February 16, 2007 Volvo is to receive a SEK 9.8 million grant forom the Swedish Energy Agency in support of a hybrid technology development project for heavy vehicles. The project involves development and testing of hybrid technology in two garbage (refuse) collection trucks in Gothenburg and Stockholm. The aim of the project is to achieve fuel savings of up to 30%. Volvo has been working on research and development of hybrid technology for 20 years. Volvo’s tests and simulations show that hybrid drive for heavy vehicles is most suitable for vehicles forced during operations to make many starts and stops, such as buses, distribution trucks and refuse vehicles. In these cases, fuel savings can be up to 35%.
The project will be implemented in co-operation with two of Volvo’s major refuse collection customers. The vehicles are scheduled to be placed in operation in the beginning of 2008. Evaluation and testing will be carried out in cooperation with the customers during a three-year period. During the entire project, Volvo will further develop and optimize the technology for future series production. Volvo will also install and test a new safety system for vehicles in city traffic on both trucks.