Added investment to expand Volvo CE efforts towards electric hauling solutions
An investment of approximately $32.7 million into one of its Swedish production facilities is one more step in Volvo Construction Equipment's efforts towards sustainable solutions for the construction sector.
The investment of SEK 360 million into its Braås, Sweden facility will take place between now and 2027, and focus on broadening the company's efforts to develop different powertrains for the growing range of customer needs in the construction sector.
Braås specializes in design and manufacturing of articulated haulers, and has been busy in developing environmentally conscious machines previously. It recently produced a fossil-free A30G hauler which became the first in the world to be delivered to a customer and is now working on NCC worksites. With the new funding in place, the facility will be updated, allowing it to produce a larger range of articulated haulers with different types of powertrain, reflecting the shift in demand towards equipment with more sustainable power sources.
"The transport and construction industry is undergoing a transformation with, among other things, an increasing number of electrified vehicles," says Jonas Lakhall, site manager at Volvo CE in Braås. "This investment will enable us to adapt and extend our production facility so that we can offer a broader range of machines - with different powertrains - to our customers and help them meet their emission reduction ambitions.
"It is important for us to continue to be at the forefront and make clear decisions to meet our Science Based Target commitment to achieve net zero value chain emissions by 2040. By adapting our production for electric machines, we are progressing along our electrification roadmap."
Braås has been central to development of innovative equipment since it produced the world's first series manufactured articulated hauler, the "Gravel Charlie," a 10-ton hauler, in 1966.
That innovation has included the largest articulated hauler in the world, the 60-ton class A60H, as well as the world's first articulated hauler made from fossil-free steel. Engineers at this facility were also instrumental in the building of the world's first prototype articulated hauler powered by hydrogen fuel cells - the concept Volvo HX04 - which is currently the focus of testing to develop future hydrogen solutions.
The Braås factory was the first in the construction industry to achieve carbon neutral operation powered entirely by renewable energy, Volvo states, and in 2018 it also became a zero-landfill facility.
Production capacity at the 45,000-metre-square site will be increased with new buildings and production equipment, along with investment in automation and ergonomics to reduce the need for employees to engage in repetitive tasks as well as create a safer work environment.