Volvo Penta (part of Volvo Group) announced that it has commenced production of bespoke electric drivelines for world’s first serial electric fire truck - Rosenbauer’s “Revolutionary Technology” (RT).

The Swedish company has adapted EV technology from Volvo Trucks and Volvo Buses to create a dedicated setup for the RT, which utilizes a completely new vehicle architecture.

The vehicle uses a dual-motor all-wheel-drive system and a six-cylinder diesel engine in case the 50 kWh or 100 kWh runs out of electricity.

"Unlike other Volvo Group EVs that might have two or sometimes three electric machines, the RT required four to do its job. All four electric machines have to be able to run simultaneously – two for propulsion, one for the range extender to provide extra battery power, and one for electric power takeoff, if fire-fighters want to rotate the foam pump for example. To achieve this, the Volvo Penta engineers created a system that is completely cutting edge in terms of Volvo Group technology."

"Due to the required compact dimensions of a city fire truck, Volvo Penta created a new Active Cooling Unit (ACU). This component was developed in part collaboration with Rosenbauer. The new ACU draws on a 600V system – instead of the conventional 24V – this extra power allows Volvo Penta to not only cool the batteries but also offer cooling capacity to the Rosenbauer vehicle. This is one way Volvo Penta has optimized the design and adapted the complete electric driveline system for a specific vehicle, considering the exact application, usage, climate, and environment it will operate in."

Rosenbauer’s electric fire truck “Revolutionary Technology” (RT)
Rosenbauer’s electric fire truck “Revolutionary Technology” (RT)

So far, only a few units were built and entered pilot service in Berlin, Amsterdam, and Dubai, as well as were demonstrated around the world, including in the U.S.

It will be very interesting how well the electric fire trucks will cope in the real world as it's a much more demanding application than an ordinary electric truck. This is also why there is still an onboard diesel generator.

Rosenbauer’s electric fire truck “Revolutionary Technology” (RT) specs:

  • 50 kWh battery pack (standard, 550 kg) or 100 kWh (option)
  • Volvo Penta electric driveline
  • dual motor all-wheel drive (one electric motor per axle, with two-speed gearbox each)
  • system output of up to 360 kW (490 HP) and up to 50,000 Nm for all wheels
    a six-cylinder diesel engine with an output of 200 kW (272 HP) and a power generator
  • DC fast charging at up to 150 kW (50-80% in one hour in the case of 100 kWh version)
  • power export feature of up to 18 kW
  • 2.35 m wide and 7.30 m long with a wheelbase of 3,800 m (also available with wheelbases of 4,100 mm and 4,400 mm), height is 2.90 m
  • total weight of 18 tons
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