Volta Trucks Expects its First US Trucks to be on the Road Next Year
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Volta Trucks has announced that its Zero electric trucks will be operating on the streets of LA by the end of next year. The electric truck startup has revealed its full US strategy which will see the company appoint an “experienced” US-based manufacturing partner later this year and develop its own network of service and maintenance facilities. “Since the launch of Volta Trucks in 2019 and the reveal of the Volta Zero in September 2020, we have used London, Paris, and other European launch cities, where fleets are increasingly converting to electric, to prove that our concepts align to customers’ needs.
With more than 6,000 vehicle pre-orders in hand, from some of Europe’s largest fleet operators, it is time to expand our geographic horizons and look towards the significant market opportunity in North America,” said Carl-Magnus Norden, Volta’s founder. Volta is expecting that its Class 7 truck – equivalent to a European 16-ton vehicle – will be ready for customer evaluation next year. The smaller Class 5 and 6 models, akin to European 7.5- and 12-ton trucks, will follow shortly afterwards.
The Zero trucks will also be available with a dry or refrigerated cargo box. An initial fleet of 100 pilot trucks will be available next year before full production kicks into gear in 2024. To date, the company has built 24 road-going “Design Verification” prototypes which are currently undergoing testing in Europe. Similarly, the company will set up ts service and maintenance centres across the US – similar to its operations in Europe – and essential to the company’s “Truck-as-a-Service” proposition.
The Truck-as-a-Service proposition is designed to be a one-stop-shop to help companies transition to electric fleets, bundling everything into a single offering with a monthly payment. Initial site assessment of customer facilities to understand charging needs, as well as installation, are included along with the financing and insuring of the vehicles to “accelerate adoption” and “derisk” ownership. Servicing and maintenance are, naturally, included over the lifetime of the trucks.
Volta will also look to develop its own Volta Trucks Hubs in the US to carry out vehicle servicing and maintenance. The Hubs will be located close to customers’ logistics centres to maximise uptime and convenience. Finally, the company wants to start manufacturing the trucks with a US-based partner.
Volta hopes that an agreement will be signed later this year. The first Class 7 trucks are to be built at Volta’s existing site in Steyr, Austria but all of the later Class 5 and 6 vehicles bound for North America will be built in the US starting from 2024/25. “I believe our full-electric truck will be perfectly suited to the US customer’s needs,” continued Norden, “and we look forward to engaging customers to gain feedback on our product and services, then testing and learning as we look to exceed their expectations.
I am looking forward to meeting some of North America’s largest fleet customers and introducing them to our full-electric Class 7.”