Upstart Volta Trucks is looking for a factory for the new electric trucks
Volta Trucks will broaden the production of electric trucks with three more models. The trucks will roll off the belt in two years – but the company’s founder Carl-Magnus Norden does not want to waste money on building his own factories.
Volta Trucks is still a long way from starting serial production of trucks. The Swedish-British startup company has only manufactured a prototype of the all-electric truck Volta Zero, which has admittedly been pre-ordered in 1,200 copies.
The founder and chairman of the board, Carl-Magnus Norden, says that the company is “very close” to finding a place for series production that is planned to start at the end of 2022 somewhere “centrally in Continental Europe”.
– Many car factories and truck factories in Europe are currently being closed down. We do not want to build our own factory, but we want to step into something where knowledgeable staff and infrastructure are already in place. For us, it is very important to get to the market as quickly as possible, without starting by building factories and investing a lot of money in it, says Norden.
Heavier and lighter
Carl-Magnus Norden is currently traveling around Europe to talk to potential customers – the interview is conducted by phone from a taxi in Barcelona. The visits have led the company to broaden the planned range from one to four models. In the first phase, the original model of 16 tons will have a slightly larger and heavier sibling of 19 tons that will be manufactured at the same time as the lighter version.
– Many of the customers we talk to say that they are interested in the model that weighs 16 tonnes, but they also need trucks of 19 tonnes, says Norden.
In the second phase, the company wants to build a truck that weighs 7.5 tons, and then upgrade it to an additional model that weighs 12 tons. The production of the latter two models is planned for the second half of 2024.
– Trucks of 7.5 tonnes are quite attractive on the continent, in Germany, for example, you are not allowed to drive larger trucks than that on motorways on Sundays, which means that the market is quite large. And in the US, the maximum limit is 12 tonnes for vehicles that can be driven by people with a B driving license. Demand differs depending on the market, says Norden.
Work environment selling point
The electric trucks have the cab low because the engine is located in the rear of the vehicle, and not in the front as in a classic fossil-powered truck. Carl-Magnus Norden highlights the lowered cab as a selling point to customers who want to keep their staff.
– Most people who drive ordinary trucks jump down from the cab, which means that after a few years in the industry they have problems with hips, knees and joints, he says and continues:
– There is a shortage of drivers on the market both in Europe and in the US, so we want to create a work environment that is better than in any other truck.
Facts: Volta Trucks trucks
The trucks will be manufactured in four weight classes: 7.5, 12, 16 and 19 tonnes.
They are fully electric and are intended to be equipped with batteries that can store 150-220 kWh.
The intended target group is customers who carry out deliveries in large cities.
Production of the two heavier models is scheduled to begin in late 2022, and in 2024 for the two lighter ones.
French Petit Forestier has ordered 1,000 copies of the Volta Zero. Another 200 or so copies have been ordered by other customers.
Facts: Volta Trucks