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Volvo trucks first in world to use fossil-free steel

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — As the world’s first truck manufacturer to do so, Volvo is now introducing fossil-free steel in its trucks.

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The steel is produced by Swedish steel company SSAB and the electric Volvo trucks will be the first to include it.

The steel from SSAB is produced using a completely new technology, based on hydrogen. The result is a much lower climate impact than conventionally produced steel. Small-scale introduction of the steel in Volvo’s heavy electric trucks will begin in the third quarter of 2022.

“We will increase the use of fossil-free materials in all our trucks to make them net-zero not only in operation – but also when it comes to the materials they are built of,” said Jessica Sandström, senior vice president of product management, Volvo Trucks.

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The first steel produced with hydrogen will be used in the truck’s frame rails, the backbone of the truck upon which all other main components are mounted. As the availability of fossil-free steel increases, it will also be introduced in other parts of the truck.

Furthermore, up to 90% of a Volvo truck can be recycled and around 30% of the materials in a new Volvo truck come from recycled materials.

“We are continuously striving to further minimize our climate footprint. We are also moving towards greater circularity in both our operations and our trucks,” said Sandström.

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Volvo Group has been collaborating with SSAB on fossil-free steel since 2021. The first machine, a load carrier made of fossil-free steel, was showcased in October 2021. Fossil-free steel will be an important complement to the traditional and recycled steel used in Volvo’s trucks.

According to a news release from the company, Volvo Trucks is committed to the Paris agreement and to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in its value chain by 2040, at the latest.