DHL aims for cleaner and quieter cities with launch of gas-powered concept vehicle

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Leon Daniels, managing director of Surface Transport at Transport for London (left) and Tim Slater managing director of Transport UK & Ireland at DHL (right) at the truck launch

Leon Daniels, managing director of Surface Transport at Transport for London (left), and Tim Slater, managing director of Transport UK & Ireland at DHL, at the truck launch

DHL has launched its new CNG-powered concept truck for use in towns and cities at Quiet Cities, the first global summit focused on enabling quieter deliveries of freight in urban environments.

The vehicle combines new engine and ignition technology with pioneering cab safety features to support the journey towards cleaner, safer, quieter, urban transport.

DHL has designed its new truck to be considerate of the environment in which it operates. The inclusion of a new spark ignition ‘Otto Cycle’ engine, which can reduce engine noise by up to 50% when compared to a standard diesel engine, is crucial for making quiet out of hours deliveries in urban environments.

As part of DHL’s work to use more environmentally friendly vehicles, the new truck uses Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Bio-Gas to significantly reduce its CO2 footprint and harmful pollutants. Compared to a standard Euro 6 diesel vehicle, the vehicle produces 68% less Particulate Matter (PM) and 39% less Nitrogen Oxides (NOx), which is harmful to humans and damaging to the environment.

To ensure the truck is suitable for populated, urban environments DHL has included a range of innovative safety features in the vehicle. Identifying the most dangerous blind spots around vehicles, DHL has designed the new vehicle cab to ensure vulnerable road users are more visible to drivers. To extend the field of driver vision the new vehicle includes:

·       A low entry, high visibility cab, which lowers the line and field of vision

·       Glass panels on the near side door to extend driver sight

·       A 360 ‘Birds Eye View’ camera with in-cab display and hard drive recording

Claire Perry, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Department of Transport, said: “As cities and town centres become more populous, commercial transport companies face the difficult task of making journeys safer, cleaner and quieter. The new concept vehicle from DHL is a positive step in the right direction to addressing this issue and I encourage industry-wide adoption of the latest technology to ensure the highest standards of road safety.”

Tim Slater, managing director, Transport at DHL Supply Chain UK & Ireland, said: “As part of DHL’s commitment to making transport safer, cleaner and quieter I’m incredibly proud to see our new concept-vehicle launched.

“While I truly believe this vehicle will be transformational in driving industry towards a better future, DHL will continue to invest in innovative vehicle technology, alternative fuels, accident prevention systems and driver training to ensure we’re always delivering the best service for our customers and supporting the UK’s environmental health.”