Company continues industry transformation with major investment in electric hauling solutions
VOLVO Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) are investing SEK360 million (c.£29 million) in the future of their articulated hauler production facility in Braås, Sweden, between now and 2027, in a clear signal of the company’s commitment to lead the transformation across all products toward a more sustainable construction future.
The facility in Braås, long recognized for its environmental credentials, specializes in the design and manufacture of articulated haulers for the global market. It recently produced a fossil-free machine – an A30G – which was the first in the world to be delivered to a customer.
The decision to invest in Braås was made by AB Volvo’s board of directors and means that the factory will be adapted over the coming years to enable it to produce a larger range of articulated haulers with different types of powertrain to reflect the shift in demand towards equipment with more sustainable power sources.
The investment will be used to extend production capacity at the 45,000 sq m site in southern Sweden to broaden the product range going forwards, with the addition of new buildings and production equipment. Volvo CE will also invest in automation and ergonomics to reduce the need for employees to engage in repetitive tasks and to create a safer work environment.
As well as constructing the world’s first articulated hauler made from fossil-free steel, engineers at Braås have also been instrumental in building the world’s first prototype articulated hauler powered by hydrogen fuel-cells – the concept Volvo HX04 – which is currently the focus of testing to develop future hydrogen solutions.
Braås is also leading the way in environmental protection and was the first facility of its kind in the construction industry to achieve carbon-neutral operation powered entirely by renewable energy. In 2018, the site also became a zero-landfill facility.
‘The transport and construction industry is undergoing a transformation with, among other things, an increasing number of electrified vehicles,’ said Braås site manager Jonas Lakhall. ‘This investment will enable us to adapt and extend our production facility so that we can offer a broader range of machines – with different powertrains – to our customers and help them meet their emission-reduction ambitions.
‘It is important for us to continue to be at the forefront and make clear decisions to meet our Science Based Target commitment to achieve net-zero value chain emissions by 2040. By adapting our production for electric machines, we are progressing along our electrification roadmap.’