DHL Supply Chain Launches its First Australian EV Truck

In News, Volvo3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineSeptember 22, 2023

DHL Supply Chain has taken the first Australian delivery of Volvo FL Electric with second-generation battery packs.

The updated battery packs provide an increase in range over the previous range of FL Electric.

Based at DHL’s western Sydney supply chain campus, the medium-duty Volvo FL begins the fulfilment of DHL Supply Chain’s efforts in Australia to help achieve the Group’s target of 60% electric vehicles in its last-mile fleet by 2030.

Dispensing with internal combustion power, the Volvo FL combines a 600-volt motor with a two-speed transmission to deliver a 5500kg payload. Four 66kWh Gen 2 battery packs provide power with charging times dependent on the duty cycle and chargers used.  A regenerative braking system and transmission tops up the FL’s batteries every time it decelerates.

Fitted with a tautliner van body capable of carrying eight full-sized pallets, the Volvo FL uses its 300-kilometre range to service various DHL Supply Chain customers.

The Volvo FL’s battery-electric drivetrain emits no harmful particulate matter into the atmosphere and improves the amenity of the areas it travels through with significantly reduced noise levels.

“Globally, DHL Supply Chain has a strong understanding of the climate crisis and a head-start in reducing the environmental impact of its operations,” said DHL Supply Chain CEO, Steve Thompsett.

“Updating our fleet to zero emissions vehicles is a priority in Australia and it combines well with the measures we’re taking to reduce our carbon footprint across our operations,” he said.

“The breadth of DHL Supply Chain’s global footprint means that our company has already trialled and rolled out Volvo’s electric truck offerings in Europe, meaning that we could forgo an Australian trial and go straight to investing in these climate-benefitting vehicles.”

DHL Supply Chain senior vice president of transport, Bill Rolfe, said the company’s launch of the Volvo FL Electric is in line with the company’s aim of continual improvement.

“The addition of Volvo FL electric trucks is a simple way for us to transition to battery-electric technology, with a useful driving range, proven reliability and an intuitive driving experience that will resonate with our staff,” he said.

Volvo Trucks vice president, Gary Bone, added he is pleased to see DHL Supply Chain take delivery of the Volvo FL.

“As well as being nimble, safe and a comfortable place for DHL Supply Chain staff to work, the Volvo FL delivers tangible benefits to the climate, as well as everybody who lives and works in the areas in which they operate,” he said.

“Drivers feedback on these trucks is overwhelmingly positive in terms of comfort and ergonomics and reduced fatigue levels.”