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Volvo is building a line of electric commercial semi trucks

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Image: Volvo

Volvo has announced its first all-electric commercial truck, called the FL Electric, as reported by Autoblog. Manufacturing and sales of the truck, meant for urban distribution and waste management, should begin in Europe next year.

The trucks can accommodate between two and six lithium-ion batteries with 100–300kWh, giving a range of up to 300 km (approximately 186 miles). It will be able to fast charge in one to two hours via DC or overnight with AC. Aside from green perks, Volvo says these trucks will also help companies be more efficient. They can be used in indoor terminals and environmental zones. Because the trucks are much quieter than their diesel counterparts, they can also theoretically be used at night in populated areas without bothering people.

Volvo is looking to take “a holistic view of electrification” when it comes to the vehicles, taking into consideration, for example, how the raw materials for the batteries are extracted. The company says the first two FL Electric trucks are entering regular operation in Gothenburg, Sweden, operated by refuse collection and recycling company Renova and haulage firm TGM.

This isn’t Volvo’s first foray into electric vehicles. Last year, the company spun off its Polestar performance sub-brand into its own marque, introducing the Polestar 1 coupe in October. The FL Electric is also certainly not the market’s first electric commercial truck announcement. Tesla’s electric Semi (expected to be in production in 2019) will have a range of 500 miles and some self-driving capabilities, UPS is partnering with Workhorse Group Inc to build its own fleet of electric trucks with a range of 100 miles, and startup Thor Trucks is aiming to convert fossil fuel-burning trucks into battery-electric ones.