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Volvo CE to launch electric compact wheel loaders and excavators in 2020; stopping new diesel development on those models

In an industry-first move, Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) has announced that in 2020 it will start the launch of an electric range of Volvo-branded compact wheel loaders and compact excavators.

By mid-2020, Volvo CE will begin to launch a range of electric compact excavators (EC15 to EC27) and wheel loaders (L20 to L28), stopping new diesel engine-based development of these models.

With this move, Volvo CE is the first construction equipment manufacturer to commit to an electric future for its compact machine range. This follows an favorable reaction from the market after the successful unveiling of a number of concept machines in recent years, and by working closely with customers. This move is aligned with the Volvo Group’s strategic focus on electromobility in all business areas.

The first machines will be unveiled at the Bauma exhibition in April 2019, followed by a staged market-by-market introduction and ramp up in 2020.

While the company stresses that diesel combustion currently remains the most appropriate power source for its larger machines, electric propulsion and battery technology is proving particularly suited to Volvo’s smaller equipment.

With research and development investment now focused on the rapid development of its electric compact wheel loaders and excavators, Volvo CE is taking a step towards diesel-free compact equipment in the future.

Further information will follow in the coming months.



Volvo and all gearhead and all climate change associations can take a look at the c.c.p engine diagrams and explanations that I posted recently Here is the link.


I post the same comments here as in the article about the Cummins 6,7 engine.

This is not a new idea. A quite similar engine was developed by a Swedish inventor more than 30 years ago. It was called the “Alvar Engine” (Swedish: “Alvarmotorn”), by its inventor, Alvar Gustavsson. Most interest for this engine was in the early 90’s. The inventor had several working prototypes, so it was much more than a sketch on a napkin. He also received funding from Swedish governmental agencies (e.g. Nutek and STU). The corresponding governmental agency today is “Energimyndigheten” i.e. the Swedish Energy Agency. The engine was thoroughly analyzed by the University in Lund, a former employee of Volvo Car, as well as the Swedish auto industry. Most of the development was made before the “Internet era”, so you will not find much information on the Internet, but you could at least look at the patent literature (there are many more than those I listed below).

I will only describe the Alvar Engine shortly. The motion of the piston in the cylinder head of the Alvar Engine has its own crankshaft that is connected to the main crankshaft and it also had a mechanism for phase shift. The main purpose of the piston was to enable continuously variable compression ratio. It was also found that the piston does some of the compression work and some of the expansion work (this varies with phase shift) but the main advantage lies in the variable compression. However, the engine design also had its drawbacks. It could only use two valves and furthermore, these would be reduced in size. Thus, the engine would be quite “asthmatic” by today’s standard or 4-valve engines. You gain something by the variable compression but loose by increased pumping work. Perhaps the engine could have some advantages at low load but to gain power comparable to a conventional engine, you would have to scale up the Alvar Engine, which, in turn would reduce part load efficiency. Although most of the patents probably have expired by now, the auto industry has lost all interest in the Alvar Engine.

The claim by “regorr” that he would increase power by a factor of 6 is pure fantasy. Instead, this engine would have less power than the conventional engine. This was already found on the Alvar Engine and here we are not talking about theory, but we must realize that there were working prototypes of this engine as basis for this conclusion.

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