Share
November 5, 2021 1:00 PM, EDT

DOE Provides $128 Million for Electrified Truck Development

Volvo SuperTruck at 2016 MCE Volvo's SuperTruck on display at American Trucking Associations' 2016 Management Conference & Exhibition in Las Vegas. (John Sommers II for Transport Topics)

[Stay on top of transportation news: Get TTNews in your inbox.]

The U.S. Department of Energy provided five manufacturers with $128 million in funding to advance electrified truck technologies Nov. 1.

The DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy is providing the funding as part of its SuperTruck 3 initiative. Daimler Trucks North America, Ford Motor Co., General Motors, Paccar Inc. and Volvo Group North America are the recipients.

“DOE is working with manufacturers and industry partners to reimagine vehicle transportation across the country to achieve our climate goals,” U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said. “This investment and the innovations that come from it will help shape our clean energy future and strengthen domestic manufacturing that support good-paying careers.”

Vice President Kamala Harris joined Granholm at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York on Nov. 1 to announce $199 million in funding to develop cleaner cars and trucks.

What is SuperTruck?

The Department of Energy aunched the SuperTruck Initiative in 2009 to improve heavy-duty truck freight efficiency. The second iteration sought to double fuel efficiency for 18-wheelers. Now in its third generation, participants will work to improve medium- and heavy-duty truck efficiencies and reduce emissions in freight transportation.

The bulk of the funding went to the SuperTruck 3 initiative recipients. The projects will be funded over five years and are subject to appropriations. The recipients also must match the funding.

“We remain laser-focused on our goal to electrify our trucks and to help build the necessary infrastructure,” said Rainer Mueller-Finkeldei, DTNA senior vice president of engineering and technology. “Through DOE’s SuperTruck 3 program, we will be able to more quickly investigate high-risk, high-reward technologies.”

Daimler was awarded $25.8 million to develop and demonstrate two Class 8 fuel cell trucks with 600-mile range, 25,000-hour durability, and equivalent payload capacity and range to diesel. Volvo got $18.1 million to develop a 400-mile-range Class 8 battery-electric tractor-trailer with advanced aerodynamics, electric braking, EV optimized tires, automation and route planning.

We remain laser-focused on our goal to electrify our trucks.

Rainer Mueller-Finkeldei, DTNA senior vice president of engineering and technology

Rainer Mueller-Finkeldei

“We are grateful to be selected once again for DOE funding for SuperTruck 3 as our project scope includes a multitude of green technologies, including battery-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell drivetrains, as well as related charging infrastructure for a planned 400-mile logistics corridor across several mid-Atlantic states,” Keith Brandis, vice president of partnerships and strategic solutions at Volvo Group North America, told Transport Topics.

Paccar was awarded $33 million to develop eighteen Class 8 battery electric and fuel cell vehicles with advanced batteries and a megawatt charging station.

“Many of the technologies developed in the earlier SuperTruck programs were deployed in production vehicles, benefiting the environment and Paccar’s customers,” Kevin Baney, Kenworth Truck Co. general manager and Paccar vice president, said in a statement Nov. 4. “Kenworth, Peterbilt [Motors Co.], Paccar Parts, and the Paccar Technical Center are collaborating on the SuperTruck 3 program.”

Who Gets What?

Paccar $33 million

General Motors $26.1 million

Daimler $25.8 million

Ford $25 million

Volvo $18.1 million

Ford received $25 million to develop and demonstrate five hydrogen fuel cell-electric Class 6 super-duty trucks. General Motors was awarded $26.1 million to develop and demonstrate four hydrogen fuel cell- and four battery-electric Classes 4-6 trucks.

DOE also released the Low Greenhouse Gas funding opportunity that will invest $71 million in 20 research, development and demonstration projects with industry, academia and nonprofits.

Cummins, Daimler, Navistar and Volvo were selected to participate in the program at the time. The second iteration included $20 million in federal funding and sought to double fuel efficiency for 18-wheeler trucks in 2016. Cummins/Peterbilt, Daimler, Navistar and Volvo were selected for that version of the program. Paccar later joined in 2017. 

Now in its third iteration participants will work to improve medium- and heavy-duty truck efficiencies and reduce emissions of freight transportation.

Want more news? Listen to today's daily briefing below or go here for more info: