Introducing a range of new products at the Bauma Trade Fair in Munich, Germany, last month, Volvo Construction Equipment president and chief executive Tony Helsham said the Swedish manufacturer plans to market machines featuring hybrid technology by 2009. Helsham said Volvo is spending $35 billion on a range of energy saving and environmental research.
Helsham said the integrated hybrids could lower emissions and save fuels up to 50 percent and be able to operate on bio-fuels. Helsham said the first machine to be launched using hybrid technology would likely be a wheel loader.
“While different hybrid configurations, bio-fuels and energy storage systems are still being investigated, the basic technology platform is already established,” Helsham said. “Prototype machines will be on test with customers next year, with limited serial product due to begin in 2009.”
Helsham also spoke about integration strategy for its recent acquisition, Chinese wheel loader manufacturer Shadong Lingong Construction Machinery Co., Lingong, China, and the road development division of Ingersoll-Rand.
Helsham said the Lingong investment offers the prospect of becoming a development center for low-cost products for emerging markets as well as global sourcing opportunities. The investment also offers Volvo an established distribution network across China. These products will be marketed under the Lingong name, rather than that of Volvo.
The Ingersoll Rand deal offers Volvo a market-leading position in road machinery, with premium products and major growth opportunities.