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Continued progress in hybrid technology

Hybrid technology is one of the most promising and competitive technologies for
commercial vehicles. The Volvo Group is a leading player in hybrid technology for
heavy-duty vehicles, with a unique solution that offers considerable fuel savings
while reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

The solution can be used for different Volvo Group prod-

ucts and applications, thus reducing production costs and
facilitating large-scale manufacturing. We have been dem-
onstrating vehicles based on our hybrid solution, including:

• city buses
• refuse collection trucks and distribution trucks
• wheel loaders.

World leader in hybrid buses

In recent years, the bus industry has moved towards more
efficient transport solutions with lower energy consumption
and a reduction of regulated emissions.
Environmental and cost benefits
Serial production of the Volvo Hybrid city bus and the
The Volvo Group is well positioned with a unique solution
Volvo Hybrid double-decker started in 2010. Significant fuel
for hybrid technology for heavy-duty vehicles. Hybrid tech-
savings of up to 37% make this bus a commercially viable
nology is best suited to urban operations since the most
option compared with many other hybrid technologies.
appropriate vehicles for hybrid drivelines are those operating
The technology functions equally well when there is
in continuous stop-go conditions, such as city buses and
greater distance between bus stops, not just in highly con-
refuse or distribution trucks.
gested traffic situations. The diesel engine does not start
Fuel accounts for approximately one third of the costs of
until the bus reaches 15–20 km/hour, which ensures a
a truck in Europe. The potential for fuel savings means
quiet and exhaust-free environment at bus stops. In addi-
lower operating costs for our customers while also signifi-
tion, passenger capacity has increased compared with the
cantly reducing the environmental impact.
standard diesel bus.
We have tested various types of hybrid solutions since
the 1980s and unveiled the first commercially viable hybrid
solution for heavy-duty vehicles in 2006. The solution is Significant fuel savings of up to 37% make the Volvo
based on a unique Volvo Group concept known as I-SAM Hybrid city bus a commercially viable option compared
(Integrated Starter Alternator Motor). with many other hybrid technologies.

Because of its fuel saving potential, hybrid technology In 2011, Volvo Buses received its largest hybrid bus order
means lower operating costs for customers while at the to date, when the city of Curitiba in Brazil ordered 60
same time significantly reducing environmental impact. buses. A total of approximately 400 hybrid city buses have
been sold to customers.
Hybrid solution with proven track record
Next step in electrification
The Volvo Group’s I-SAM concept consists of an electric
Volvo Buses has also taken the next step in electrification
motor and a diesel engine working in parallel, whereby each
by commencing the development of a plug-in hybrid bus,
of them can be used where they are most effective. This
based essentially on the same technology.
increases the capacity compared with series hybrids, while
The plug-in hybrid, however, has a new type of battery
simultaneously reducing fuel consumption and improving
and charging equipment that will make it possible to charge
driving characteristics.
the battery via the electricity network. Simulations have


This document is a PDF-version of the Volvo Group’s CSR and Sustainability Report 2011. The complete report is available on www.volvogroup.com/responsibility.

showed a potential in decreasing energy consumption by burg Landvetter Airport. The vehicle was also tested by
up to 65% compared with today’s diesel buses. Field tests Renova, a company specialized in waste collection,
are expected to commence in 2012. processing and recycling.

Commercial hybrid trucks World’s largest electric truck tests for Carrefour
In 2011, Volvo Trucks commenced sales of heavy hybrid The fully electric Renault Midlum, a larger truck than Renault
trucks, under the name Volvo FE Hybrid, to customers in Maxity, was developed in close technological collaboration
selected European markets. The hybrid trucks permit fuel between Renault Trucks, PVI and IFP Energies Nouvelles.
savings of up to 30%. The truck is to be tested by logistics company STEF-TFE in
2012 supplying fresh products to Carrefour Group store
chains in the Lyon metropolitan area.
The 16 ton vehicle is the largest electric-powered truck to
be put on the road for delivering food products in an urban
environment. This distribution truck can carry 5.5 tons of
goods, has an operating range of 100 km and can be fully
recharged in only eight hours. This truck does not emit any
PM, NOX or CO2 and noise levels are low during operations
using electric-power.

Joint company for new energy driveline systems

In China there is a huge interest for alternative drivelines
and fuels. During World Expo in Shanghai 2010, Sunwin
Bus delivered new energy-efficient buses including a
number of electric buses.
In 2011, Volvo Buses and the Chinese company SAIC
Motors agreed to form a new joint-venture company for the
development of driveline systems for electric and hybrid
drive. The company will conduct research and development,
assemble new driveline systems and complete vehicle Low noise emissions
matching, prototype manufacturing and test new energy Noise is a growing problem in urban areas. Vehicles equipped
driveline systems. The new company will be based in with hybrid technology are almost silent when operating on
Shanghai, China, and operated by Sunwin Bus. the electric engine.
There are different regulations around the world for noise
Serial production of Renault’s hybrid for the transport sector. The EU and South Korea have among
During the year, Renault Trucks delivered its first Renault the strictest noise level regulations: 80 decibels for heavy-
Premium Hybrys-Tech truck assembled in serial production duty vehicles. Other countries are gradually approaching
to important logistics companies. In 2007, Renault Trucks the same level. The Volvo Group’s products meet these
introduced the Hybris, an innovative urban concept vehicle regulations.
powered by parallel hybrid technology (i.e. an internal com-
bustion engine and an electric motor drive the wheels in Noise emission requirements for heavy-duty vehicles
different distribution configurations). The technology has
the potential to cut fuel consumption and reduce CO2 emis- dB (A) China
88 USA (different test method)
sions from the truck by up to 30%. Australia (>320 kW: +3dB)
Japan (different test method)
Renault Maxity Electric: a fully electric truck India
Renault Trucks has developed a fully electric truck offering, 84

in partnership with electric commercial vehicle manufacturer 82

PVI. This vehicle emits no particulate matters, nitrogen
oxides or carbon dioxides when operating on electricity. It 80

emits very low noise levels. Renault Maxity Electric can 78

therefore be operated at night and in restricted low-emission 2000 2002 2004 2006 208 2010 2012

After successful tests under actual operating conditions,
Renault Trucks made its Renault Maxity Electric available
for long-term rental on the French market. A dozen of units Did you know?
are being operated since. In 2011, Swedavia, Sweden’s In 2011, Volvo Buses received its largest hybrid bus order
largest airport operator, also tried the Maxity Electric, using to date, when the city of Curitiba in Brazil ordered 60
it to collect small, recyclable items of waste at the Gothen- buses.


This document is a PDF-version of the Volvo Group’s CSR and Sustainability Report 2011. The complete report is available on www.volvogroup.com/responsibility.