Electric trucks too expensive? Now you can rent one from Volvo Trucks SA

18th April 2024 By: Irma Venter - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

Electric trucks too expensive? Now you can rent one from Volvo Trucks SA

Electric Volvo trucks available to rent

Volvo Trucks South Africa (SA) has introduced an equipment-as-a-service (EaaS) model for its new electric truck rentals business.

Following last year’s launch of Volvo electric trucks in South Africa, the company has been importing a range of configurations to suit local conditions.

“We recognise that the high initial capital cost of electric vehicles makes it harder for fleets to bring them into their business, especially those who have shorter-term contracts with their customers,” says Volvo Trucks SA sustainable solutions senior manager Eric Parry.

“The intent is to bring down this barrier to entry for those with the environmental ambition to move to cleaner transport solutions.

“That is why we will also be offering these trucks as rental units to our customers.” 

The local Volvo electric truck range currently consists of FH, FM and FMX models, configured as 4x2, 6x2 and 6x4 tractors.

The company will soon also have FM 4x2 and 6x2 rigids available.

Volvo Financial Services Southern Africa MD Paul Uys believes there is a clear demand for rental trucks in South Africa, as proven by the success of companies offering diesel vehicles.

“This is why we’ll be the first in South Africa to offer electric trucks in an equipment-as-a-service rental solution.

“The biggest advantage of vehicle rental is the reduced capital outlay compared with purchasing a truck.

“The rental option also allows you more flexibility in using the vehicle for a shorter period, without the commitment attached to a long lease obligation.”

Volvo Trucks’ EaaS rentals will be available countrywide.

What makes the business more than a mere vehicle rental operation, is that the company has also partnered with an established service provider to offer customers the required charger infrastructure across South Africa.

“We run detailed simulations for each route on which customers would like to operate an electric truck. This then allows us to determine the optimal location and size of the charger,” adds Parry.

“Our trucks can take up to a 250 kW DC fast charger. Depending on the client’s needs, we are then able to do a site survey and recommend the optimal charger installation for their location.

“Our supplier will be able to rent the charger to the client for the duration of the vehicle rental.”

The Volvo Financial Services offer is based on a period of six months or longer, and the amount will include the maintenance and insurance cost of the unit.

Each truck will be covered by a full Volvo Trucks Gold Maintenance contract.

Volvo Trucks SA currently has three dealers with the necessary technicians and tools to support its electric trucks.

In general, the trucks will only need to be serviced once a year, irrespective of the mileage travelled.

At this stage, a rent-to-own option is not available, says Uys.