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Innovative electric truck for parcel delivery unveiled

04 November 2020

START-UP ELECTRIC vehicle manufacturer Volta Trucks has revealed the new Volta Zero – said to be the world’s first purpose-built full-electric 16-tonne commercial vehicle designed for inner-city parcel and freight distribution.

The Volta Zero will start undertaking operator trials with some of Europe’s largest parcel delivery and logistics companies in H1-2021. Orders have already been taken from companies wanting to secure the first customer-specification vehicles, which are due to be delivered when production starts in 2022. 

The removal of the traditional internal combustion engine enabled the designers and engineers of the Volta Zero to rethink how a truck has been designed. The driver of a Volta Zero has a wide 220-degrees of direct vision around the vehicle. This panoramic view of the surroundings through a glasshouse-style cab is designed to deliver a Transport for London five-star Direct Vision Standard rating for optimum visibility and the reduction of blind spots. The protection of vulnerable road users is also enhanced by the use of rear-view cameras that replace traditional mirrors, a 360-degree birds-eye camera showing the driver their complete surroundings, and blind-sport warning systems that detect objects down the sides of the vehicle. 

The driver of a Volta Zero sits far lower than in a conventional truck, with their eye-line at around 1.8 metres. This mirrors the height of pedestrians and other road users nearby for easy visual communication between the driver and others around. 

The Volta Zero will be the first road vehicle to use a sustainably sourced natural Flax material and biodegradable resin in the construction of exterior body panels, with the cab’s dark body panels and many interior trims constructed from the natural material.

The Volta Zero will use an e-Axle to drive the rear wheels, rather than the conventional electric motor and driveshaft set up used by the small number of other electric truck manufacturers. The single electric motor, transmission, and axle of the Volta Zero are contained in a e-Axle unit that’s said to be lighter and more efficient, delivering an increased range as a result. It also provides packaging benefits by freeing up space between the chassis rails. This is where Volta Trucks fits the battery of the vehicle/

The Volta Zero offers a payload of 8,600kg, with an overall volume of 37.7 cu m and is designed to accommodate 16 Euro pallets. A refrigerated cargo box will also be available, without reducing overall volume as a result of the vehicle design. Volta Trucks is integrating the use of the vehicle’s battery for the cooling and refrigeration unit of the cargo box that's normally diesel-powered.

For more information, visit www.voltatrucks.com