Volvo breaks ground with longest ever electric truck journey

The major vehicle manufacturer says it has completed a world-first with the delivery of a new electric truck.

Volvo Group has finished Australia’s longest ever journey in an electric truck, with the FH Electric driving a record-breaking 1,185 kms from Brisbane to Canberra.

The electric truck was welcomed to Canberra by ACT police, emergency services minister Mick Gentleman and Volvo Group’s emerging technology vice president Paul Illmer at The National Arboretum.

The FH Electric highlights the possibilities of zero-emissions interstate freight while transporting another Volvo Trucks Electric cab chassis.

Volvo Group Australia president Martin Merrick says the brand is always trying to push the boundaries to decarbonise heavy transportation faster.

“We have set a new record for the longest electric truck journey in Australia. This is also the maiden voyage for the FH Electric, which has only recently been able to get onto the road thanks to changes to width and weight restrictions,” Merrick says.

“Recently announced provisional changes to front-axel weight restrictions have enabled this journey and have shown what is possible in terms of zero-emission intercity transportation, but we need to see permanent changes harmonised on front axle weight restrictions across every state and territory to accelerate next generation sustainable mobility and meet our climate targets.”

The Volvo FH Electric completing this interstate journey is the largest truck in Volvo’s heavy-duty electric truck range. Launched earlier this year, it is one of the only OEM heavy duty electric trucks available to order in the country capable of regional haulage with a range of up to 300km.

The truck had to be charged completely a minimum of four times, with legislation in Australia requiring solo truck drivers to take seven hours of stationary rest time after 12 hours of driving. Volvo Group usedthese compulsory rest times to charge the truck.

The journey coincided with the delivery to Canberra of Australia’s first zero-emissions logistics vehicle for the emergency services – an FL Electric – to the ACT Emergency Service Agency (ESA).

The ACT ESA vehicle is a FL Electric and will be used for logistics tasks by the ACT ESA.

Following initial Volvo driver development training and vehicle implementation processes, this first vehicle is expected to go into operational service in and around the ACT in early 2024.

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