Volta Trucks, a leading start-up electric commercial vehicle manufacturer, has revealed the first running prototype chassis of the Volta Zero. The Zero is the world’s first purpose-built fully-electric 16-tonne commercial vehicle designed specifically for inner-city logistics.
This major milestone in the company’s journey has been achieved at an industry-leading pace. The first running Volta Zero prototype chassis has been designed and built using the proposed production specification frame and drivetrain components of the finished vehicle.
The prototype includes the high-voltage battery supplied by Proterra, and the compact eAxle, which features the integrated rear axle, electric motor and transmission unit inside the rear axle unit, is from Meritor. The Volta Zero will be Europe’s first commercial vehicle to use an innovative eAxle for increased efficiency and vehicle range.
The new prototype chassis adds the proposed production specification frame and drivetrain and will be able to drive at normal road speeds. The prototype chassis is due to start a comprehensive testing programme on proving grounds soon.
The production of a pilot fleet of vehicles is expected in late 2021, with full-scale production of customer-specification vehicles following at the end of 2022.
Essa Al-Saleh, Volta CEO, said: “The prototype will provide our designers and engineers with feedback and real-world data on the vehicle performance. The learning from the prototype will also feed into the pilot fleet vehicles that will support our customer’s understanding of the electrification of their fleets.
“In six months we have designed and developed a running prototype chassis, and 18 months from now, we will be building series production vehicles for our customers. This is what they need. This is the speed they need us to work at and this is what we’ll deliver.”