Volvo Group* has launched a new website devoted to its ideas for the future.
The Volvo Tech World website (www.volvogroup.com/techworld)/ will be a showcase for the new technologies under development at the Swedish company.
Volvo spent more than $180 million on R&D in 2011 and its competitors shouldn’t expect easy, one-stop shopping for the company’s trade secrets, but Volvo says many of its ongoing research projects will be displayed on Tech World.
“Times are different and being open about where we are heading is now beneficial for us, our customers and society,” says Torbjörn Holmström, Volvo’s Chief Technology Officer. “We will have the greatest opportunity to address current challenges and those of the future through cooperation.”
The current entries are mostly overviews of various technologies, such as autonomous excavators, and green concepts like electric buses that charge in ten minutes, vehicle fuel from forest raw material, vehicles that communicate with each other, electricity generation from surplus engine heat, boat simulators and hybrid trucks running on special roads that use inductive charging to keep fuel consumption at a minimum.
Included is a discussion of one of Volvo’s favorite topics: increasing the maximum length allowed for combination trucks on European highways. Volvo has been pushing for the expanded limits for years, despite opposition from the European Union and the railroads.
Volvo has an ulterior motive for creating the website — recruitment of engineering talent. Volvo wants current and future engineers to get a taste of what is going on at the tech centers in Göteborg, Sweden, Lyon, France and Greensboro, North Carolina.
“Tech World clearly demonstrates the challenges and future prospects existing within the Volvo Group,” Holmström noted. “We hope to be able to show that Volvo Group’s engineers are world-leading in many areas and contribute significantly to creating a future in which the environmental impact is reduced and traffic safety is higher.”
*Volvo Group is the original company and produces trucks, buses, heavy equipment and marine propulsion systems. Volvo, the carmaker, is a subsidiary of Zhejiang Geely Holding Co. and has not been part of Volvo Group since 1999.