Whilst governments continue to work on banning petrol and diesel, new and used cars to meet emission targets, the need for electric heavy goods vehicles is essential to decarbonise this part of the global transport network.
This process in the motor trade is already well under way, as DAF Trucks is the latest lorry maker to start making electric only HGVs. They’re not the only HGV manufacturer in the market with big ideas, Mercedes began delivering to clients back in Autumn 2018, and Volvo and Tesla have already confirmed they’re working on their own pure-electric vehicles.
Tesla claim their new electric HGV will deliver more than just short journeys, it will be able to tow 40 tonnes of cargo and travel up to 500 miles on just one single charge.
DAF has already started delivering its first electric lorries. They will begin hauling cargo for clients in the Netherlands as a test project before taking their new HGV on to a full-scale production. They expect the field test will have a big impact on plans for low carbon haulage. DAF claim their new electric HGV is capable of deliveries within a radius of around 30 miles on a single charge, their vehicle will be delivering supplies from its local distribution centre to nearby client stores.
Some media channels claim mega-charging will break the laws of physics due to Tesla’s claimed ranges, but big industry players like Walmart, who has been reducing their emissions over recent years have already pre-ordered 15 new electric HGVs from a large manufacturer. Delivery giants UPS have been using small electric vehicles for years in some countries, and they’ve also recently placed a large electric HGV order with a big supplier.
It’s been reported that health services in some UK regions have been trialling all electric fast response vehicles, and not just for patients with a private healthcare insurance policy. Whilst Nissan unveiled an electric ambulance in Japan that carries a lithium-ion auxiliary battery to power the on-board medical equipment.
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Out in the countryside there are plans already in motion for fully electric powered tractors, it’s claimed they require less maintenance and have a longer life span than combustion engines. With many farms already generating their own solar power, it’s possible farmers will soon be able to charge their own tractors renewably reducing their overheads.
Big Emission targets and climate change are the driving force behind anti-fossil fuel regulations coming in to effect in many cities. Research studies carried out suggest decarbonising the transport system can lead to economic advantages for business. One report stated that by switching vans and heavy goods vehicles over to electric or other alternative fuels could save up to £14 billion a year for British businesses. The report claims electric only vans run 13 pence per mile cheaper than diesel-fuelled vehicles, while HGVs are reported to be 38 pence per mile cheaper.
If possible, by switching all of Britain’s commercial vehicles over time to electric it would amount to a huge industry saving, hopefully benefiting the consumer in turn.