Rockview Farms final two Volvo VNR Electric trucks were deployed.

Rockview Farms final two Volvo VNR Electric trucks were deployed.

Photo: Volvo Trucks North America/Work Truck

Rockview Farms, a family-owned and operated dairy business in Southern California, deployed two Volvo VNR Electric trucks to support farm-to-customer deliveries of local California milk.

The zero-tailpipe emissions battery-electric trucks will help reduce noise and emissions in the neighborhoods surrounding Rockview Farms’ facility in Downey, California. This area is known as the central hub for deliveries throughout the greater Los Angeles area.

Rockview Farms’ Volvo VNR Electric trucks are the final two trucks to be funded through the award-winning Volvo LIGHTS project. 

Volvo LIGHTS Project

Volvo Trucks deployed its first Class 8 Volvo VNR Electric trucks to fleet operators in 2019 as part of the Volvo LIGHTS project.

Over the next several years, Volvo Trucks North America, South Coast Air Quality Management District, and 12 other organizations designed and implemented a blueprint for the complete ecosystem needed to successfully deploy commercial battery-electric freight trucks, eventually deploying more than 30 of these vehicles in California’s South Coast Air Basin.  

“Our Downey facility is surrounded by neighborhoods, and as Southern California’s hometown dairy since 1927, we strive to be a good neighbor in our hometown. We were excited to receive funding for the Volvo VNR Electric trucks to help reduce emissions from our daily operations, while also reducing noise, as the battery-electric trucks are very quiet,” said Curt DeGroot, owner, Rockview Farms.

“Our drivers love them for those same reasons. We’ve had to keep the same drivers on the trucks, because once they drive the Volvo VNR Electric trucks, they don’t want to go back to driving anything else,” DeGroot added. 

The Volvo VNR Electric model produces zero-tailpipe emissions and significantly reduces heat, noise, and vibrations, allowing for the quietest and most comfortable experience, leading to greater driver productivity and job satisfaction.  

Optimizing Electric Trucks

TEC Equipment – La Mirada, a Volvo Trucks Certified Electric Vehicle Dealer, provides ongoing training to Rockview Farms drivers to help them understand how to optimize the range of the Volvo VNR Electric, including how to leverage regenerative braking benefits to add power back to the battery.  

What Is Regenerative Braking?
When braking with an EV, the system recovers the kinetic energy and converts it into electricity to use for the EV.

The dealership also utilized a route planning tool, the Electric Performance Generator (EPG) to help Rockview Farms evaluate the routes that were best suited for its Volvo VNR Electric trucks, taking into consideration the vehicle configuration and battery capacity, environmental factors such as terrain and ambient temperature, and specific route details, including traffic patterns.

In addition to supplying grocery stores in Southern California, the battery-electric trucks supply cruise ships at the Port of Long Beach four times a week. Rockview Farms is currently evaluating the trucks to see how they perform on their current routes and has already identified 10 additional local routes that could be a good fit for electrification.  

Rockview Farms is building out high-powered charging infrastructure at its Downey facility to support the battery-electric Volvo VNR Electric trucks with funding from Southern California Edison (SCE)’s Charge Ready Transport program. Once complete, the infrastructure will also charge the batteries for its electric transport refrigeration units (eTRUs).

The facility is currently utilizing temporary 75kW chargers to support the Volvo VNR Electric trucks and two planned electric yard trucks.  

The Latest Volvo Green Updates

In December, Volvo announced similar news with Ryder Systems. The company replaced its diesel trucks with seven zero-tailpipe emissions battery-electric trucks. The Volvo VNR Electric trucks will be used on the previous diesel trucks servicing routes and operations. 

Producers Dairy also bought two Volvo VNR Electric trucks in April to deliver farm-to-table goods.

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