vehicle features a pair of electric motors delivering 370 kW (496 hp) of maximum power and 850 Nm (626 lb-ft) of torque. Also found beneath the skin is a two-speed transmission, lithium-ion battery packs varying between 200 and 300 kWh in capacity, and 150 kW charging functionality.

The trucks are efficient and powerful.

“This is an excellent opportunity to show the end-to-end potential of electrification,” President of Volvo Trucks North America Peter Voorhoeve said.

“From solar energy harvesting at our customer locations, to electric vehicle uptime services, to potential second uses for batteries, this project will provide invaluable experience and data for the whole value chain.”

Volvo will initially deploy eight multi-configuration battery Class 8 electric demonstration units alongside an additional 15 pre-commercial and commercial units through California’s South Coast Air Basin.

The manufacturer says the project will result in a reduction of 3.57 tons of criteria pollutants and 3020 tons of greenhouse gases annually.

Note: Volvo FE Electric pictured.

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