Volvo, Daimler, Traton teaming up to invest in EV charging

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Updated Jul 8, 2021
Electric charging station

Daimler. Traton. Volvo. Three of trucking's biggest names and fierce competitors. Well, most of the time.

The trio of truck makers made global news in the transportation industry Monday when they announced they have signed a non-binding agreement to install and operate a high-performance public charging network for battery electric heavy-duty long-haul trucks and coaches across Europe.

The joint aim is to initiate and accelerate the build-up of charging infrastructure to enhance customer confidence and to support EU’s transformation to climate-neutral transportation. According to the OEMs, the agreement lays the foundation of a future joint venture (JV), equally owned by the three parties, planning to start operations in 2022.

The parties intend to invest together 500 million Euros to install and operate at least 1,700 high-performance green energy charging points close to highways as well as at logistic and destination points, within five years from the establishment of the JV. The number of charging points is with time intended to be increased significantly by seeking additional partners as well as public funding. The future JV is planned to operate under its own corporate identity and be based in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The future JV will be able to build on the broad experience and knowledge of its founding partners in heavy-duty trucking, the companies say.

[RELATED: Could a similar partnership exist in North America? It will depend on what happens on infrastructure]

The OEMs also note future JV will act as catalyst and enabler for realizing the European Union’s Green Deal for a carbon-neutral freight transportation by 2050, both by providing the necessary infrastructure and targeting for green energy at the charging points. The joint action of Volvo Group, Daimler Truck and the Traton Group addresses the urgent need for a high-performance charging network to support truck operators with their transition to CO2-neutral transport solutions, especially in heavy-duty long-distance trucking. High-performance charging infrastructure enabling long-haul trucking is a cost-efficient way towards significant, fast-to-realize emission reductions.

"We are laying the necessary foundation in making a break-through for our customers to make the transformation to electrification by creating a European charging network leader," says Martin Lundstedt, president and CEO, Volvo Group.

Adds Daimler CEO Martin Daum, "It is the joint aim of Europe’s truck manufacturers to achieve climate neutrality by 2050. However, it is vital that building up the right infrastructure goes hand in hand with putting CO2-neutral trucks on the road."

Matthias Gründler, CEO at Traton, also notes "the future of transport is electric ... We are now moving forward together with our partners Daimler Truck and Volvo Group to make this high-performance network a reality as quickly as possible."

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