Volvo Trucks is gearing up for a rapid upswing in electrification of heavy road transport in the expectation that almost half of all truck transport could be electrified in the near future.

Citing Eurostat statistics from 2018, Volvo says 45% of all goods transported by road in Europe travelled a distance of less than 300km, making it “totally feasible for far more transport companies to go electric,” says Roger Alm, President of Volvo Trucks.

Volvo’s ambition is backed up by the planned launch of three heavy duty trucks to its electric line-up. Production of the electric Volvo FH and Volvo FM models will start in the second half of 2022, offering higher load capacities, more powerful drivelines and a range of up to 300km.

“There is huge potential to electrify truck transports in Europe, and also in other parts of the world, in the very near future,” says Alm. “To prove this, we have set a goal to have electric trucks account for half of our sales in Europe by 2030. These three new heavy-duty trucks mark a giant step towards reaching this target.”

“More and more transport companies are realizing they need to start their electrification journey right now, both with the environment in mind and for competitive reasons to satisfy customer requirements for sustainable shipping,”Alm says, adding, “Electrified transport is now possible not only for urban areas but also for regional traffic between cities.”

Looking further ahead, Volvo is backing use of hydrogen fuel cell generated electricity for long-distance heavy transport. “This technology is developing rapidly. Our ambition is to make the long driving distances electrified, using both batteries and fuel cells. Our aim is to start selling fuel-cell electric trucks in the second part of this decade and we are confident we can make this happen,” says Alm.