Volvo Trucks delivers its first all-electric heavy-duty truck to the African continent.
The refuse collection vehicle has been delivered to a Moroccan company, Arma, in the city of Rabat and is the first BEV truck from a global manufacturer to be in commercial operation in Africa.
The automaker suggests that by replacing the existing Volvo FE diesel truck with a Volvo FE electric on a typical route, approximately 30 tons of CO2 could be saved every year.
There is a growing push to produce greener energy in Africa, especially solar. Morocco is a leader in solar power and home to the world’s biggest concentrated solar power facility, Noor Quarzazate, located 124 miles (200 km) southeast of Marrakech.
The Volvo FE Electric is one of six all-electric Volvo truck models already in production.
Martin Nilsson, managing director of Volvo Trucks Morocco, says: “This clearly shows that zero-emissions trucks have a role to play in many parts of the world. Volvo is the first global brand with heavy electric trucks in commercial operation in Africa. We have the broadest electric-truck lineup in the industry, which makes it possible to electrify a large part of heavy transports today.”
Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries are in urgent need of alternative energy sources for transport to stave off the growing burden of fuel dependency and subsidies, as well as an electricity storage solution to leverage their abundant renewable energy resources, according to Mordor Intelligence. Electric vehicles, powered by electricity and running on battery storage, offer a potential solution to both of these problems. Many SSA countries are expected to make large power capacity investments in the next decade.
Countries including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are becoming early adopters of BEVs in the Middle East. The Saudi Arabian Standards Organization has plans to issue regulations for the use of electric vehicles. The Road Transport Authority of the United Arab Emirates has issued advisory messages and worked to develop charging stations in the country.
Although the electric-vehicle market in the African region is in the nascent stage, Mordor notes, various key players are trying to establish new facilities for product development, increasing their presence in the market. For instance, in March 2022, Volvo Cars launched the Volvo XC40 Recharge. The XC40 Recharge has a total output of 402 hp (300 kW) and 487 lb.-ft. (660 Nm) of torque that accelerates from 0-97 mph (100 km/h) in 4.9 seconds. It has a 78-kWh battery capacity that promises a 260-mile (418-km) range on a single charge. BMW introduced the EX electric vehicle in Dubai in November 2021.
– with David Kiley