Volvo to Build Electric Test Fleet

Following the introduction of the battery electric Volvo C30 at the 2009 Frankfurt Auto Show, the Swedish carmaker announced it plans to roll out a fleet of at least 50 such vehicles to be tested beginning with 2010. The C30 EV will take to the road, for real-life traffic testing, starting with 2011.

"The first prototype helped us identify the main technological challenges, such as battery packaging and safety issues. We have addressed these challenges without compromising the C30's cool and fun-to-drive personality. I am very happy with the result. The electric C30 in Detroit is a much more complete product," Lennart Stegland, Director of Volvo Cars Special Vehicles said.

For the future fleet, Volvo will select the owners/testers, in a project backed by the Swedish Energy Agency with some 150 million SEK. The owners will relay both technical and behavioral feedback to the carmaker.

"Our test fleet data will be valuable in Volvo Cars' development of electric cars. It will also provide crucial input for the infrastructure planners and help define which services are needed to make rechargeable cars the most attractive choice in the future," Stegland added.

The C30 BEV, as the car is named by Volvo, shares the same look with the regular C30 but obviously comes with major improvements of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Powered by a lithium-ion 24 kWh battery pack, the car is capable for traveling for around 93 miles (150 km) on a single charge. The maximum speed is limited to 80 mph (129 km/h), with the car going from standstill to sixty in 11 seconds.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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