Volvo EC250D and EC300D excavators

Volvo EC250D and EC300D excavators have been designed to operate with faster cycle times and greater productivity than previous models.

With this in mind, the machines offer operators a seven to 10 per cent increase in fuel efficiency.

The company’s D7 diesel engine seamlessly integrates with all excavator systems, with the premium, six-cylinder engine delivering high performance and low fuel consumption. Auto engine shutdown, ECO mode and a fuel consumption display all contribute to fuel efficiency.

Volvo incorporates a smart hydraulic system which increases controllability, offering smoother and easier movement when travelling and lifting simultaneously. The harmonised boom and arm movement also works to offer better grading.

To enable a better working environment, the D-series cab comprises a I-ECU monitor for machine status information, a climate control system to set the ideal temperature and a rollover protective structure for increased operator safety.

The easy maintenance design incorporates safe and easy access centralised filters and grouped greasing points. The radiator, charged air cooler and hydraulic oil cooler are situated side by side on a single layer to maximise efficiency, reduce blockages and aid cleaning.

A fully sealed electrical distribution box contains all fuses and relays, working to protect against dirt and moisture for more machine uptime.

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Repurpose It goes Volvo buying excavators and loaders

Australian waste-to-resource company Repurpose It have opted for Volvo Construction Equipment’s excavators and loaders for their Victorian plant.

The five new machines will assist the company’s loading and handling duties to assist in their recycling operation that sees large quantities of waste material re-used in the construction industry.

One Volvo EC250DL and two EC220DL units were chosen for excavation duties on the site, Repurpose It aims to input the tools on general earthmoving, screen feeding, sorting and stockpiling projects.

The company chose the L110F and L220H two-wheeled loaders for their loading work which will see hopper fed into their new recycling plant.

Repurpose It CEO George Hatzimanolis said that the company was happy to choose Volvo as the manufacturer alings with their energy efficiency commitments and engineering values.

“Our business is focused on reducing our carbon footprint and working towards a more sustainable future, as is Volvo,” Mr Hatzimanolis said.

“We were also attracted to the quality that comes with Volvo machines.”

The two EC220DL excavation units chosen for the site uses Volvo’s modern D6 diesel engine reporting 10% extra fuel efficiency over its competitors.

The Volvo machines were purchased from Dandenong’s CJD Equipment, Volvo’s exclusive Australian distribution partner.

Volvo Trucks signs milestone deal with Norwegian company

In what is being described as a landmark deal by Volvo Trucks, the commercial vehicle manufacturer has announced it has agreed to provide its first commercial autonomous solution in Norway.

Brønnøy Kalk AS will use six driverless Volvo FH trucks to transport limestone from pit to port, a five-kilometre journey through a network of tunnels between the mine site and crusher.

The agreement, reportedly a first of its kind for Volvo Trucks, involves a deal whereby the customer buys a total transport service and pays per tonne delivered.
An operator of a wheel loader will manage the autonomous Volvo FH trucks from hub to hub in a controlled environment near Velfjord in Norway.

While tests for the operation have been ongoing, they are set to continue into the latter half of 2019 when it is anticipated the commercial solution will become fully operational.

It’s a first for Volvo Trucks who will be selling the transport solution rather than just autonomous trucks to Brønnøy Kalk.

Raymond Langfjord, Managing Director of the mine said it was an important first step given competition in the resources sector was always tough.

“We are continuously looking to increase our efficiency and productivity long-term, and we have a clear vision of taking advantage of new opportunities in technology and digital solutions,” he said.

“We were searching for a reliable and innovative partner that shares our focus on sustainability and safety.”

“Going autonomous will greatly increase our competitiveness in a tough global market,” said Langfjord.

Volvo Trucks, according to its President Claes Nilsson, is providing an autonomous solution that will meet the challenges of its customers in terms of safety, reliability and profitability.

“Global transport needs are continuously changing at a very high pace and the industry is demanding new and advanced solutions to stay ahead,” he said.

“Our aim is to be the leader of the development of products and services to respond to these demands” he said.

Reaching this point of introducing autonomous solutions, according to Sasko Cuklev, Volvo Trucks Director Autonomous Solutions, was exciting.

