Iveco Z Truck (Zero-Impact Concept) – 2016 IAA Hannover
Italian CV maker Iveco has unveiled its future long-distance haulage ‘Z‘ (Zero-impact) concept truck at the on-going 2016 IAA commercial vehicles show, Hannover. The concept truck revolves around green energy and autonomous driving, and tries to break away from contemporary trucking constraints with new thinking on alternative energy, ergonomics, and vehicular communication. The company has protected the truck’s novelty with 29 patents. The ‘Zero’ tag in the truck’s moniker signifies zero CO2 emissions, zero accidents, and zero stress and waste of time for the driver.
Let’s go one by one. The goal of achieving zero CO2 emissions is typical of any future truck, so you might expect an electric drivetrain with batteries and plug-in system. But that’s where the Z concept truck is gonna trick you – it is using a new generation LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) engine that can run on Bio-methane (refined biogas) with a power output of 460 hp and 2,000 Nm torque. The engine is paired to a 16-speed automated transmission with Powershift in higher gears.
Further, the concept truck features Michelin ‘X-line’ energy-efficient tyres that can save up to one litre of fuel per 100 kms. New aluminium-made multi-layer insulated gas tanks with reduced heat radiation help achieve better mileage of 2,200 km for 1,200 litres of full capacity. And to strengthen energy efficiency, there is an on-board Rankine Cycle Waste Heat Recovery system, which recovers energy from exhaust gas as a heat source. With the Bio-LNG engine using up to 33% less fuel, together with every other aforesaid efficient mechanics, the concept truck delivers virtually zero CO2 emissions.
The goal number two of achieving zero accidents is based on the concept truck’s active and preventive safety systems including a full set of sensors all around the vehicle, along with a host of automated driving technologies. The third goal of reducing the driver’s work time and stress levels is interesting. The Z truck allows the driver to personalise the cab layout as per his/her driving and other utility needs. The autonomous technologies are gonna take a fair share of manual driving, so that the driver can now prioritise his job and travel time accordingly.
Once parked, the truck now becomes a customised lounge for the driver – he/ she can reconfigure the interiors of the cab and customise living space. Features like a foldable bed, shower, kitchen, fridge, sink and entertainment wall can be pulled-on, thanks to the modular design and engineering of the cabin. These innovations may significantly revolutionise the driver’s space in the future, also reducing their role in the driving for greater efficiency and safety, thereby relieving them from the shackles of stress-full trucking.