Truck Fuel Efficiency: Trends, Challenges and Emerging Technologies

  • ID: 3744069
  • Report
  • 96 pages
  • Autelligence
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Market Drivers, Fuel Price Trends, New and Emerging Fuel Efficiency Technologies


  • Daimler
  • Hino
  • Isuzu
  • Iveco
  • MAN
  • Navistar
  • MORE
Truck fuel efficiency is a key issue for truck manufacturers and suppliers, impacting all parts of heavy commercial vehicles and their operation. Growing oil demand has led to considerable volatility in fuel prices since the beginning of the 21st century. Although crude oil and automotive fuel prices are low at the time of writing, they are still around twice what they were during the 1990s.

Consequently, while fuel costs accounted for around 10% of freight costs a decade or two ago, they have been as high as 35% during recent years, and operators now regard 30% as a benchmark.

“We have proven [that] if we want to significantly further reduce both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in road transport, we need to look beyond just the engine. We must widen our focus to include tires, semi-trailer and other key components.” – Wolfgang Bernhard, Daimler

The Truck Fuel Efficiency Report outlines the commercial, political and legislative environment, tracks the key technologies, and reports on the status of their development. The report pulls together a number of different perspectives and looks at developments around the entire vehicle to provide an overview of the overall trends in this very important area. With 96 pages and 60 tables and figures, it is an essential guide to this critical area.

Key areas covered include:

- Market drivers and challenges – regulations fuel prices, incentives
- Current and developing engine technologies – from stop-start and aftertreatment to new combustion technologies and alternative engine designs
- Drivetrain technologies – transmission types, axles, hybrid drivetrains, manufacturer strategies
- Aerodynamics – airtabs, trailer shapes, grilles
- Tyres – pressure monitoing systems, tyre technology
- Efficient ancillaries
- New and future technologies – connectivity and electronic control, autonomous driving, waste heat recovery, freewheeling, power lubrication

About the author

Mike Murphy B.Sc., M.Phil.(Hons.I) has had a lifelong interest in things automotive including owning and racing a range of motorcycles and track cars. He began regularly contributing to automotive publications in his native New Zealand during the 1990s and in 2004 he became a news editor for a leading UK auto industry publication. He began researching and writing automotive technology sector reports the following year and has had around 50 technology reports and numerous features published by four UK-based automotive and truck industry publications.

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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  • Daimler
  • Hino
  • Isuzu
  • Iveco
  • MAN
  • Navistar
  • MORE
Chapter 1: Executive summary

Chapter 2: Market drivers

2.1 Regulations
2.1.1 Fuel economy The European Union The United States Japan
2.1.2 Global harmonisation
2.1.3 Idling reduction
2.1.4 Combination length
2.2 Fuel prices
2.3 Energy security
2.4 Fuel savings
2.5 Incentives
2.5.1 North America
2.5.2 Europe

Chapter 3: Market challenges

3.1 Costs
3.2 Diversity of specification and design
3.3 Development time frames
3.4 Calibration of measurements
3.5 Total oil consumption by heavy commercial vehicles
Chapter 4: Progress to date and future targets
Chapter 5: Engine technologies
5.1 Forced induction
5.2 Fuel injection
5.3 Variable valve actuation
5.4 Exhaust after-treatment
5.5 Turbo-compounding
5.6 Stop-start
5.7 Optimised engine management parameters
5.8 New combustion technologies
5.8.1 Homogeneous charge compression ignition
5.8.2 Reactivity controlled compression ignition
5.8.3 Gasoline direct-injection compression ignition
5.9 Alternative engine designs
5.9.1 Opposed-piston designs
5.9.2 Detonation Cycle Gas Turbine
5.9.3 RadMax Rotary Turbine Engine
5.9.4 Scuderi slit cycle engine

Chapter 6: Drivetrain technologies

6.1 Transmissions
6.1.1 Manual transmissions
6.1.2 Planetary automatic transmissions
6.1.3 Automated manual transmissions
6.1.4 Dual-clutch transmissions
6.1.5 ZF TraXon modular automated transmissions
6.1.6 Continuously-variable transmissions
6.2 Drive axles
6.3 Hybrid drivetrains
6.3.1 Daimler
6.3.2 Hino
6.3.3 Iveco
6.3.4 Isuzu
6.3.5 MAN
6.3.6 Navistar
6.3.7 Paccar
6.3.8 Scania
6.3.9 Volvo Group
6.3.10 Trailer hybrid system

Chapter 7: Aerodynamics
7.1 Airtabs
7.2 Trailer shapes
7.3 Side skirts
7.4 Trailer tails
7.5 Under-body fairings
7.6 Cavity covers
7.7 Articulating grille

