The electric mobility of the Swiss Army is taking shape

The Federal Armasuisse Office will test two zero-emission trucks for a two-year period and is awaiting 70 "full electric" cars

armasuisse: electric trucks
The tested electric trucks of the Federal Office for Armasuisse (Volvo FH Electric and Mercedes Benz eActros) (Photo: VBS/DDPS)

The Federal Office of Armaments armasuisse, i.e. essentially the armed forces of Swiss Confederation, is testing two battery-electric trucks.

The trial will last two years and aims to gain experience and knowledge in the field of alternative drivetrains implemented in the army as well as to develop the basis for future purchases of electric vehicles.

At the same time, around 2023 electric cars will also be delivered to the logistics base of the Swiss Army starting from autumn 70.

The introduction of these alternative forms of transmission is foreseen by the “Energy and Climate” Action Plan of Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport which, among its objectives, also includes that of reducing the CO2 emissions of the DDPS compared to 2001 by at least 40 percent by 2030.

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armasuisse: electric mobility
Existing charging infrastructures at 50 Swiss sites will be expanded
(Photo: VBS/DDPS)

A Volvo FH Electric and a Mercedes Benz eActros under two-phase monitoring

armasuisse is carrying out a two-year test on two trucks fully electric, a Volvo FH Electric and a Mercedes Benz eActros.

In the first phase, which is expected to last until autumn 2024, the operating conditions in extreme situations, aspects relating to safety in driving school mode and for professional personnel, as well as the behavior of the battery and the traction system.

Furthermore, the cost-effectiveness ratio will be compared with traditional fossil fuel-powered heavy-duty vehicles.

The second phase, which will have a more long-term character, will take into account the life cycle cost and the impact on the infrastructure.

Through daily use and mileage comparison, comparable to that of the civilian environment, information is obtained on the need for maintenance and repairs.

From these it will therefore be possible to develop suitable measures to guarantee continued operation of the trucks.

For the entire duration of the testing, the effects on the training of staff in driving school mode and also use in other sectors.

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armasuisse: electric vehicles
The new generation of electric vehicles of the Swiss Army, including 70 cars
(Photo: VBS/DDPS)

Reduce CO2030 emissions from vehicles heavier than 2 tonnes by 3,5

The testing will last until the end of 2025 and aims to provide alternative drivetrain expertise for productive use at the competence center Training and leading the army and internal logistics of the Army Logistics Base (BLEs).

The objective of the testing is to acquire information on the different application possibilities as well as the possible effects on the infrastructure and then develop, on this data base, a solid platform for future purchases.

The testing carried out on fully electric trucks and the information obtained will make it possible to understand to what extent the CO2030 emissions of vehicles weighing more than 2 tonnes can be reduced by 3,5 and what methods allow management to be made more eco-friendly. of the DDPS fleet.

More electric cars and expansion of charging infrastructure

From autumn 2023, another 70 electric cars will be delivered to the Army Logistics Base.

These vehicles are used in businesses and administration and replace petrol and diesel vehicles.

Previously, as part of a successfully completed pilot project, even career military personnel had already been equipped with electric vehicles.

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armasuisse: electric truck
The Swiss Army has been in contact with electric transport for several years
(Photo: VBS/DDPS)

An increasingly green fleet of vehicles and an expansion of the 50 charging infrastructures

The existing charging infrastructures at the 50 relevant sites located throughout Switzerland will be further expanded.

The introduction of vehicles equipped with alternative broadcasts it is one of the measures envisaged by the DDPS Energy and Climate Action Plan and is part of the Climate Package forFederal Administration.

In 2019, the Federal Council decided that the Federal Administration should intensify its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption.

By 2030, they will have to reduce emissions of CO2 in the DDPS by at least 40 percent compared to 2001.

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armasuisse: electric car
There are also around 70 more electric cars at the logistics base of the Swiss Army (Photo: VBS/DDPS)