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Volvo LIGHTS Lessons Learned Guidebook Highlights Key Learnings from Three-Year Fleet Electrification Project

Volvo Group North America has published a Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy-Transport Solutions) Lessons Learned Guidebook to commemorate the end of its innovative three-year project, which began in 2019 and concludes in early Fall 2022. The 22-page guidebook, Bringing Battery-Electric Freight Trucks to Market: From Demonstration to Commercialization, documents key insights gained as the project partners designed and implemented innovative programs and technologies critical for the widescale success of battery-electric freight movement. 

“By participating in the Volvo LIGHTS project, our team gained incredibly valuable experience that helped shape the comprehensive customer support model for our Volvo VNR Electric model, which was first commercialized in December 2020,” said Peter Voorhoeve, president, Volvo Trucks North America. “That said, we know that the transition away from diesel to electric power will involve far more than developing reliable truck technology. The Volvo LIGHTS project helped underscore the many areas in which public and private entities will need to collaborate to develop the ecosystem needed to support customers with successful battery-electric truck adoption – including the build out of public and private charging infrastructure, a robust dealer support network, incentives and strategies to reduce costs, a trained workforce of technicians, sales consultants, first responders, and more.”

The Volvo LIGHTS project, led by Volvo Group North America and South Coast Air Quality Management District (South Coast AQMD), is a public-private partnership between 14 organizations aimed at transforming freight movement. Supporting project partners include NFI Industries, Dependable Highway Express (DHE), TEC Equipment, Shell Recharge Solutions (formerly Greenlots), Port of Long Beach, Port of Los Angeles, Southern California Edison, CALSTART, the University of California, Riverside CE-CERT, Reach Out, Rio Hondo College, and San Bernardino Valley College. Each of the Volvo LIGHTS project partners played an integral role in helping transform goods movement, as they worked together to design a blueprint to introduce zero-tailpipe emission battery-electric trucks and equipment into the market at scale.

The Volvo LIGHTS Lessons Learned Guidebook, available for download from the project website at www.lightsproject.com, is organized into a series of short chapters:

  • Establishing new partnerships
  • Demonstrating Class 8 battery-electric vehicle innovations
  • Advancements in warehouse equipment
  • Reliable and cost-effective charging infrastructure
  • Strategies to reduce total cost of ownership
  • Cutting-edge job training needed
  • Robust sales and service support

“By publishing the Volvo LIGHTS Lessons Learned Guidebook, Volvo Group hopes to shine a light on the key considerations that public and private entities need to plan for to successfully support the introduction of heavy-duty electric trucks across North America,” Voorhoeve continued. “Volvo Group, and Volvo Trucks with the VNR Electric offering, is committed to leading the commercial transportation industry’s transition to zero-emission solutions and looks forward to building on the success of this project as we work with other partners to accelerate the adoption of these vehicles in other states.”

The Volvo LIGHTS project was made possible by a $48 million award to South Coast AQMD from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as part of California Climate Investments (CCI), a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars toward reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment. South Coast AQMD contributed $4 million from the Clean Fuels Fund and awarded the Volvo Group a $45.6 million contract to design and implement the LIGHTS project. Volvo and its partners promised no less than $45.7 million in matching contributions to increase the total project value to more than $91 million for South Coast AQMD to administer. The three-year project took place in Southern California in regions within the top 25% of the state’s disadvantaged communities.

Download the Volvo LIGHTS Lessons Learned Guidebook to learn about key insights gained during the three-year project.