Volta Trucks, a full-electric commercial vehicle manufacturer and services provider, has confirmed that its forthcoming 7.5- and 12-tonne variants have entered the engineering phase of development, with a single design concept selected.
The 7.5- and 12-tonne Volta Zeros have been designed by Volta Trucks’ partner Astheimer Design in Warwick, with the new full-electric vehicles bearing a resemblance to the 16-tonne vehicle, launched in September 2020.
The smaller models will carry over the principles of the cab and working environment for drivers, with its low, central seating position designed for increased visibility, as well as its enhanced safety features.
But the 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles are designed to fulfil different use cases to the existing 16-tonne Volta Zero. With the 7.5-tonne vehicle able to operate on Sundays in several European territories where the 16-tonne vehicle is currently excluded.
Volta added the ground-up development of the 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles will be undertaken at the same rapid pace that’s become a hallmark of Volta Trucks operations. Engineering of the vehicles has now started, and a pilot fleet of vehicles is expected to be launched for customer trials in 2023, with series production due to commence during 2024.
The 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles complete the initial Volta Zero product line up, as announced in the company’s Road to Zero Emissions strategy in May 2021. This will see full-electric trucks launched in the initial markets of Paris and London, followed soon afterwards in Milan, Madrid, the Rhine Ruhr region of Germany, and Randstad, Netherlands.
The forthcoming 7.5- and 12-tonne variants will also help production to accelerate from 14,000 units in 2024 to over 27,000 by 2025 and increasing in the years beyond.
Ian Collins, chief product officer of Volta Trucks, said: “The full-electric 16-tonne Volta Zero is our first vehicle and the heart of our brand. But when designing that truck, we knew that we’d need to scale the innovative packaging and cab concept to accommodate different size vehicles.
“Our customers tell us that they appreciate the safety and zero-emission operations offered by the 16-tonne Volta Zero, but also need those positive attributes in smaller 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles, and they need them quickly.
“Our creative partners at Astheimer have created an inspiring vehicle design that we’ve now started to engineer and bring to life. We’ve scaled up our research and development operations to ensure that we can deliver a portfolio of products to market, starting in a year’s time with the 16-tonne Volta Zero.”