The Swedish government announced Wednesday its plan to bring back a climate bonus aimed at motivating people to buy or lease electric vehicles. Under this initiative, individuals who scrap their older internal combustion engine or ICE vehicles and opt for electric cars would become eligible for financial incentives.
The government has allocated an annual budget of SEK 250 million for 2024 and 2025 to support this initiative. The ultimate goal is to gradually phase out older ICE vehicles from the country’s roadways.
During a press conference, Climate and Environment Minister Romina Pourmokhtari underscored that this incentive would be a “temporary scrapping premium” applicable for 2024 and 2025. She said that specific details regarding the premium’s precise amount would be disclosed following discussions with the European Union to ensure alignment with EU regulations.
In addition, the government has allocated SEK 1.3 billion until 2024 to ensure that people entitled to the previous climate bonus, particularly those who purchased electric cars or plug-in hybrids before November 8, 2022, receive their entitled incentives.
Pourmokhtari also pointed out that in the first half of 2023, almost 60 percent of newly registered vehicles in Sweden were electric cars and plug-in hybrids.
“So now there are over half a million rechargeable vehicles in Sweden. The support for this market introduction has had a good effect,” she said.
Sweden’s Investment in EV Charging Infrastructure
Alongside the scrapping premium, the government is also investing more money to speed up the growth of charging stations across Sweden, both for regular cars and heavy vehicles.
Energy and Industry Minister Ebba Busch stressed the importance of moving away from fossil fuels and reducing transportation costs for households.
“We need to replace fossil transport and reduce household transport costs. This is of the utmost importance for Sweden’s competitiveness and the green transition,” said Busch.
The Swedish government also highlights the need for better access to charging stations all over the country, whether in a rural area or a big city. The goal is to make it easy for EV owners to charge their vehicles near their homes and workplaces, no matter where they live.
For this matter, the government has allocated substantial funds to support the nation’s charging infrastructure in the latest budget bill. This includes an investment of SEK 450 million for 2025 and SEK 620 million for 2026.
When combined with previous allocations, the total budget for the period from 2024 to 2026 stands at SEK 2.5 billion. An allocation of SEK 8 million has also been made to enhance the coordination efforts of the Energy Agency in guiding the expansion of charging infrastructure.
Back in 2023, the government showed its support for Charging Infrastructure for Electrified Transport 2030 by increasing the grant by SEK 90 million, bringing the total to one billion SEK. Swedish’s environmental initiative Klimatklivet also received an injection of SEK 400 million to fuel further investments in charging infrastructure.
Looking ahead to 2024, the government plans to extend and reinforce its support for charging infrastructure, committing just over SEK 2.5 billion for the period from 2024 to 2026. In addition, the Climate Step program will see an infusion of SEK 800 million.
These investments align with the EU’s Fit For 55 initiative, which includes sweeping measures to curtail the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles and ensure the widespread availability of charging infrastructure.
“Fit for 55 will mean that we include a new emissions trading system for road transport. No emissions will be allowed from new manufacturer light vehicles from 2035,” said Busch.
“It will also require charging stations every 6 miles on major main roads, i.e. motorways. This really gives our entire continent an opportunity to realign.”
She also noted that over four billion SEK will be invested in climate and environmental measures in the budget.
However, despite the government’s ambitious electrification targets, they also announced the decision to reduce petrol taxes.
“We need to continue to pave the way for Swedish households to be able to take that step that the next car they buy should be a plug-in hybrid, or even better, a purely electric car. That is the way forward,” said Busch.
“We should facilitate that, but we don’t do it here and now in a very tough financial situation where many households where many families turn over all their pennies every month.”
Volvo Celebrates 30th Anniversary of Volvo FH Trucks
Sweden has been making significant strides in the adoption of electric vehicles. One notable success story in this journey is the Swedish automaker Volvo. Recently, Volvo celebrated the 30th anniversary of its iconic Volvo FH truck, which has arguably become one of the most successful models in the global market.
Over these three decades, nearly 1.4 million Volvo trucks have been sold in approximately 80 markets. When the Volvo FH model first graced the scene, it heralded a new era in trucking. Volvo proudly proclaims the Volvo FH as an iconic symbol.
“The Volvo FH is the perfect example of a customer-focused mindset and a truck model that has been pushing the boundaries for 30 years,” said Roger Alm, CEO of Volvo Trucks.
“In all important areas such as driver comfort, fuel efficiency, safety and productivity, we have never stopped improving this truck. I am very proud that our customers can today order Volvo FH with electric, gas and diesel engines.”
The FH series was introduced with a brand-new chassis and versatile framework suitable for various transportation needs. The newly developed powertrain featured a groundbreaking 12-liter engine (16-liter for the Volvo FH16). The newly designed cab also brought substantial improvements in terms of aerodynamics and driver comfort.
Over the years, Volvo has included innovations like the driver’s airbag, the I-Shift automatic transmission and Volvo Dynamic Steering, which enhances steering and maneuverability.
The flagship model, the Volvo FH16, boasts a 16-liter engine that delivers 750 horsepower. It is also available in the electric variant, featuring 666 horsepower and a range of 30 miles.
Scania’s New Battery Assembly Plant
Scania, a Swedish company under Traton, has also officially inaugurated a battery assembly plant right next to its chassis production facility in Södertälje, Sweden. This move allows them to make a lot of premium electric trucks more easily.
Starting from September 5, Scania has been putting together battery cells made by Northvolt in Skellefteå. These battery cells have been tailor-made to meet Scania’s high standards. It features a prismatic design with a nominal voltage of 3.6 volts and a robust capacity of 157 Ah.
What sets these durable electric truck cells apart is their longevity. Marcus Holm, the head of production and logistics at Scania, explained that these self-assembled batteries are built to last for 1.5 million kilometers—the equivalent of a truck’s entire lifespan.
“Being premium means that we deliver solutions that are both of the highest quality and sustainable,” said Holm.
Meanwhile, back in June 2022, Scania also launched a brand new battery lab in Södertälje. This lab, alongside the battery assembly plant, is set to play a crucial role in helping Scania achieve its ambitious goal of having 50 percent sales of its electric vehicles by 2030.