Volvo bus numbers down 30% in the last year


The Volvo group’s bus sales have gone down “dramatically” through the pandemic, Kamal Bali, President & MD, Volvo Group, India, said at the launch of the Swedish company’s CampX office in India, the first site the company set up for innovation and collaboration outside Sweden.

“It has been down 30% in the last year and down 70% in the last two years,” Bali said. “The truck business also went through a downturn. It’s directly linked with GDP. The GDP contracted about 7-8% last year, so the truck business also contracted significantly. From 2018 levels, it was down to 50%. But it’s growing now. This year, I think it will go back to 3 lakh trucks from 1.75 lakh trucks last year. Even though it is a low base, it’s bouncing back very significantly. But still our peak was about 450,000 trucks. We are still far away from the peak.”

With CampX, Volvo is looking to facilitate collaboration and partnership with external stakeholders such as suppliers, customers, start-ups, incubators and accelerators outside the Volvo Group. Partners for CampX would come from within and around India and any interested stakeholders can get in touch with the company through the CampX website.

“Automation, electromobility and connectivity, along with new-age business models and technologies are transforming the future of the transport industry. With a rich start-up ecosystem in the country and the presence of one of Volvo Group’s largest product development sites, we are in a good position to support the future of the larger group, the transport industry and fuel innovation in the Indian context.” Bali said.

Volvo India is the third largest product development site within Volvo group globally. And the India team is hoping to climb up the ranks this year and become the second biggest site in the world.

“If there are new transport concepts, like, for instance, platooning, three trucks going one after the other, if there are some possibilities in that area, Volvo would be very happy to look at that. We’re looking at alternate fuels. Volvo has been doing work on alternate fuels working on the same IC engine. I think hydrogen fuel cells could be used for heavy duty vehicles for long haul, lithium ion batteries for short haul, and light commercial vehicles. And there could be alternate fuels as well in addition to electric mobility, which could be used on an existing IC (Internal Combustion) engine,” Bali said.

“We keenly look forward to co-create and test new ideas using our labs, workshops along with start-ups and other external stakeholders, in close collaboration with subject matter experts from Volvo. In our CampX site in Sweden, we already have gathered nearly 1,000 of our technical and business experts within automation, connectivity and electromobility in one common workplace working on exciting new projects. We plan to replicate the same environment in Bengaluru and we invite partners to join us in shaping the future of the transport industry.” CR Vishwanath, vice president, Trucks Technology, said.

Swedish Ambassador H.E. Klas Molin too was present at the inauguration.



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