By Nye Longman:Credit:Supply Chain Digital
Volvo Trucks’ new concept vehicle shows how it is possible to drastically boost productivity in long-haul operations by cutting fuel consumption by over 30 percent.
A great deal of these remarkable fuel savings can be attributed to aerodynamic design and lower kerb weight. With support from the Swedish Energy Agency, Volvo Trucks has developed a new concept vehicle, known as the Volvo Concept Truck. This is the result of five years’ research aimed at creating more energy-efficient vehicles.
“We continuously work on developing more energy-efficient vehicles. This is a high-priority area both out of environmental concern and in order to reduce our customers’ costs. We’re proud to be able to drive this development. Our concept truck showcases the immense power of on-going technical advances,” said Claes Nilsson, President and CEO Volvo Trucks.
One of the key factors behind the low fuel consumption is the massive 40 percent improvement in aerodynamic efficiency that has benefited both the tractor and trailer.
“We’ve modified the entire rig and optimised it for improved aerodynamics as much as possible. For instance, we use cameras instead of rear-view mirrors. This cuts air resistance, so less energy is needed to propel the truck,” explained Åke Othzen, Chief Project Manager at Volvo Trucks.
The new vehicle is fitted with newly developed tyres with lower rolling resistance. The trailer weighs two tonnes less than the reference trailer, which translates into either lower fuel consumption or the possibility of higher payload. The project also includes an improved driveline.
Work on the Volvo Concept Truck has been in progress since 2011; the aim is to improve long-haul truck transportation efficiency by 50 percent.