September 2020 - With the EcoDuo concept, Schmitz Cargobull is advocating the Europe-wide introduction of a transport concept that reduces the burden on the existing infrastructure, reduces CO2 emissions, takes into account current transport industry standards – particularly for multi-modal transport jobs – and can ideally be used for extra-urban transport.
The EcoDuo system consists of two standard curtainsider semi-trailers connected via a dolly trailer and coupled to a tractor unit. The total tractor-trailer weight of the tractor and the first trailer remains unchanged at 40 tonnes; the weight of the second trailer can vary, though it can reach 36 tonnes to comply with current Scandinavian regulations. This trailer combination is currently being tested in Spain with a tractor-trailer weight of 40 tonnes for the first trailer and 30 tonnes for the second.
This flexible concept – based primarily on standard trailers – has a number of plus points. In conventional long truck concepts, the length of the load carriers used can differ, meaning they cannot be combined for flexible use, requiring fleets to invest additional money. Since this combination is not permitted in everywhere, and every country has different legislation, complete cross-border transport jobs are more difficult. In contrast, the EcoDuo trailer combination can easily be split between two tractor units at border points or in specific areas.
When compared to conventional tractor units and one trailer with a 40t total tractor-trailer weight, the EcoDuo concept offers the following advantages:
- Reduces fuel consumption and, as a result, lower CO2 emissions per transported tonne
- Lower single axle loads
- Increases road capacity or reducing traffic through the use of fewer trailers with more capacity
- Places less burden on roads and bridges by reducing the axle load and number of semi-trailers
- Alleviates the lack of drivers
- One driver, two trailers for long-distance transport.
“Currently, this trailer combination is only permissible in Scandinavia. Over the long term, however, we regard the EcoDuo as an ecologically and economically efficient transport solution for the whole of Europe,” explains Andreas Schmitz, Chairman of the Board of Schmitz Cargobull AG.
Unlike previous long truck concepts, the existing tractor-trailer fleets can still be used. Using two standard trailers, the existing dimensions in the transport industry remain unchanged. There is no need for additional investments in trailers beyond the existing standard trailers and the concept is truly modular. All current infrastructure can still be used without any expensive investments. This means that trailers can still be loaded onto trains and nothing will change in terms of loading and unloading procedures. When modern trailers are used – i.e. ones that are equipped with the latest axle and brake technology – the EcoDuo complies with all safety standards. The concept is therefore compatible with current traffic conditions without any additional risks – safety distances and warning signs ensure that cars can still overtake without any danger. Furthermore, the EcoDuo concept is also suitable for future technological developments, such as platooning and automated driving.
With the EcoDuo concept, Schmitz Cargobull offers the European solution to the previous long truck approaches.
About Schmitz Cargobull:
With an annual production of around 46,100 trailers and with around 5,700 employees, Schmitz Cargobull AG is Europe’s leading manufacturer of semi-trailers, trailers, and truck bodies for temperature-controlled freight, general cargo and bulk goods. The company achieved sales of approximately €1.87 billion in the 2019/2020 financial year. As a pioneer in the industry, the North German company developed a comprehensive brand strategy early on and consistently established quality standards spanning every level: from research and development, through production and service contracts, to trailer telematics, financing, spare parts, and used semi-trailers.
The Schmitz Cargobull press team:
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