“By working in a confined area on a predetermined route, we can find out how to get the best out of the solution and tailor it according to specific customer needs,” he said.

“This is all about collaborating to develop new solutions, providing greater flexibility and efficiency as well as increased productivity.”

Volvo Group Australia to upgrade Queensland facility

Truck manufacturer Volvo Group Australia has announced it will upgrade its current truck plant in Wacol, Brisbane.

The news was announced at the launch of the company’s $30 million Australian headquarters and Brisbane south dealership.

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The new headquarters houses offices, a dealership dedicated to Volvo, Mack and UD trucks, which all had models on display and a 33,000 square metre workshop at the new Metroplex Westgate business park.

It features a Leonardo Di Vinci-inspired helix central staircase made of muted Scandinavian timber and a seven-metre glass hangar door inside a 12.5 metres high atrium to accommodate the display of heavy vehicles.

The company employs more than 1500 employees around Australia and has produced more than 60,000 trucks from its Wacol factory since 1972 when it first began manufacturing in Queensland.

Volvo Group international President and CEO Martin Lundstedt said the refurbishment of the nearby Wacol truck plant attests to the strong outlook of the company as it ramps up production.

“Our increase in market share towards 27 per cent over the past five years in combination with a strong heavy-duty truck market, makes it necessary to further increase our production capacity,” he said.

“In the past five years alone, production at our Wacol factory has increased by 40 per cent.”

Mr Lundstedt said the investment in the new Wacol facility will provide a boost to its 85 local component suppliers.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk welcomed the announcement at the opening of the new facility, which employs 500 workers and is a significant part of the state’s manufacturing base.

“Volvo Group is the only truck manufacturer to be awarded ‘Australian Made’ certification, and we’re particularly proud to call them Queensland-made,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

Their commitment to the state is a vote of confidence in our future and testament to the State’s economic strength.”

Outgoing Volvo Group Australia President Peter Voorhoeve said the building housed 200 staff.

“It’s a beautiful building but more than that it’s a tangible demonstration of Volvo Group’s commitment to its future operations in Australia,” he said.

Volvo Cars commit to 25 per cent recycled plastics by 2025

Volvo Cars has announced that by 2025 at least 25 per cent of the plastics used in each new Volvo will be made from recycled material.

It has also urged the auto industry suppliers to work more closely with car makers to develop new sustainable components, especially when it comes to plastics.

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The company has unveiled a new version of its XC60 T8 plug-in hybrid SUV that has several of its plastic components replaced with equivalents containing recycled materials.

The XC60’s interior has a console made from renewable fibres and plastics from discarded fishing nets and maritime ropes. The carpet contains fibres made from PET plastic bottles and a recycled cotton mix from clothing manufacturing offcuts.

The seats also contain material from PET bottles, with used car seats from old Volvo cars being used to create the sound absorbing material under the bonnet.

It follows the company’s announcement that it will electrify all new Volvo cars by 2019, stating that it aims to make fully electric cars 50 per cent of its global sales by 2025.

President and CEO of Volvo Cars Håkan Samuelsson said Volvo Cars is committed to minimising its global environment footprint.

Environmental care is one of Volvo’s core values and we will continue to find new ways to bring this into our business. This car and our recycled plastics ambition are further examples of that commitment,” he said.

Senior Vice President of Global Procurement at Volvo Cars Martina Buchhauser said the company already work with suppliers when it comes to sustainability.

“However, we do need increased availability of recycled plastics if we are to make our ambition a reality. That is why we call on even more suppliers and new partners to join us in investing in recycled plastics and to help us realise our ambition,” she said.

Image: Volvo Cars

JJ Richards & Sons bolsters fleet with 20 Volvo trucks

JJ Richards & Sons has started a seven-year contract to provide kerbside collection services for the City of Whittlesea, Victoria, with 20 new Volvo FE side-loaders.

The City of Whittlesea said in a statement that the waste collection trucks feature Euro VI–compliant environmental design, demonstrating its commitment to investing in sustainable equipment that reduces the impact of vehicle emissions. The contract began at the end of April.