Chapter 8: Tyres
8.1 Tyre pressure monitoring systems
8.2 Automatic tyre inflation systems
8.3 Low rolling-resistance tyres

Chapter 9: Efficient ancillaries
9.1 Electric power steering
9.2 Electric air conditioning
9.3 Declutching air compressor
9.4 Radiator cooling fans
9.5 Engine coolant pumps
9.6 Turbo-generator

Chapter 10: Other technologies

10.1 Waste heat recovery
10.2 Weight reduction
10.2.1 Steel
10.2.2 Cast iron
10.2.3 Aluminium
10.3 Freewheeling retarder
10.4 Lubrication
10.5 Lighting
10.6 Auxiliary power units
10.7 Connectivity and electronic control
10.7.1 Intelligent powertrain management
10.7.2 Predictive cruise control
10.7.3 Telematics and driver coaching
10.7.4 Autonomous driving and truck platooning

Table of figures
Figure 1: Cost structure of long haul truck operations, 2014
Figure 2: Cushing, OK WTI crude oil spot price (US$/barrel), 1986 to December 2015
Figure 3: US diesel fuel price (US$/gallon) January 2007 to December 2015
Figure 4: Different technologies pursued in the US SuperTruck programme
Figure 5: Energy losses in a heavy-duty, long-haul truck
Figure 6: Holset variable nozzle turbocharger
Figure 7: Ford PowerStroke cobra head turbocharger exhaust
Figure 8: Eaton Twin Vortices Series compressor rotors
Figure 9: Antonov two-speed supercharger
Figure 10: Controlled Power Technologies electric supercharger
Figure 11: Variable valve actuation on the 6.7-litre Cummins B-Series diesel engine
Figure 12: Fiat MultiAir VVA system
Figure 13: Valeo e-valve system
Figure 14: Mechanical turbo-compounding on the Volvo D12D
Figure 15: Criterion emissions from RCCI engine by % gasoline
Figure 16: Napier Deltic opposed piston engine cutaway
Figure 17: EcoMotors OPOC engine
Figure 18: TourEngine split-cycle engine design
Figure 19: Turbine Truck Engines Detonation Cycle Gas Turbine engine
Figure 20: 540hp prototype of the Detonation Cycle Gas Turbine Engine
Figure 21: RadMax Rotary Turbine 42hp prototype
Figure 22: Scuderi split-cycle engine design
Figure 23: Eaton UltraShift PLUS
Figure 24: Wabco transmission automation module
Figure 25: Mitsubishi Fuso Duonic transmission
Figure 26: AVL DCT concept
Figure 27: ZF TraXon fuel consumption compared to AS Tronic and Ecosplit transmissions
Figure 28: Partial (left) and full (right) toroidal transmission systems
Figure 29: Torotrak IVT variator
Figure 30: GCI series CVT schematic
Figure 31: VMT Technologies positively engaged IVT
Figure 32: Mack Trucks 6×2 liftable pusher axle
Figure 33: Mitsubishi Fuso Canter Eco Hybrid
Figure 34: Iveco EuroCargo hybrid
Figure 35: Kenworth T370 hybrid truck
Figure 36: Aeroserve Airtabs on a tractor
Figure 37: Don-Bur teardrop trailer
Figure 38: Stemco Transtex Skirt and TrailerTail
Figure 39: SmartTruck TopKit
Figure 40: Airman Wingman system
Figure 41: SmartTruck UT-6 trailer undertray systems
Figure 42: StormBlok EkoStinger
Figure 43: Don-Bur Aeris extending trailer bulkhead
Figure 44: FlowBelow AeroKit
Figure 45: ContiPressureCheck display
Figure 46: Aperia Technologies Halo Tyre Inflator
Figure 47: Michelin X One XDA (Drive Axle) single wide tyre
Figure 48: Horton Modulator RCV250 variable fan drive
Figure 49: Caterpillar turbo-generator
Figure 50: Eaton schematic of three-stage Rootes type expander
Figure 51: Heavy-duty diesel oil viscosity trends, 2008–2021
Figure 52: Truck Lite LED headlamps
Figure 53: Thermo King TriPac APU
Figure 54: EnerMotion Hyper APU
Figure 55: Idle Air cab climate control and electrification system
Figure 56: How the Volvo Trucks I-See system works
Figure 57: Peloton truck platooning test

Table of tables
Table 1: Japanese fuel economy standards for trucks
Table 2: Japanese fuel economy standards for tractors
Table 3: Efficiency gains from 2010 to 2015

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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- Daimler
- Hino
- Isuzu
- Iveco
- Navistar
- Paccar
- Scania
- Trailer hybrid system
- Volvo Group

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown