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Traton, Mercedes and Volvo establish JV, the Ionity for electric trucks in Europe

In a few years, electric trucks will be able to travel long distances within the European territory. Manufacturers such as Volvo or Mercedes already have the first electric units carrying out logistics tasks, although at the moment the charging infrastructure greatly limits the margin of movement. These two companies, plus Traton, formerly known as Volkswagen Trucks, have signed a collaboration agreement to create JV, a company that will create and manage the largest charging network for electric trucks in Europe.

With the aim of reducing polluting gas emissions from logistics transport, the European Union wants a cleaner and more sustainable industrial fleet. In the market we already find units such as the Mercedes eActros or the Volvo FE range. In a few years more models with greater autonomy will be added to the commercial offer, as is the case of the eActros Long Haul with 500 kilometers of autonomy and a recharging power of 1 megawatt. To meet the needs of this fleet, JV was born, a shared company in the purest Ionity style.

A few years ago, the major electric car manufacturers in Europe joined forces to create a public charging network that allows electric car users to cover any trip without worrying about where or how to charge. JV was born with the same purpose, although the figures are very different than in the case of electric cars. The first published data leave the car network in its infancy. From the initial investment to the number of points and their power.

JV-Infrastructure-Cargo-Trucks
The public charging network for high-power electric trucks

As announced last year, the joint venture JV plans to install and operate at least 1,700 high-performance green energy charging points on and near motorways, as well as in logistics centers throughout Europe. The parties commit to investing €500 million in total, which is supposed to be by far the largest investment in charging infrastructure in the European heavy truck industry to date. The JV will provide high performance charging stations for all electric truck fleet operators.

At the moment, many more points of interest have not been detailed, although the figures for said network are expected to be impressive. With load capacities of up to 1 MW, the points will allow large autonomies to be recovered in just a few minutes, enough to comply with the mandatory breaks of their drivers. More information, including the corporate name of the charging network or the location of the first points, will be published starting next year.

All parties have been delighted with the agreement, and encourage other companies to join the party. Martin Daum, CEO of Daimler Truck commented: “We are very excited to start this new company together with our partners. It is crucial that we now take the initiative to build the much-needed charging network. Still, we call on the entire industry to join our effort. The number of charging points has to increase significantly as quickly as possible for long-distance electric trucks to be a viable solution for our customers.”

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