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Volvo Cars commit to electrification at North Sea Port plant

Published on Fri 5 Mar 2021
Car manufacturer Volvo Cars is strengthening its electric ambitions. There is to be pioneering role for the Ghent factory in North Sea Port assembling the first fully electric models. North Sea Port is also an important hub in the logistics of new Volvo cars.

Volvo Cars made a resolute choice for the electric car. By 2025, one in two Volvo sales will be electric and the other will be a hybrid. Five years later, the car maker will produce fully electric cars only.

The Sifferdok works in Ghent are the forerunners: October last year saw the production of the first XC40 Recharge. A second all-electric model will be added this year: the C40 Recharge. And production capacity for electric models will triple. The C40 Recharge - the first Volvo ever designed as an all-electric car - meant the start of Volvo Cars’ new chapter in its 55-year history at North Sea Port. It is a start which will establish the largest East Flemish industrial employer even more firmly in North Sea Port.

Maritime and logistics hub

The choice of Ghent as their location was prompted half a century ago by the opportunity of building a maritime bridge to Gothenburg, the car manufacturer's home base in Sweden. Ghent also proved to be the ideal location for the multimodal distribution of vehicles on the European market.

Today, these are still Volvo Cars’ trump cards, as proven by the terminal started up last year at the Mercatordok in Ghent. It is the place with perfect interaction of rail, water and road transport. This fits in with the green objectives of Volvo Cars logistics and ideally matches the strategy of North Sea Port.

The presence of this assembly plant, which today is the largest in Belgium and the Netherlands, means that we may call North Sea Port a car port. There are other car makers that ship their vehicles through the port. In addition to Ghent, Flushing also has a lot of activity in this sector. From Flushing, ro-ro ships transport new cars to and from the UK.