Volvo Makes An Electric Semi-Truck a Reality By the End of 2020
It’s no secret that the auto industry is trending towards electric vehicles. Now, we’re starting to see commercial truck manufacturers discuss electric semis, and Volvo Trucks is blazing the trail. Starting this year, the OEM will be working with the state of California to develop and release a fully electric semi-truck for mass production. Volvo plans on introducing the FE Electric and FL Electric by the end of 2020.
Semi-Truck Battery Research With California
Volvo Trucks is partnering with the California Air Resources Board to complete research on batteries for the new electric models. Testing is beginning this year, and there is expected to be a wider release by the end of 2020. The project will cost $90 million to fund, a majority of which is coming from the California Air Resources Board.
The primary obstacle in manufacturing electric commercial trucks is the battery. While the technology for long-haul batteries that can get several hundred miles per charge isn’t quite available yet, Volvo Trucks continues to make strides in battery tech. The company estimates that the technology they produce will be able to get nearly 200 miles on a single charge while carrying the same amount of weight as their diesel counterparts (an upwards of 40 tons).
Bringing New Commercial Truck Models to North America
Another interesting component of these truck models is that the Volvo FE and FL aren’t available in the United States currently. Their electric updates will be the first version of these models available to North American markets. They are designed for urban use rather than long-haul shipping, so they make the perfect avenue for electric technology.
Advantages of an Electric Semi-Truck
Technology is rapidly improving the trucking industry. Processes and technology like platooning to save on fuel and overhauls in semi-truck servicing further ameliorate common pain points throughout fleets. Likewise, electric trucks like the Mack LR and Volvo FL/FE provide new channels for trucking. Electric semi-trucks make very little noise, which is perfect for after-hours use in areas with tight sound laws. These trucks can also be safely used indoors due to the fact that they do not emit fumes, which is perfect for terminals or warehouses.
While electric trucks cost more upfront, their lifetime cost to operate is much lower since electricity and batteries are significantly cheaper than maintenance and varying fuel costs. Many states also offer tax credits for purchasing electric vehicles which helps offset the cost even more.
Stepping Forward With Volvo Trucks
As technology continues to improve, we’re going to see more brands release electric semi-trucks. Volvo is just one of the brands that is innovating the industry with groundbreaking battery and motor technology.
For more information about electric semi-trucks and other options from brands like Ford, Isuzu or Mack, contact Nextran Truck Centers. With 16 locations across Georgia, Alabama and Florida, Nextran Truck Centers is the perfect option for any fleet.