The Quest For Fuel Savings

June 2013, - Cover Story

by Deborah Lockridge, Editor-in-Chief - Also by this author

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In 2011, commercial trucks burned 37.2 billion gallons of diesel and 14.8 billion gallons of gasoline, according to the American Trucking Associations.

Diesel fuel is often the second highest expense for motor carriers after labor and can be as much as 20% of total operating costs.

Are you doing everything you can to cut your portion of that fuel bill?

Soon, the first phase of new federal greenhouse gas standards requiring improvements in fuel economy in new trucks will go into effect. Truck and engine makers are looking to technologies such as variable-speed vans, electric-drive turbos, high-performance DPFs, air injection boosting, clutched air compressors, waste heat collection and more to meet upcoming standards.

But smart fleets aren’t waiting for the newest generation of fuel-efficient trucks to roll off the line. They’re already using many strategies to save fuel.

On top of buying more aerodynamic and fuel-efficient trucks, they are investing in trailer aero add-ons and idle-reduction technologies, switching to fuel-efficient tires, “downspeeding” engine revs, limiting top speeds on trucks, using sophisticated analytics to track fuel use and incentivizing drivers and more.

In our annual fuel issue, we’ll take a closer look at some of the strategies you can use to save on your fuel bill. Because if you don’t, you can bet that your competitors will.

The Special Fuel Issue articles:

Are you on top of your fuel buying program?

DEF: Here to stay

Idle-reduction strategies

Automating transmissions for fuel savings

MPG for mediums

Making the case for fuel-efficient tires

Test Drive: Fuel-saving Ram 1500

Tomorrow's trailers

How technology can make you greener

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