For the first time, DHL Freight has combined a LNG-powered truck with a mega trailer. This environmentally friendly combination of vehicles will be tested within the supply chain of the BMW group for the period of one year.
Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) is a good alternative to conventional diesel fuel. Consumption is lower by 15 percent, particular matter emission is decreased by 99 percent and up to 70 percent less nitrogen oxides are produced. In addition, the vehicles are distinctly less noisy. However, the complicated tank construction is a drawback, which is why specially equipped trucks could as yet not be combined with so-called megatrailers, i.e. extra-large trailers.
Test run in Southern Germany
DHL Freight has constructively solved this problem and now for the first time brings into operation such a combination in the course of a test run. For a one-year period the Iveco Stralis is operating between a production site of the BMW Group in Southern Germany and the logistics centres of DHL. The service contract between the automobile manufacturer and the logistics specialists was extended in the past and DHL Freight thus continues to be the transport logistics operator for the group in 24 regions in Europe.
More space for large parts
The BMW Group is the ideal testing partner for this combination of vehicles, as particularly vehicle manufacturers preferably use the big trailers with a loading height headroom of three metres. So even larger parts and more grid boxes for vendor parts can be loaded easily. “The combination of LNG truck and mega trailer is a promising sustainable solution for automotive logistics. We are able to meet the customer’s transport requirements in the best possible way, while also significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions along the supply chain,” says Uwe Brinks, CEO DHL Freight.
Successful in Belgium
LNG trucks are by no means a new territory for DHL Freight: In Belgium, four long-haul trucks have been in use since mid of 2018 on behalf of one of the largest sporting goods manufacturers in the world, very much in line with an eco-friendly supply chain. “The increase in fuel efficiency and proven reduction of harmful emissions that comes with using natural gas help to make long-distance road transport more sustainable,” says Uwe Brinks.
Environmental protection as a corporate goal
Deutsche Post DHL Group aims reducing its logistics-related emissions to zero by 2050. Therefore, DHL Freight is increasingly investing in alternative drive trains for road transportation in local and long-distance traffic. LNG-powered trucks operate well below the levels required by the current Euro-IV emission standards and are because of this but also because of their lower noise generation, ideal for inner-city transport.