First green steel trucks going to hit roads this year
As the world’s first truck manufacturer to do so, Volvo is introducing fossil-free steel in its trucks. The steel is produced by the Swedish steel company SSAB and the heavy-duty electric Volvo trucks will be the first to include it.
The steel from SSAB is produced using a completely new technology, based on hydrogen. The result is a much lower climate impact than conventionally produced steel. Small scale introduction of the steel in Volvo’s heavy electric trucks will begin in the third quarter of 2022.
“We will increase the use of fossil-free materials in all our trucks to make them net-zero not only in operation – but also when it comes to the materials they are built of”Jessica Sandström, Senior Vice President Product Management, Volvo Trucks.
The first steel produced with hydrogen will be used in the truck’s frame rails, the backbone of the truck upon which all other main components are mounted. As the availability of fossil-free steel increases, it will also be introduced in other parts of the truck.
90% of a Volvo truck can be recycled
Today, around 30% of the materials in a new Volvo truck come from recycled materials. And up to 90% of the truck can be recycled at the end of its life.
“We are continuously striving to further minimize our climate footprint. We are also moving towards greater circularity in both our operations and our trucks”Jessica Sandström
Volvo Group is collaborating with SSAB on fossil-free steel since 2021. The first machine, a load carrier made of fossil-free steel, was showcased in October 2021. Fossil-free steel will be an important complement to the traditional and recycled steel used in Volvo’s trucks.
Volvo Trucks is committed to the Paris agreement and to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in the value-chain by 2040, at the latest.
SSAB steel to heavy machinery
“The green transition of heavy transport is key for the world to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, not only by lowering tail-pipe emissions but also by including fossil-free steel as a material in the vehicles. We are proud to work together with a forerunner like Volvo Trucks and will gradually continue to build complete fossil-free value chains with our customers”Olavi Huhtala, Head of SSAB Europe
SSAB aims to offer fossil-free steel on an industrial scale to the market already in 2026 and plans to largely eliminate carbon dioxide emissions from its own operations in around 2030. Together with partners and customers, SSAB aims to create complete fossil-free value chains, from the mine to the end-product.
The tragic situation in Ukraine affected the first quarter of 2022 in many ways. SSAB directly ceased sales to Russia and Belarus and discontinued new purchases of ore and coal from Russia until further notice. Several measures have been introduced to ensure access to raw materials, but there is a risk of disruptions related to sanctions and other fallout from the war in Ukraine. The war has driven up both raw material and steel prices. Order intake rose temporarily during the first quarter since the customers wanted to ensure supply of steel.
The outlook for demand and shipments in the second quarter is characterized by some uncertainty, including further issues with component supplies in the vehicle industry as well as bottlenecks continuing to affect logistics chains.