South West-based logistics firm Gregory Distribution recently put its first Volvo FH LNG tractor units into operation as a trial to test the sustainability of LNG to replace the diesel tractors and trucks in the more than 1,000-strong fleet. Beyond the environmental benefits, the firm cites Volvo’s approach to natural gas technology (using small amounts of diesel to initiate ignition of the air-fuel mixture) as a deciding factor to purchase the seven Volvo FH LNG models for its Bristol site.
The Power Of The Volvo G13C
Volvo’s G13C engine delivers the same 460 horsepower (343 kilowatts) and 2,300 newton-metres of torque as the diesel-only counterpart, with matching driveability, reliability and service intervals. The FH LNG also uses Volvo’s gas powertrain to provide engine braking just like a regular diesel—and without requiring a separate retarder, which adds weight and complexity.
“Put simply, an LNG-powered Volvo delivers the same power, performance and torque as a diesel. Plus, it’s a brand which is known to us and offers excellent dealer support nationwide,” says Gregory Distribution Head of Fleet, Property, and Procurement Andrew Chapple. “Driver acceptance is also crucial, and this was another area where the FH Globetrotter scored highly.”
More On The Volvo FH LNG
Volvo’s FH LNG lineup provides the same fuel efficiency as the diesel-powered equivalent, and because LNG is often cheaper, the trucks give operators the chance to reduce fuel costs.
“Initially we began exploring LNG as a way of reducing our carbon footprint, but the business case is also very strong,” Chapple says. “We’re deploying these trucks on high-mileage contracts covering between 150,000 to 250,000 kilometres per annum, and we’re confident they will help us to reduce total cost of ownership thanks to lower fuel costs.”
The operating range of the FH LNG makes the truck suitable for regional and long-haul transport, and there are three tank sizes available (115, 155, or 205 kg) for an operating range of up to 1,000 kilometres (621 miles).