The trucks are also fitted with the JJ Richards–designed j-Track in-cab computer system that provides real-time service tracking and information, reducing the likelihood of bins being missed. Data is reportedly updated within minutes and records every bin lift with location, date and time.

The vehicles are also fitted with Black Moth Mobile Vision System comprising an on-board dual-touchscreen computer as well as up to five wide-angle smart cameras, giving the driver access to 360° vision around the vehicle.

The Volvo side-loaders have also been engineered to be significantly quieter, with advanced engine braking systems and a thick layer of insulation under the cab to help reduce engine noise, therefore ensuring as little disruption to residents as possible.

Last year, JJ Richards & Sons invested in 20 new waste recovery trucks for a new nine-year kerbside waste and recycling contract in Cairns.

The FE Electric garbage truck is set for launch by Volvo Trucks in Europe. Developed with refuse equipment builder, Faun, the new truck will reportedly be operational in Hamburg, Germany, early 2019

Volvo backs new program for women drivers

The first Superior Heavy Vehicle Licensing (SHVL) program for women will be delivered in partnership between Wodonga TAFE’s Transport Division DECA, Transport Women Australia Limited (TWAL) and Volvo Group.

The program has been created to help women qualify for their heavy vehicle licence. Volvo will supply a prime mover for the four-week intensive training course designed to provide students with behind-the-wheel experience.

By encouraging female drivers to participate in the course, DECA was looking at a solution to address the driver shortage across the road transport sector.

At the recent Transport Women Australia Conference in Canberra, Women Driving Transport Careers was launched. Offered in Metropolitan Melbourne, the course will be arranged in conjunction with Volvo Group Australia Driver Academy.

Simon Macaulay, National Manager Transport at DECA, said the training will assist females obtain a high demand skill for which to fast-track their entrance into the heavy transport workforce.

“We provide participants with the industry standard skills and know-how. We take them through areas that are barely mentioned in a lot of licence instruction, such as safety protocols and health and safety procedures, road maps, fatigue management, chain of responsibility and use of technology,” Macauley said.

Volvo Group Australia has found the average age of truck drivers in Australia is 47. Meanwhile 52 per cent of employers, according to its research conducted in 2016, struggle to attract the quantity of drivers needed and 46 per cent are already experiencing a shortage of available drivers.

President and CEO of Volvo Group Australia Peter Voorhoeve said the company is working hard to attract new and more diverse talent into the heavy transport sector.

“Australia is standing on the precipice of a serious truck driver shortage, the effects of which will be felt far beyond the transport industry. If the industry does not find ways to attract more drivers to the industry, we will all feel the pain in higher prices for the things that trucks move up and down our highways – food, clothing, construction materials, medical supplies and consumer goods to name just a few.

“As the leading manufacturer of trucks in Australia, we take our role in the industry seriously, which is why we are constantly looking for new ways to grow the heavy transport sector workforce and champion greater diversity in the driver workforce.”

(Image: 2017 Volvo Truck Challenge finalist Kerri Connors).

Volvo release FE Electric garbage trucks

The FE Electric garbage truck is set for launch by Volvo Trucks in Europe. Developed with refuse equipment builder, Faun, the new truck will reportedly be operational in Hamburg, Germany, early 2019.

This follows the roll out of Volvo’s FL Electric garbage truck earlier this year as it continues its pursuit of alternative fuel vehicle development.

The FL Electric is set to enter operation in Gothenburg, Sweden, where Volvo headquarters is located.

Volvo has yet to confirm whether this recent development accelerates its goal of introducing electric trucks into the U.S. market, as has been previously stated by the company.

“This opens the door to new forms of cooperation with cities that target to improve air quality, reduce traffic noise and cut congestion during peak hours,” Claes Nilsson, President Volvo Trucks said.

“Commercial operations can be carried out quietly and without tailpipe exhaust emissions early in the morning or late at night.”

The Volvo FE Electric will be powered by two electric motors, with a range of up to 200 kilometres. Gross vehicle weight will be around 27 tonne.  The smaller Volvo FL Electric will have a range of up to 300 kilometres.