At Volvo, we are continuously working to develop engines and vehicles that are more fuel-efficient, because, by reducing fuel consumption, we reduce exhaust emissions as well. Just to give one example: between 1980 and 2001, engine efficiency and the normal fuel consumption of a Volvo FH12 40 tonne truck on the road have improved by 25%.
However, besides vehicle and engine design the fuel consumption for goods vehicle transport is dependent on a number of factors, such as load factor, the driver, the equipment and weather conditions.
The Driver and the Owner
Whilst air resistance, rolling resistance and driveline specification will influence your fuel consumption, the load factor (i.e. the level of utilisation for an individual transport), is still the factor that creates the greatest divergence per tonne kilometre. Air resistance, rolling-resistance, driving method and road qualities also influence the fuel consumption. For a transport company, route planning and the loading factor are most significant for reducing fuel consumption.
Specification and Equipment
The train weight and the condition of the roads that the vehicle is driven on, determine which model is the most suitable. Stronger engines and higher train weight give higher fuel consumption. Calculated per tonne kilometre, however, fuel consumption is reduced with increased train weight. The different equipment and design also have an effect on air resistance and, consequently, fuel consumption. By making the right choice from the start fuel consumption can be by more than 10%.