DHL Freight and Volvo Trucks have teamed up to speed up the introduction of heavy duty electric trucks to be used for regional transport in Europe.
The main use of electric trucks has been for shorter distances so far but the two companies have initiated a project focused on longer distance heavy transport.
The co-operation includes worldwide first pilot tests of an all-electric Volvo FH truck with gross combination weights of up to 60 tons, operating between two DHL Freight logistics terminals in Sweden, a distance of around 150km, from March.
During the trial, Volvo and DHL will gain important experience and information regarding the setup and operation of adequate charging infrastructure, with the collected insights helping to optimise the right balance between operated distance, load weight and charging points in daily road freight operations.
Uwe Brinks, CEO of DHL Freight said: “Our aim is to reduce all logistics-related emissions to zero. Important milestones have already been achieved in meeting this: compared to 2007, our Group’s CO2 efficiency has improved by 35%. however, we need innovative technological solutions and strong partnerships along this journey.
“I’m confident that our strong co-operation with Volvo Trucks, one of the major truck brands in the world, will support us in achieving our ambitious environmental goals in the road freight sector.”
The project is part of REEL, an initiative run by Sweden’s innovation agency Vinnova to promote the transition to an electrified freight transport system.
The route is between the cities of Gothenburg and Jönköping in Sweden, with charging done at DHL in Jönköping and the Volvo Truck Center in Gothenburg.
Roger Alm, President at Volvo Trucks added: “The transport business is changing rapidly and to be sustainable is an increasingly important business advantage for many of our customers. We offer effective transport solutions that help make a fast transition to fossil-free fuels such as electricity. We have a longstanding relationship with DHL.
“Their broad and global expertise in logistics allows us to study the conditions to progress with this technology shift, adapting it to customer needs and their type of transport operation.”