Industrial design of mobility solutions


We design and develop mobility solutions that help consumers to move safely and professionals to work efficiently. Our focus is on how we can improve environmental impact, improve safety by creating great ergonomic solutions for the driver and reduce operating costs.

From e-bikes to heavy commercial equipment

We design both external body parts and interiors for trucks, construction equipment, agricultural machines, trains, trams or other means of transport. But also mobility solutions like e-bikes.

Concentration of drivers, whether we talk about a tram-driver or a wheel loader operator, is key in safety. More and more indicators, vehicle status modes, fuel consumption data, entertainment systems, camera views, safety sensor sounds are applied in commercial vehicles. And they all ask for attention from drivers.

The style of operation of a vehicle counts up to 30% of fuel use. Not only the style of driving, but also the style of using for instance hydraulic systems in heavy equipment. Mostly hybrid or electic solutions could help to make the vehicles greener, also in heavy equipment.



 
Volvo Wheelloader, vehicle industrial design

Next Generation Volvo L350I Hybrid

In cooperation with Volvo Construction Equipment we designed the L350I Hybrid, a concept study for a future successor of the present L350F.

The Volvo L350I Hybrid is a 52-tons wheel loader, designed to withstand the toughest operating conditions such as face loading freshly blasted rock.

Fuel consumption accounts for up to 30% of the total owning and operating cost of a wheel loader in this size class. The L350I is equipped with an efficient Volvo diesel engine in combination with plug-in hybrid technology, offering at least 15% - 25% lower fuel consumption than its size class competitors.
 
When designing new vehicles, mostly based on technical proven platforms from our clients, we focus on creating the best working environment for the driver. We challenge manufacturers to use new technological and ergonomic solutions and offer high end styling for vehicles that helps to convey the brand values and communicates the core-meaning of the vehicle.
 
 
Volvo Wheelloader, industrial design process

Hybrid Technology

The L350I Hybrid is equipped with an efficient Volvo diesel engine in combination with plug-in hybrid technology, offering lower fuel consumption. During test drives and driver observations we found that operaters do not understand the energy consumption of the hydraulic system and in multiple cases keep lifting and lowering the load while driving, thinking that this does not consume energy.

The new plug-in hybrid system concept consists of innovative electric cylinders with powerful electro motors, to replace the total need for hydraulics. While lowering the load, new electric energy can we generated by the same cylinders. Also braking will result in energy generation, while accelerating is assisted by the electro motor. Short jobs can be done completely electrically, after which the batteries can be charged again with a fast charger.

 
 
Volvo Wheelloader, exterior design

Volvo exterior design

In the new styling we added typical Volvo design elements to the body, created dynamic air inlets and a strongly articulated cabin design: leaning slightly forward, communicating focus and visibility. The cabin has been detached from the frame and air suspended for less vibrations in the interior.

Access to the engine compartment has been made easier, the mudguards do no longer need to be removed. The sloped mudguards themselves have been designed more robust, offering better shielding. The radiator has gotten better standard protection against objects penetrating the rear radiator while driving backwards.

Another improvement has been made on the staircase, which became more integrated in the vehicle, easier accessible, keeping clean from mud while climbing into the cabin with dirty boots.

The cabin comes with a glass roof, with sun protection shielding, for an open driving experience. The easy access doors are equipped with double hand-grips for easy entry into the cabin, both from the stairs as from the mudguards. On the front and back side an improved light design accounts for better sight at night.

 

 
Volvo Wheelloader, exterior design
 

 

 

 
Volvo Wheelloader, exterior design

Volvo interior redesign

When it comes to the interior, we have listened to the machine operators very well. During test-drives that we performed on several machines, we listened to and observed drivers in their daily work. We found multiple opportunities to improve the interior design.

Everything in the interior redesign has been focused on creating a peaceful, quite and comfortable space for the driver, with intuitive ergonomics and high quality materials, that help focus on driving responsibly fast, safely and sustainable.

Focus and concentration for the operator are translated in a high quality leather chair with most controls for driving and operating the machine integrated in the arm-rests. The steering wheel has been removed, in that place a high resolution display combined with analog clocks has been placed for optimal feedback on driving and vehicle information. All other places where in the older models controls were located, like on the dashboard, the A-style and ceiling, have been cleaned up.

For the drivers we created more storage places for gloves, boots and clothes and a passenger seat comes standard again.

We have integrated the displays of the rear driving camera's into the the mirrors, so that the driver sees all the available information from camera and mirrors combined in just a glance.

 

 
Volvo Wheelloader, exterior design
 

 

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