The Polish government has issued special permits with no time limit for 300 extended trailers with a length of 49 feet for national transport.
These semitrailers, extended by 4 feet, are being deployed in the framework of a model investigation in Poland, monitored by the Motor Vehicle Technical Institute, Instytut Transportu Samochodowego, in Warsaw. After completion of investigations, the survey by the institute is intended to be used as the basis of an order at European level to change the dimensions of semitrailers in accordance with lengths tested in the large-scale investigation.
Approval of this large-scale investigation by the government corresponded to an application by Kögel. The German manufacturer will receive 150 of the issued permits for the supply of its extended trailers, called Big-MAXX, to Polish transport companies. The other 150 permits have been issued to the Polish manufacturer Wielton.
There is already great interest in other European nations in the concept of a trailer extended by 4 feet, such as the one presented by Kögel as early as 2005. While a countrywide large-scale investigation incorporating 300 vehicles of this type has been running in Germany since 2006, the Czech government has recently fundamentally approved extended trailers by issuing an individual special permit. This means Czech transport companies can use the Big-MAXX for national transport without any restrictions. There is no limitation on routes, the same as in Poland.
Italy is also testing extended trailers with a length of 49 feet. The government agreed to a test using 15 vehicles in April. The permit for manufacture was issued to the four Italian manufacturers Merker, Viberti, Rolfo, and Omar. Interest has also been expressed in the concept by the Netherlands, Great Britain, and Spain. Kögel Big-MAXX trailers can licensed in Belarus, Ukraine, and Russia without any constraints, without extra approval costs, and without any limits on numbers.
With development of the Big-MAXX, Kögel has been throwing its full weight behind proposed changes to the length restrictions of semitrailers in Europe since 2005, so that at least part of the ever-increasing transport volume can be absorbed without additional strain on roads or investment in infrastructure. The Big-MAXX can transport 37 pallets instead of the previous 33, thus offering a reduction in fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions per transported pallet. The vehicles fulfill the design-led European circulatory regulations for motor vehicles, and with the exception of overall length, all the other registration regulations. As such, no modifications to the infrastructure are required for the Europe-wide deployment of the Big-MAXX.
According to estimates of the Allgemeinen Deutschen Automobilclubs ADAC (German Automobile Club), no impaired traffic safety is expected by use of the extended trailer. Moreover, with its rail-loading version Big-MAXX rail, Kögel has demonstrated that the extended trailer is compatible with the pocket wagon of the combination traffic operator and therefore is suited to intermodal traffic in Europe.