Volvo Trucks, one of the world’s leading medium- and heavy-duty truck manufacturers, has this week introduced new and more powerful batteries for its medium-duty electric trucks which deliver an increased range of up to 450 kilometres.
When Volvo Trucks first launched its FL and FE Electric medium-duty truck range customers were able to choose between two and six lithium-ion battery packs, each of which was 50kWh.
The company then increased battery pack capacity to 66kWh, and has now increased capacity once again, with new battery packs of around 94kWh.
For the Volvo FL Electric, three to six battery packs can be installed delivering battery capacity ranges between 280kWh to 565kWh. Similarly, the FE Electric offers 3 or 4 battery packs and delivers 280kWh to 375kWh.
The Volvo FL Electric therefore now has a range of up to 450km while the Volvo FE Electric offers a range of up to 275km.
Volvo also didn’t go into detail about how they have managed to deliver a 42% increase to battery capacity, boasting only that these new batteries mean that “it is now possible to speed up the transition to quieter and cleaner city transports.”
“With a range of up to 450 km, our electric trucks are ready to replace our customers’ entire fleet of diesel city trucks,” said Jessica Sandström, senior vice president of product management at Volvo Trucks.
“Volvo FL and FE Electric produce minimal emissions and noise which benefits the climate, the driver and everyone that lives and moves about in the city.”
These higher capacity batteries also allow for fewer batteries to be used to deliver the same power as is available today.
And, considering that some companies don’t necessarily need more range, these improved batteries can still yield immediate benefits, allowing customers to increase their payload by using fewer batteries – with a payload increase of 500kg for every battery not carried.
“For some customers it’s more important to get extra payload, rather than maximizing the range,” said Sandström. “We work closely with our customers in choosing the best solution.”
Joshua S. Hill is a Melbourne-based journalist who has been writing about climate change, clean technology, and electric vehicles for over 15 years. He has been reporting on electric vehicles and clean technologies for Renew Economy and The Driven since 2012. His preferred mode of transport is his feet.