Volvo believes taking a life-cycle approach to batteries will help accelerate the adoption of zero-emissions vehicles, like this electric compact excavator and Volvo FE Electric truck. - Photo: Volvo Group

Volvo believes taking a life-cycle approach to batteries will help accelerate the adoption of zero-emissions vehicles, like this electric compact excavator and Volvo FE Electric truck.

Photo: Volvo Group

A new business unit called Volvo Energy will strengthen the Volvo Group’s business flow of batteries for electric vehicles over their life cycle, as well as working on charging infrastructure for battery-electric and fuel-cell electric vehicles, the Swedish commercial vehicle maker has announced.

Giving used batteries a second life in different applications will reduce the environmental impact from electric and hybrid electric commercial vehicles and machines, the company said.

“There is a great and growing interest for electric vehicles and machines among our customers,” said Martin Lundstedt, president and CEO of the Volvo Group. “This is of course very positive as it accelerates the transition towards more sustainable transport solutions. Our ambition is to offer our customers the most competitive solutions when it comes to electrification, including batteries and charging infrastructure. With Volvo Energy, we are taking a holistic view of the entire life cycle, which benefits both our customers’ business and society as a whole.”

The Volvo Group already offers electrified equipment ranging from city buses, to trucks for waste management, construction and urban distribution, to compact excavators and loaders. The roll-out of additional, electric vehicles and related services will continue at a high pace, it said, and later this year, it will also include heavy-duty trucks for regional transport or construction.

Volvo Energy will be a business area with full profit and loss responsibility. It will have both an internal role (providing batteries and charging solutions to the Volvo Group’s other business areas), and an external role: offering used, remanufactured, and refurbished batteries to customers for use across different applications.

Volvo Energy will also carry the Group’s responsibility for hydrogen infrastructure solutions for fuel cell electric vehicles. Collaborations with various business partners and actors across the ecosystem will be key to its success, Volvo said.

Commercial vehicle batteries will be used for many years in the vehicle before they need to be replaced or remanufactured/refurbished. However, if completely new batteries are fitted to the vehicle, the used ones will generally still have considerable life left to offer, which makes them ideal for energy storage purposes, Volvo said, for example in buildings or in green energy production. Repurposing these batteries means natural resources are conserved.

Joachim Rosenberg, member of the Volvo Group Executive Board and Chairman of UD Trucks, will head the new business area. Starting in February, he will lead the effort to create Volvo Energy while also continuing to run UD Trucks and preparing the transfer of UD Trucks ownership to Isuzu Motors as part of the previously communicated strategic alliance between the Volvo Group and Isuzu Motors.

The financial results for Volvo Energy will be reported as part of the Volvo Truck Group.

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