cellcentric - Hydrogen-based fuel cell joint venture between Volvo Group & Daimler Truck AG

cellcentric is a part of an industry-first commitment to accelerate the development and use of hydrogen-based fuel cells for heavy-duty commercial vehicles and non-automotive applications. It’s a 50:50 joint venture between Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG, with the ambition of becoming leading global manufacturers of fuel-cell systems, enabling the world to take a major step towards climate-neutral and sustainable transportation.

Volvo’s ambition with cellcentric is to build one of Europe’s largest planned series production of fuel-cell systems. To speed up the rollout of the Volvo Group hydrogen fuel cells and trucks, we call for a harmonized EU hydrogen policy framework to support the technology becoming a viable commercial solution.

Operations are planned to commence in 2025.

Part of the future of transportation: Hydrogen-based fuel cells

We are convinced hydrogen-powered fuel-cell electric trucks will be key in enabling increased CO2-neutral transportation. The ambition of the Daimler and Volvo Group joint venture, using hydrogen as a carrier of green electricity to power electric trucks in long-haul operations, will be vital to decarbonize road transport and meet the targets in the Paris agreement .

Hydrogen fuel-cell technology will play an essential role in helping us reach this ambitious target. And in combination with pure battery-electric drives, it enables us to offer a comprehensive offer of greenhouse gas neutral vehicles. Battery-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell trucks will complement each other depending on the individual customer use case:

  • Battery power will be the preferred choice for shorter distances and lower loads.
  • Hydrogen/Fuel-cell power will be the preferred option for longer distances and heavier loads.

A call for united action!

But there is much more to achieve than just the electrification of machines and vehicles. There’s a need for more cooperation between public and private stakeholders to develop the technology and infrastructure necessary to support these new types of vehicles. We are therefore calling for united action from policymakers and governments to support cellcentric, Daimler and Volvo Group joint venture, in making hydrogen fuel-cell technology a viable option.

New infrastructure & technology

To be able to meet the requirements of these new vehicles in Europe, we are calling for the setup of ~300 high-performance hydrogen refueling stations for heavy-duty vehicles by 2025, and ~1,000 hydrogen refueling stations no later than 2030.

New policy framework

As CO2-neutral trucks are currently significantly more expensive than conventional vehicles, a new policy framework is required to ensure demand and affordability. Volvo Group proposes a framework that include both incentives for CO2-neutral technologies and a taxation system based on carbon and energy content. An emissions trading system could also be an additional option.


We are currently conceptualizing the plans for cellcentric’s large-scale fuel cell series production. Additional details on the Volvo Group and Daimler fuel cell joint venture and a decision on the location will be revealed during 2022.

The preparations for the pre-series production of the Daimler and Volvo Group fuel cell are currently taking place at the newly established site in Esslingen. The prototype output of the Daimler and Volvo Group fuel cells is also scaling up.

We aim to start customer testing of our new fuel-cell trucks in about three years (2024) and begin the series production of our fuel-cell trucks during the second half of this decade.

About cellcentric

cellcentric is a Volvo Group and Daimler fuel cell joint venture that was created to help meet the 2050 targets of sustainable transport and support Europe in becoming carbon-neutral as part of the European Green Deal. Through cellcentric, we will develop, produce, and commercialize fuel-cell systems for both heavy-duty commercial vehicles and non-automotive applications.

Currently, there are more than 300 highly specialized experts working towards cellcentric’s goal of a carbon-neutral world in interdisciplinary teams at locations in Nabern, Stuttgart (Germany), and Burnaby (Canada). ~700 individual patents have been issued so far, underlining the leading role the Daimler and Volvo Group joint venture plays when it comes to technological development.


  • April 2020: A preliminary non-binding agreement for the cellcentric joint venture was signed.
  • November 2020: We signed a binding agreement with Daimler Truck AG.
  • 1 March 2021: The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG officially formed cellcentric. To that end, we acquired 50% of the partnership interests in the existing Daimler Truck Fuel Cell GmbH & Co. KG for approximately EUR 0.6 billion on a cash and debt-free basis.