Volta Trucks, a start-up with offices in Sweden and the UK, is working on the prototype of an all-electric 16-ton truck. The Volta Zero, due for launch later this year is to use hi-tech organic materials developed together with the European Space Agency, ESA.
But first to the more down to earth data available so far. Volta envisions their e-truck doing innercity logistics with zero tailpipe emissions. Measuring 9.46 x 2.55 x 3.4 metres and with an 8.6-ton payload, the vehicle features an unspecified electric drivetrain powered by 160-200 KWh battery pack. Volta Power promises a range of 150 to 200 km (93-124 miles) at a maximum speed of up to 90 kph (50-56 mph) – enough for city driving.
Volta claims the motor position, or rather the lack of an internal combustion engine helps position the operator in a central driving position, with a lower seat height than a conventional truck. The cab design with glass all around gives the driver a wide 220-degrees of visibility, while cameras sort out the remaining blind spots.
Talking about the design, the truck’s body is made from natural Flax material and biodegradable resins. Bcomp of Switzerland supplies Volta Trucks with the composite developed in collaboration with the European Space Agency. The high-tech Flax consists of flax fibres mixed with biodegradable resins (made by British Bamp). The result is what Volta describes as a “fully natural, extremely lightweight, high-performance fibre reinforcement that is almost CO2 neutral over its lifecycle”. More so, the panels “can match the stiffness and weight of carbon fibre but use 75% less CO2 to produce,” says the company.
Rob Fowler, Chief Executive Officer of Volta Trucks, believes “that sustainability is more than just tailpipe emissions,” when explaining the company’s “environmental-first approach to all material sourcing”. However, we’ve yet to see the prototypes in action.
The company is currently constructing the first units together with the British Prodrive. Volta Trucks is hoping to launch the first Volta Zero later this year with the first pilot tests with potential customers to start in the first quarter of 2021. The trials will run as ‘Pioneer Programme’ according to the company’s website. In another announcement, Volta Trucks names Bring and Posten, distributor of parcels, cargo, and mail in the Nordic region, as partners for an “exclusive trial of its forthcoming Volta Zero”.
In the mid-term, they hope to make 2,000 electric trucks a year. Volta Trucks has yet to specify where and how they will make these numbers.
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