Plans for formation of a joint venture that will develop an electric battery charging network that would be used for charging long haul trucks and buses were announced by three major European truck manufacturers – Daimler Trucks, AB Volvo and Traton,
According to analysts and transportation experts, one of the major hurdles for the mass adoption of electric powered vehicles is the lack of fast expansion of charging infrastructure in Europe and elsewhere. This situation has resulted in a so called range anxiety for owners of electric vehicle owners which is the fear of not getting access to enough charging points during a journey and thus the possibility of being stranded while making a trip.
“The key ingredient in the future rolling-out of electric vehicles will be the infrastructure. It will be the big bottleneck,” Martin Daum, chief executive of Daimler Trucks, to be spun off from Daimler later this year, said on the occasion.
The joint venture will see a total investment of 500 million euros ($593 million) which would be jointly invested by the three companies, which are all developing electric trucks and are otherwise competitors in this segment. According to the agreement of the deal, each of the companies will have equal share in the joint venture which is expected to start operations from 2022, the companies said.
“And thereafter we are very open in all directions to let other parties partner with us and actually bring equity into the joint venture,” Traton CEO Matthias Gruendler said. Once the joint venture has been set up, there will expectedly be a lot of outside interest in it, he added.
The joint venture has aimed to install and operate at least 1,700 charging points within a period of five years. The headquarters of the joint venture will be in Amsterdam and it will look out for more partners and public funding in the course of time.
Setting up of at least 50,000 high performing charging points by 2030 has been asked for of car companies by the European car industry association ACEA. In order to build a fully electrified infrastructure in Europe by 2050 will require approximately 10 billion euros, Gruendler said.
“In order to accelerate further, we need additional partners, additional networks and public funds,” AB Volvo CEO Martin Lundstedt said. “We will continue to be very fierce competitors. But we need a new platform to compete upon.”
(Adapted from MoneyControl.com)