Volvo ditching diesel for electric, will launch line of compact electric excavators, wheel loaders
The diesel tank is running on empty for some of Volvo Construction Equipment’s compact equipment.
The Swedish manufacturer said Jan. 15 that it will launch a series of new electric machines to replace several excavators and wheel loaders currently in its lineup of compacts. The scale of the move into electric is an industry-first, though several other manufacturers have been dappling in electric and hybrid equipment for some time.
Volvo plans to introduce the new compact electric models — which include compact excavators from its EC15 to EC27 and compact wheel loaders from its L20 to L28 — at Bauma this April. They’ll be available to customers starting in 2020.
The company has been developing the technology for years and has shown off a number of concept machines.
“The technology we have been developing is now sufficiently robust and this, together with changes in customer behavior and a heightened regulatory environment, means that now is the right time to commit to electromobility in our compact equipment ranges in the future,” Melker Jernberg, president of Volvo CE, said in a statement.
The company noted that diesel combustion remains the best power source for larger equipment, but that electric propulsion and battery technology has proved well-suited for compacts.
Volvo provided few other details about the equipment, but said it would release further details in the lead-up to Bauma.