Volvo Trucks already offers purely battery-powered electric trucks and trucks powered by renewable fuels. In the second half of this decade, a third CO2-neutral option is to be added to the company's product portfolio: electric trucks with hydrogen-powered fuel cells.
"We have been developing this technology for many years, and it is a great feeling to see the first trucks successfully on the test track. The diverse range of electric trucks with batteries and others with fuel cells will enable our customers to eliminate CO2 emissions, whatever the transport task at hand," says Roger Alm, Volvo Trucks President.
According to the manufacturer, the electric trucks based on fuel cells will have a range comparable to many diesel trucks: up to 1000 kilometers with a refueling time of less than 15 minutes. In addition, the total weight can be around 65 tons or more, and the two fuel cells are capable of generating 300 kW of electricity. The first customers will start the pilot phase in a few years, and marketing is planned for the second half of this decade.
"Electric trucks with hydrogen-powered fuel cells are suitable for long distances and heavy, energy-intensive tasks. They could also be an option for countries with limited battery charging options, " says Roger Alm.
A fuel cell generates its electricity from the hydrogen in the vehicle. Therefore, it does not need to be charged from an external source. The only byproduct that is given off is water vapor. The fuel cells in the Swedish trucks will be supplied by Cellcentric, a joint venture between the Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG. Cellcentric has announced that it will build one of the largest production facilities in Europe for the series production of fuel cells in Germany, which were specially developed for heavy vehicles.
"Volvo Trucks expect the supply of green hydrogen to increase greatly over the next few years as many industries will depend on it to reduce CO2 emissions. However, Volvo Trucks can no longer postpone the decarbonization of the transport sector because we are already very late," says Alm. "So my clear message to all transport companies is: start the journey today with battery-electric, biogas and the other options available. In a few years, trucks with fuel cells will be an important supplement for longer and heavier transports."