Volta is growing its line-up of Zero electric delivery trucks by adding 7.5-ton and 12-ton models to the mix. The new trucks are designed with maneuverability in mind, with both options aiming to make it easier for drivers to maneuver these commercial vehicles in more dense urban areas.
With these new options, Volta's Zero line includes a total of four models—all of which are designed for urban freight movement. The original model is a 16-ton truck that uses either a standard—150-kWh—or high-capacity—225-kWh—battery pack (we suspect both figures reflect the packs' maximum, rather than useable, capacity) to achieve a manufacturer-estimated driving range of 90 or 125 miles, respectively. Customers are due to start testing the 16-ton electric vehicle later this year. Volta also previously announced an 18-ton model that's due to start production sometime in the middle of 2023.
Volta is a Swedish company with a focus on the European market, a region with consumers who are interested in more compact commercial EV options. The Zero 7.5- and 12-ton trucks ought to appeal to such buyers. Customer trials for the newly announced models are set to kick off in 2024, with full-line production planned for early 2025.
Volta notes the new 7.5- and 12-ton trucks share a “close but evolutionary visual relationship” with the brand's larger 16- and 18-ton models. Like those electric trucks, the smaller Volta Zero EVs feature airy, glasshouse-style cabs and a seating position that's lower than comparable trucks with internal combustion engines.
The original Zero truck was designed to make the driver’s perspective more street-level, with an eyesight level of around under six feet. To further help the driver better see the road around them, Volta fits its Zero trucks with cameras in place of side mirrors, while the glass-heavy cab offers the driver a forward field of view of 220 degrees. Arguably the most noticeable difference between these smaller Zero trucks and their larger kin is the fact the new models do without a third axle.
In February, Volta announced it raised $260 million in a Series C funding round, bringing its total funding to around $316 million. Volta said it has already received customer orders for more than 6,000 vehicles, including “Europe’s largest purchase of full-electric trucks”, thanks to an order of 1,470 vehicles by DB Schenker. Petit Forestier has also ordered 1,000 Volta Zeros. Volta plans to build 5,000 trucks per year starting in 2023 at a plant in Steyr, Austria. By 2025, Volta’s annual production capacity is due to increase to 27,000 vehicles.