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Long haul operations come with a unique set of challenges, one of them being the cost of fuel that can grow to be astronomical by the end of the year. Volvo is seeking to change this, increasing the bottom lines of trucking companies and having a great benefit for the environment to boot by developing a new set of ultra fuel efficient trucks.
The new look of the truck (pictured above) may take a bit of getting used to, but that’s all a part of the aerodynamic and ultra lightweight design that helps to increase fuel efficiency by roughly 30% (!!!). Volvo’s aim with the new concept truck is to prove that it’s possible to drastically increase the productivity of long haul fleets worldwide.
The trucks were built with support from the Swedish Energy Agency in a 5-year research project to build 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,” says Claes Nilsson, President and CEO Volvo Trucks.
Volvo took an interesting approach to increasing their fuel efficiency. For example, they got rid of their rear view mirrors and replaced them with small cameras which cut down on wind resistance, requiring less power to propel the truck forward.
The trucks have been tested on Swedish roads in the Fall of 2015 and feature newly designed tyres which reduce rolling resistance.
I think we can all agree that increasing fuel efficiency by 30% is a huge step forward in both cost reduction & environmental practices. But Volvo’s not stopping there. They are hoping to increase fuel efficiency by an additional 20%, as some of their innovations on this research project make their way into the design of the regular Volvo truck design.