Volta Trucks has officially unveiled the all-electric, zero-emission Volta Zero, which is built from the ground up to operate as a delivery vehicle in urban environments. The 16-tonner will enter a testing phase beginning in the first half of 2021, with 12 pilot models joining the fleets of several European logistics companies before going into production in 2022.
The company says it hopes to produce 500 Volta Zero trucks by the end of 2022 with plans to increase production to 5,000 vehicles per year by 2025. Volta Trucks aims for the Zero to have the same total cost of ownership as traditional diesel trucks, and it will offer a Truck as a Service plan where owners can acquire a Volta Zero for a monthly fee that includes service, insurance, training, and more.
“An Electrified Future”
“With the launch of the Volta Zero, we are changing the face of road transport,” says Rob Fowler, CEO of Volta Trucks. “Volta Trucks is redefining the perception of the large commercial vehicle and how it operates in and integrates with the zero-emission towns and cities of the future. This is made possible by the three pillars that define both Volta Trucks as a business and the Volta Zero—safety, sustainability, and electrification. Add to that our unique Truck as a Service proposition that reimagines a fleet manager’s business model. At Volta Trucks, we are directly contributing to society’s migration towards an electrified future.”
Performance & Safety
The Volta Zero has a gross vehicle weight of 16,000 kilograms and 4,800-millimetre wheelbase. The cargo box has a 37.7-cubic-metre volume and a payload capacity of 8,600 kg. Volta Truck says the standard box can hold up to 16 Euro pallets, and the company will offer a refrigerated body as well that can pull power from the Zero’s battery, reducing CO2 particulate matter even more. Powered by a 160- to 200-kilowatt-hour Lithium Ion Phosphate battery, the Volta Zero will have a range of between 150 and 200 kilometres, making it ideal for last-mile deliveries. It also features a unique e-Axle unit that contains the motor, gearbox, and axle.
Volta Trucks also emphasised safety when designing the Zero, largely due to fact that while heavy goods vehicles only make up 4% of road miles in London, for example, such vehicles are responsible for “23% of pedestrian fatalities and 58% of cyclist deaths,” according to Volta Truck Founder Carl-Magnus Norden.
For that reason, the Volta Zero gives drivers a 220-degree view through the panoramic cab, which becomes 360 degrees when you factor in the trucks’ rear-view cameras, birds-eye camera, and blind-spot warning systems. The vehicle is also low to the ground, so the driver can see pedestrians and cyclists more easily. Other safety features include active steering, road sign assist, a reversing camera with Reversing Assist, lane change assist, and lane departure warning.
Sustainability In All Things
With the Zero, Volta Trucks set out to create a sustainable vehicle that goes beyond eliminating carbon dioxide emissions. It features a metal frame with Bcomp body panels made of a Flax composite material reinforced with a fibre PowerRibs technology that is as strong and lightweight as carbon fibre,” but uses 75% less CO2 to produce,” according to Volta. The panels also incorporate a biodegradable resin from UK-based composites producer Bamd. End-of-life flax components can also be burned to produce thermal energy. The Volta Zero’s batteries are also recyclable and can be used as energy storage devices, the company explains.