In an effort to combat climate change and decarbonize road-freight transportation, the European Union, including Sweden, has set an ambitious target of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 under the European Climate Law.

To facilitate the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) and reduce the carbon footprint of the transportation sector, the European Commission has proposed an important update to the EU’s CO2 regulations for trucks and buses.

Under these proposed regulations, nearly all new trucks and coaches will be required to slash their CO2 emissions by a remarkable 90 percent by 2040. A more immediate goal mandates that 100 percent of city buses must transition to zero-emission vehicles by 2030.

Notably, electric city buses have been a standout in this transition, witnessing an impressive surge in market share. According to reports, these electric buses have become the driving force behind the sector’s progress toward achieving the proposed 2030 target.

However, the story is a bit different for trucks, especially the heavy ones. In 2022, around 260,000 heavy trucks were sold in Europe, but only slightly more than 700 were electric, with Sweden accounting for 154 of these sales.

While there is a substantial growth compared to 2021, the number of electric trucks on the road still constitutes a relatively small percentage of the total registered trucks. Sweden, along with Germany and the Netherlands, played a crucial role in electric truck sales in 2022, collectively accounting for approximately 65 percent of the market share.

Key Drivers of Electric Truck Adoption

The surge in electric truck adoption can be attributed to several critical factors propelling them into the mainstream. Research by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) showed that, without additional policy support, electric trucks could become cheaper to own and operate than their diesel counterparts in Europe before 2030.

Another critical enabler is the widespread availability of charging infrastructure. For fleets engaged in urban and regional deliveries, private depot chargers can handle a significant portion of their energy needs. Long-haul operators, however, will require high-power en-route chargers.

Fortunately, the recently enacted Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR) has addressed this need. Experts estimate that AFIR will cater to approximately three-quarters of the charging requirements of electric trucks by 2030. This regulatory framework is expected to incentivize market forces to bridge any remaining gaps in charging infrastructure.

In order to ensure a steady supply of electric trucks, experts highlighted the need for CO2 standards for trucks. Truck manufacturers revealed that by 2030, electric trucks are projected to achieve a market share of 60 percent as the sector aimed for complete fossil-fuel independence.

However, the industry now requires a level of regulatory playing field to stimulate competition and expedite progress. The finalization of ongoing legislative processes before the European elections in 2024 is seen as crucial in providing regulatory certainty, enabling companies to plan their development cycles and make long-term investments to meet the 2040 CO2 targets.

The widespread adoption of electric trucks hinges on the alignment of cohesive regulatory actions and industry commitment. As these essential components come together, experts also anticipate a gradual increase in electric truck volumes.

Swedish Volvo Group’s Electric Truck Leads The Market

According to the data by manufacturer, the Sweden-based Volvo Group, with its brands Volvo Trucks and Renault Trucks, emerged as the dominant market leader, responsible for approximately 55 percent of electric trucks on European roads. The company has made the transition to zero-emission trucks a central element of its corporate strategy.

Recently, Volvo has started a series production of electric trucks at its Ghent plant in Belgium. The production will focus on three heavy-duty electric models — FH Electric, FM Electric, and FMX Electric, capable of handling a total weight of up to 44 tonnes.

Ghent marks the fourth Volvo Trucks facility to join the production of battery-electric trucks, further demonstrating the company’s commitment to sustainable transportation. The plant also stands as Volvo Trucks’ largest manufacturing site, boasting an annual capacity of around 45,000 trucks.

Last year, series production of the FH Electric, FM Electric and FMX Electric models commenced in Gothenburg, Sweden.

These models will be produced alongside their combustion counterparts, following a production concept already established in Gothenburg. The batteries needed for these electric trucks will also be supplied by the adjacent battery assembly plant located in Ghent.

These electric trucks are part of what Volvo Trucks deems its “most important product range.” These three models collectively accounted for approximately two-thirds of the company’s sales, as reported in a previous statement.

Orders for these electric models have been accepted since May 2022. In total, Volvo Trucks has introduced six series-produced electric truck models, with the other three being electric versions of the Volvo FE and Volvo FL medium-duty truck models, as well as the VNR designed for North America.

Repurposing Volvo EV Batteries

Regarding the waste in the electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem, Volvo Energy has partnered with UK battery storage firm Connected Energy through a letter of intent to repurpose used Volvo EV batteries for new battery storage applications.

The joint venture between these companies aims to develop a battery energy storage system utilizing batteries recovered from Volvo’s electric buses, trucks, and machinery. Reviving these batteries for a second purpose can lead to substantial environmental and economic benefits.

Typically, electric vehicle (EV) batteries retain up to 80 percent of their original energy storage capacity even when they are no longer optimal for EV use. Connected Energy specializes in giving these batteries a second life.

“In the coming years, the volumes of returning batteries from first-life applications will substantially increase. This represents a key opportunity for original equipment manufacturers like Volvo Group,” said Matthew Lumsden, CEO of Connected Energy.

“Together, we have the potential to develop and commercialize second-life energy storage systems that make EVs even more sustainable.”

In June 2022, Volvo Group contributed £4 million as one of the investors when Connected Energy secured £15 million in investments. Last year, the Group joined other new investors in Connected Energy, including companies like Caterpillar and the energy firm Mercuria.

Connected Energy’s E-STOR system is already in use across the UK and Europe, supporting EV charging, backup power for microgrids, and renewable energy initiatives. As part of the collaborative effort, Volvo Energy has installed an E-STOR system at its facility in Gothenburg, Sweden. This installation serves as a testbed to assess the system’s response to the Swedish grid.

The partnership anticipates beginning the development of the first prototype battery storage system using Volvo EV batteries later this year. The goal is to launch these systems commercially in Europe in early 2025, contributing to the repurposing and sustainability of EV batteries.


The Volvo Group is a Swedish multinational manufacturing corporation headquartered in Gothenburg. While its core activity is the production, distribution and sale of trucks, (wikipedia)


Danfoss is a Danish multinational company, based in Denmark, with more than 41,928 employees globally. Danfoss was founded in 1933 by engineer Mads Clausen. (wikipedia)