Volvo ramps up sustainability drive with investment in electric excavator manufacturer

VOLVO Construction Equipment has strengthened its sustainability aspirations by investing in Dutch firm Limach, a manufacturer of electric excavators for the domestic market.

The majority investment in Electric Special Technics B.V – which operates under the brand name Limach – is described as complementing Volvo’s long-term electrification roadmap and provides the opportunity to ‘swiftly broaden the electromobility portfolio’ and add to the five electric compact machines currently available.

Limach offers customised electric wheeled and crawler excavators to the Dutch market. It applies Li-Ion battery technology to develop electrical machines using conventional Volvo CE products as a base.

Thomas Bitter, head of technology at Volvo CE, said, “Climate change is real and we believe collaborating in new ways is key to meet the growing demand for sustainable solutions. As a leader in electric construction solutions, we see Limach as an interesting actor in a progressive market, and a great complement to our existing portfolio of electric machines, meaning our customers will benefit from a broader range to suit their requirements.

“Working together, and with our combined customer base, opens opportunities for co-learning and expanding experiences of these types of solutions, as we continue driving the transformation towards sustainable power sources.”

The current range extends from the compact E18.3 electric mini-excavator with an operating range of 1,810kg to the E140.1, which packs an operating weight of over 14,000kg.

Rens de Bruijn, CEO at Limach, added, “Limach was established with the purpose to develop construction equipment with an electric drive. Each machine is custom-made at our production facility in Ede in the Netherlands and delivered according to customer specifications.

“Since the development of our first demonstrator excavator in 2017, we have seen growing demand from customers in the Netherlands. Thanks to the investment from Volvo CE, we can scale-up production of our electric excavators and extend the range we offer to meet this growing appetite for electric drives.”

Limach will continue to operate as a standalone company. Volvo said the transaction is not expected to have a significant impact on the Volvo Group’s earnings or financial position.