Volta Trucks has confirmed the start of engineering evaluation and development testing of the first prototype Volta Zero at Horiba Mira in Nuneaton, UK. Series production should begin in December 2022. The company will also be giving a UK customer roadshow next month.
Volta Trucks, a startup with offices in Sweden and the UK, has been working on the all-electric 16-ton truck prototype, the Volta Zero using hi-tech organic materials developed together with the European Space Agency, ESA. The Volta Zero will sport a high-voltage battery from Proterra, and the compact eAxle – the integrated rear axle, electric motor and transmission unit, from Meritor.
The Volta Zero was launched in September 2020. Volta envisions their electric truck doing innercity logistics. Measuring 9.46 x 2.55 x 3.4 metres and with an 8.6-ton payload. 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. The company says its safety-focused design and sustainability objectives have been positively received by customers and city legislators alike.
Chief Executive Officer of Volta Trucks, Essa Al-Saleh, said: “The prototype will provide our designers and engineers with feedback and real-world data on the vehicle performance. The learning from the prototype will also feed into the Pilot Fleet vehicles that will support our customer’s understanding of the electrification of their fleets. We have designed and developed a running prototype chassis and 18 months from now, we will be building series production vehicles for our customers.”
Volta trucks explains that the unconventional bodywork of the prototype is simply designed to protect the development driver from the elements when the vehicle is moving at speed. While the production vehicle will feature a cargo box design, the prototype uses a flatbed so that engineers may add different levels and locations of loads to test its weight-carrying capacity.
The Swedish-British company says that the prototype Volta Zero will continue testing at Horiba Mira automotive engineering, research and test services in Nuneaton, in the UK over the coming months. Forthcoming test and development programmes with this and later-specification prototypes will also include periods of cold weather testing north of the Arctic Circle, and hot weather testing in southern Europe.
To promote the zero-emission truck and its technology, the company is conducting a roadshow in the UK. This will kick off with the EV Summit at the Saïd Business School at Oxford University on 1-2 September where Founder and Executive Chairman of Volta Trucks, Carl- Magnus Norden is to participate in the electric vehicle design panel debate. After a number of stops, the roadshow will conclude with a Volta Trucks display at Freight in the City at London’s Alexandra Palace on Tuesday 28 September, amongst many other commercial vehicle brands.
The demonstrator vehicle shown at launch is currently being presented to customers at the Innovation and Technology in Transport (ITT) Hub conference in Farnborough, UK.
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