With the introduction of thirty Volvo FH 460 LNG 4x2 tractor units, H.Z. Logistics is taking a huge step in greening its truck fleet. The logistics service provider opted for Volvo LNG trucks because of the environmental benefits and the favourable business case. The trucks were supplied by Volvo Trucks-dealer Volvo Group Truck Center Maasdijk.
Full-service logistics service provider H.Z. Logistics will mainly be using the Volvo LNG trucks for conditioned transport of potato, fruit and vegetable and floriculture products for clients in central and southern Europe. The company has a high focus on sustainability. ‘In the period up to 2024 we want to reduce our carbon footprint by 25 per cent’, stated general director Barry Zuiderwijk. ‘We’re already doing this by using intermodal solutions including rail to transport our volumes, but we were still seeking a sustainable solution for long-distance transport by road. LNG trucks are currently the most sustainable alternative to diesel and moreover are the only alternative that is currently available for long-distance transport. We wanted to make real headway with this, which is why we ordered thirty trucks. With a Volvo LNG truck we can reduce our CO2 emissions by 20 per cent compared with a diesel truck. Another aspect is that this greening is appreciated by our clients.’
The best business case
Following an extensive comparison, H.Z. Logistics chose thirty Volvo LNG trucks that were delivered in stages over the past six months. Zuiderwijk: ‘We analysed everything and it quickly became apparent that the Volvo LNG trucks have the best business case. That’s due to a combination of factors. First of all, LNG is cheaper than diesel and the Volvo LNG trucks have an excellent fuel consumption rate, which also proved to be correct in reality. Our diesel trucks consume around 28 litres per 100 kilometres. With LNG trucks we consume 20.5 kilo per 100 kilometres. The Maut exemption in Germany was the decisive factor for us to invest in LGN trucks.’
Maximum benefit from Maut exemption
H.Z. Logistics has established a decoupling system so that the Volvo LNG trucks cover as many kilometres as possible in Germany. ‘We do a lot of transport destined for central and southern Europe’, explained Zuiderwijk. ‘We’re scheduling our operations now so that we decouple trailers on this route in eastern and southern Germany. We drive an average 250,000 km per year with the LNG trucks and some 75 per cent of these kilometres are driven in Germany. This ensures that we make the most of the Maut exemption.’
For comfort while travelling the trucks are equipped with the spacious Globetrotter XL cabin with two beds, microwave, fridge, adjustable steering wheel with tilting steering column (neck tilt) and the intelligent cooling system I-ParkCool. H.Z. Logistics also places a high priority on safety, especially as the drivers often drive at night. That was the reason to opt for the Active Safety package, which includes advanced safety systems such as Forward Collision Warning with emergency brake function, Adaptive Cruise Control, Driver Alert Support, Lane Change Support and Lane Keeping Support.
Zuiderwijk is extremely pleased with the Volvo LNG truck performance. ‘These are super-trucks in terms of consumption, reliability and driving comfort. We’ve also signed a maintenance contract for all trucks so that we don’t have to worry about this ourselves. And we’ve opted for Real Time Monitoring.’ With Real Time Monitoring, the essential components of the trucks can be monitored and analysed remotely 24 hours a day. This enables predictions to be made of when problems are likely so that preventive measures can be taken. This avoids unplanned breakdowns and maximises a truck’s availability.
Zuiderwijk was delighted with the excellent guidance he received from Volvo Group Truck Center. ‘Both in terms of specifying the trucks as well as the delivery. For instance, all drivers who drive with the LNG trucks have been given tank instructions and associated certificates. What I also noticed is that Volvo Group Truck Center is really constructive in coming up with ideas, for example in how we can save fuel.’ The trucks are now equipped with I-Cruise and the smart Predictive Cruise Control I-See, which analyses the route and modifies the driving and gear changing behaviour for optimal driving performance and fuel efficiency. I-Cruise helps keep a constant speed and adapts this where necessary, ensuring low fuel consumption.
About H.Z. Logistics
H.Z. Logistics was founded in 1982 and has since grown from small transport company to a full-service logistics service provider, specialising in intermodal, international groupage transport of floriculture, potato, vegetable and fruit products, distribution, shipping supplies and warehousing. The H.Z. Logistics fleet comprises 450 trucks and 625 semi-trailers. As well as the head office in De Lier in the Netherlands, the company has offices in Poland, Great Britain, Romania and Austria.