Truck charging is emerging as a lucrative market opportunity in the electric vehicle (EV) landscape. By 2030, Europe is expected to see over 550,000 electric trucks on its roads, driving a substantial demand for charging infrastructure.
The world is witnessing a transformative shift towards sustainable transportation, driven by the urgent need to reduce carbon emissions. While the electrification of passenger cars has gained momentum, the trucking segment has been relatively slow to embrace this change. The reasons are complex, including concerns about range limitations and payload capacity for battery electric trucks, especially in medium- and long-haul applications.
However, recent developments indicate a growing commitment to electrify the trucking sector. Several prominent truck manufacturers have unveiled electric truck models, signaling a shift towards electrification. Daimler, Scania AB, Ford, DAF Trucks, MAN Truck & Bus SE, and Volvo Trucks are just a few examples of companies stepping into the electric truck market.
Ambitious Electrification Targets
The trucking industry’s transition to zero-emission (ZE) technologies is backed by ambitious targets. Major European truck OEMs, Traton Group, Volvo, and Daimler, are collectively aiming for at least 50% of new truck sales to be ZE vehicles by 2030. However, their strategies diverge. Traton is pursuing an electric-only approach, while Volvo and Daimler are adopting a dual-pronged approach, incorporating both battery electric and fuel cell electric technologies.
This diversity of strategies reflects the ongoing debate regarding the most suitable technology for different trucking use cases. Battery electric trucks, while mature, face challenges related to range, especially in long-haul applications. Hydrogen fuel cell trucks are seen as a promising alternative but are still in the early stages of development.
Truck Charging Use Cases
The truck charging ecosystem comprises four primary use cases: depot charging, destination charging, public fast charging, and public overnight charging. Depot charging, which accounts for over 80% of installed chargers, is expected to dominate, primarily due to shorter charging times and lower power requirements.
Truck Charging Revenue Pools
In terms of revenue pools, the truck charging market is set to experience significant growth. By 2030, revenue associated with depot charging is projected to reach nearly €490 million, with other use cases contributing as well. Installation services will play a crucial role, generating €768 million in revenue. Meanwhile, software-related services will yield around €152 million.
Public fast charging for electric trucks, which is critical for long-haul routes, is expected to become more prominent. These chargers require high power outputs, with the average charging power projected to be between 550 kW and 800 kW. Public overnight charging, primarily for long-haul trucks, will also see growth, though at a slower pace due to longer charging times. Both use cases will contribute to revenue growth in the sector.
Moreover, truck charging’s reliance on DC (direct current) technology will accelerate innovation and growth in the DC charging infrastructure, with potential spillover effects into the passenger EV market. DC charging is essential to meet the high power requirements of electric trucks.
The truck charging market is poised for substantial expansion as the electrification of the trucking industry gains momentum. With an increasing number of electric trucks hitting the road, charging infrastructure, particularly DC charging, will be in high demand, creating lucrative revenue pools for charging hardware, installation, and software services. The truck charging segment is a marathon with immense potential, and industry players willing to invest and innovate stand to reap significant rewards.
Source: truck electrification — profit booster or white elephant? | Arthur d. Little