Fuel efficiency should be the main area of focus for the European Commission weights and dimensions proposal, says two road transport bodies.
Both the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the International Road Transport Union (IRU) have called for the proposed legislation to lead with improved overall fuel efficiency as a precondition for allowing increased vehicle length.
Voicing concerns of their members, the groups state that the 96/53/EC weights and dimensions policy should focus on promoting the use of fuel-saving technologies, rather than relying on improved aerodynamics.
Erik Jonnaert, ACEA Secretary General, said, “There are many more effective ways of reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions than entirely redesigning the cabin.
“The industry is committed to continuing to improve truck safety. However, for this, safety technologies that prevent accidents happening in the first place are the best way forward. A whole vehicle approach represents the best possible solution.”
IRU General Delegate to the EU, Michael Nielsen, said that flexibility must be given to freight operators to improve fuel efficiency, emissions, safety and comfort with as few restrictions as possible.
“I urge European decision-makers to reach an agreement that ensures the benefits we all wish to see are realised,” he says.
The proposal outlined by the European Commission states that any increase in vehicle length, including the vehicle cab, would have to include aerodynamic, safety and comfort improvements.