Volvo Trucks gets largest VNR Electric order

By Mike Brezonick13 April 2021

Volvo VNR Electric Quality Custom Distribution (QCD) will deploy 14 Volvo VNR Electric models in its Southern California last-mile delivery routes by the end of 2022. The trucks represent the largest single purchasing commitment of Volvo VNR Electric trucks to date.

Volvo Trucks North America announced that Quality Custom Distribution (QCD), a national food service logistics supplier, will deploy 14 Volvo VNR Electric models in its Southern California last-mile delivery routes over the next two years. The trucks, manufactured at Volvo Trucks’ New River Valley plant in Virginia, represent the largest single purchasing commitment of Volvo VNR Electric trucks to date.

Volvo Trucks said it will begin delivering the Class 8 electric trucks to QCD this fall to operate out of its distribution center in Fontana, Calif.

“Earlier this month, we delivered QCD’s first VNR Electric to be used in its first-class distribution and logistics services,” said Peter Voorhoeve, president, Volvo Trucks North America. “With this exceptional commitment to deploy an additional 14 Volvo VNR Electric trucks, we are pleased that QCD has chosen to continue its longtime partnership with our organization to achieve its sustainable freight transportation goals.”

Built for local and regional distribution

The Volvo VNR Electric is designed for customer applications and driving cycles with local and regional distribution ranges, including food and beverage and pick-up and delivery routes. It is available in three configurations, a single-axle straight truck with a gross vehicle weight rating of 33,200 lb. and two tractor configurations – 4x2 with a 66,000 lb. gross combination weight rating (GCWR) and 6x2 with up to an 82,000 lb. GCWR in specific applications.

The electric driveline is a fully integrated, Volvo proprietary solution, rated 339 kW (455 hp) and generating up to 4051 lb.ft. of torque. The truck incorporates a two-speed Volvo I-Shift transmission designed to deliver smooth and efficient acceleration with excellent startability and low-speed maneuverability, Volvo said.

The truck incorporates lithium-ion batteries with a capacity of 264 kWh, which provide the vehicle an operating range of up to 150 miles based on the configuration. The batteries can be charged up to 80% within 70 minutes, Volvo said, and regenerative braking can increase range by returning power up to 15% back into the battery, depending on the duty cycle.

The VNR Electric also include Volvo Trucks’ onboard telematics including Remote Diagnostics and a new real-time battery monitoring service from the Volvo Trucks Uptime Center.

Funding assistance

The 14 leased Volvo VNR Electric trucks and supporting charging equipment are assisted with funding by a $3.9 million grant awarded to Volvo Financial Services (VFS) from the Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee’s (MSRC) Inland Port Program. Combined with MSRC grant funds, the VFS leases provided through the program will reduce QCD’s total cost of operating the electric vehicles, making the trucks cost-competitive with existing diesel technology. The MSRC is a committee of California’s largest transportation and clean air agencies and stakeholders.

Volvo VNR Electric Charging Along with project partners Volvo Trucks North America, VFS, and QCD, charging infrastructure provider Greenlots will design and install eight high-power charging stations at QCD’s Fontana distribution center to power the Volvo VNR Electric trucks.

Through the Volvo LIGHTS project, QCD recently took delivery of its first Volvo VNR Electric. With this additional order, QCD’s total fleet of VNR Electric trucks will reach 15 by the end of 2022. QCD, a Golden State Foods (GSF) company, provides custom distribution services to thousands of America’s most iconic restaurants and currently operates a fleet of 700 Class 8 tractors, more than half of which are Volvo VNR and VNL models.

“The experience gained from this program will help accelerate battery-electric truck adoption in QCD’s fleet, as well as other last-mile delivery fleets,” said Mike Douglas, senior director of strategic procurement, QCD. “We are excited to partner with Volvo Trucks and VFS to put these VNR Electrics to work and begin reducing emissions throughout the region.”

More than 100 electric trucks

Volvo Trucks North America began taking customer orders for its VNR Electric model last December and has multiple customer deliveries scheduled throughout 2021. With this purchase from QCD, Volvo Trucks said it now has orders for more than 100 VNR Electric models scheduled to be delivered and deployed in fleet operations throughout California over the next two years.

Delivered by Volvo Trucks’ dealership Gateway Truck & Refrigeration, QCD’s 14 Volvo VNR Electric trucks will be operating various delivery distribution routes within Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.

Along with project partners Volvo Trucks North America, VFS and QCD, electric vehicle charging infrastructure provider Greenlots will design and install eight high-power charging stations at QCD’s Fontana distribution center to power the electric trucks. Learnings from the deployment of the first VNR Electric model and charging infrastructure will provide QCD the valuable information needed to expand its fleet of zero-emission trucks.

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