Volvo Trucks North America has delivered seven Volvo VNR Electric heavy-duty trucks to Ryder System to support local supply chain routes servicing the Volvo Group’s own truck assembly operations in Pennsylvania.
Ryder replaced the diesel trucks that were previously servicing the route and will operate the dedicated zero-tailpipe emissions Class 8 battery-electric trucks to support the Volvo Group’s sustainability goal of reducing CO2 from its global operations, according to a Dec. 7 release from Volvo.
“Volvo Trucks is committed to building a decarbonized future and working with supplier and carrier partners, such as Ryder, who are committed to sustainability,” said VTNA President Peter Voorhoeve. “One of our core company values is environmental stewardship, and by manufacturing and utilizing our own zero-tailpipe emission trucks, we are making good on our promise to lead the commercial transport industry toward more sustainable solutions by advancing electromobility.”
Volvo Financial Services worked with Ryder to place all seven of the VNR Electrics on five-year vehicle-as-a-service fair market value leases. The FMV lease model, which allows a fleet to lease a vehicle for a specified period, provides the option for Ryder to purchase the Volvo VNR Electrics at market cost at the end of the lease term, according to the Volvo release. Leasing helps lower the upfront investment and risk while fleets continue to gain experience with battery-electric trucks.
“Ryder has been a long-standing leader in integrating alternative fuel vehicles into our fleet with a goal of driving more sustainable solutions for our customers,” said Steve Sensing, Ryder president for supply chain solutions. “The work that Volvo Trucks has done to accelerate Class 8 battery-electric technology is impressive, with successful working fleets. We are excited for the opportunity to collaborate with an industry leader and get the hands-on experience with integrating the Volvo VNR Electric truck in our fleet.”
This month, Ryder began operating the VNR Electrics on two shifts completing up to eight round trips daily, with all seven trucks transporting assembly kits of components for heavy-duty trucks at a nearby kitting facility to the Mack Trucks Lehigh Valley Operations plant in Macungie, Pennsylvania. To charge the EVs, Ryder will utilize five mobile 50 kW chargers available at the plant, which will be replaced with six permanent chargers—five 100 kW chargers and one 150 kW charger—which are being installed.
Lehigh Valley is the second Volvo plant to deploy VNR Electric trucks to transport inbound parts and components daily, with New River Valley truck assembly operations in Dublin, Virginia, integrating the battery-electric model into its routes earlier this year. Five VNR Electrics are dedicated units for the New River Valley plant, with each truck running on two shifts for four to five round trips each day, averaging 8 miles per route, according to the Dec. 7 Volvo statement.
Volvo Trucks began taking commercial orders for its Volvo VNR Electric model in December 2020 and, in January 2022, announced its enhanced VNR Electric model, which features notable improvements in battery design and storage capacity, resulting in increased range and faster charging, with a dedicated battery thermal management system to maintain ideal environmental temperatures.