European groups tie fuel savings to size, weight limits

If you really want to save fuel, requiring fuel savings technologies such as improved aerodynamics will not be enough, European commercial vehicle manufacturers and fleets told their regulatory agencies November 19.  Higher size and weight limits are needed, too.

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the International Road Transport Union (IRU) jointly called on EU decision-makers to focus on commercial vehicle fuel-efficiency when reviewing the 96/53/EC weights and dimensions proposal. The road freight transport and commercial vehicle manufacturing industries reiterated the need to permit the wider use of fuel-saving technologies, rather than relying solely on additional aerodynamic performance improvements.

The two groups asked the European Parliament and the Council to use improved overall fuel-efficiency – rather than solely aerodynamic performance – as a precondition for allowing increased vehicle length.

ACEA Secretary General Erik Jonnaert said, “There are many more effective ways of reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions than entirely redesigning the cabin. The industry is committed to continuing to improve truck safety. However, for this, safety technologies that prevent accidents happening in the first place are the best way forward. A whole vehicle approach represents the best possible solution.”

IRU General Delegate to the EU, Michael Nielsen, said, “The final agreement on weights and dimensions must allow road freight transport operators to further reduce fuel consumption, improve efficiency, comfort and safety with as few restrictions as possible. I urge European decision-makers to reach an agreement that ensures the benefits we all wish to see are realized.”


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