The performance of the commercial vehicles sector is often used as an indicator of the status of the economy of a country – the more vibrant the economy, the higher the consumer demand for commodities – and the more commodities sold, the more trucks are needed to transport them to the end user
“Our brands serve the needs of a specific type of trucking clientele and the products that we offer are greener and cleaner, and above all, technology that creates a safe driving environment,” Riley adds.
Green technology – the future is here
A few short years ago, green technology would have seemed like something from a futuristic sci-fi movie. But terms such as “hydrogen-powered vehicles”, “fuel cell technology” and “hybridisation” are a part of the present, not the future, as the quest for lower emission levels and carbon neutrality is stepped up at Daimler AG and all its subsidiaries.
The 6.5 tonne Canter Eco Hybrid, with its 3 tonne payload, is the ideal urban delivery vehicle, being that the low sulphur fuels needed to power its Euro 4 engine are now available in the major metro areas in Japan, Europe and Australia.
The truck also lends itself to the stop-start scenario of urban travel as this pattern of driving allows for much more economical operation using its parallel hybrid system. This amazing innovation allows for energy from braking to be turned into heat. This is in turn used to power a generator which charges a lithium-ion battery. Energy from the battery is used to get the vehicle moving from a stop position.
“The truck continues running on this energy until the electrical requirement is such that diesel operation kicks in again,” explains Prince.
Given a sufficient charge in the lithium ion battery, the engine will switch off as soon as the truck stops or idles for more than 15 seconds, saving on fuel consumption and reducing emission levels.
“Because of this method of operating, the full benefit of this vehicle can thus only be realised in an urban environment and no advantage is gained if used over long distances,” he adds.
The FUSO, Freightliner and Western Star brands exhibited offers proven technology, specific to a number of customers’ specific requirements. With the focus on bottom line, these brands combine fuel economy, driver ergonomics and vehicle safety to ensure operating efficiencies.
There are a number of value added services available for customers, from flexible financing (CharterWay), to superior fleet management through telematics (FleetBoard now available for Freightliner), specialised driver training programmes and competitive maintenance and warranty options.