Friday, December 18, 2009

Warburtons Trial Low Emission Mercedes Truck

Econic First Custom Built Gas Tractor for Bakery Group
Shipping News Feature

UK – Britain’s largest bakery group, Warburtons, has become the first company in Britain to trial the new Mercedes-Benz Econic tractor unit. The vehicle features a low-entry cab with a low-emission, gas-powered engine that produces 20% less carbon dioxide and virtually no particulate pollutants in comparison to conventional diesel trucks.

The vehicle is also novel it that the Econic chassis is normally used as a refuse collection vehicle (RCV). The new tractor version being used by Warburtons is thus out to prove not just its environmental credentials but also the concept of the use of low-cabbed rigs.

The 4x2 Mercedes is on a six-month test with Warburtons on its national trunk runs that will see it used all over the country, after which the Company will have the option of taking the vehicle on a long-term lease if the trial successfully proves the truck is operationally viable and lives up to its emission promises.

Mark Sutcliffe, Warburtons Transport Manager, said that: “Over the next few months we will be monitoring the Econic's performance closely. The early signs are positive. The low-entry cab design, with its easy access and excellent visibility, has certainly been well received by our drivers.”

The company has already been operating gas-powered and dual-fuel trucks for ten years, with currently 25% of its 100 tractor units and a number of its 800 delivery trucks run wholly or partly on gas, and thus has great faith in the fuel for the future.

“Gas offers two key advantages,” Sutcliffe said. “First, of course, it produces fewer emissions, and therefore helps us to reduce the impact of our operations on the environment. But it is also a lot quieter too, which is good for us when we're operating in city centres or near residential areas.”

Mercedes Benz describes the Econic as “the most efficient RCV ever. [The] gas engine delivers zero smoke and particulates. This not only easily beats forthcoming Euro 5 requirements, but makes Econic the greenest RCV chassis ever.

“And at the end of its life, Econic also has the highest level of recyclability. How’s that for a lowest possible environmental footprint?”