It seems that Cardiff-based international freight forwarders, Freight Systems Express Wales (FSEW) is well ahead of the curve. The business is aiming to be carbon ‘net-zero’ before 2025 and their first major step is to invest in a pair of DAF CF tractor units – a trial before an order for a further 10 units is placed.
This is the UK’s first order for battery electric heavy tractor units, as well as a first order for DAF Trucks and its new zero-emissions product offering.
The order was rubberstamped last week at the ITT Hub exhibition and conference in Farnborough, where right-hand-drive, UK-ready DAF CF Electric and LF Electric trucks both made their public debuts.
Both models are now available to order in the UK, with models including a CF Electric 37.0-tonne GCW tractor-unit and a 27-tonne GVW 6×2 rigid, alongside an LF Electric at 19.0-tonnes GVW.
FSEW’s new DAF CF Electric represents the company’s first major step towards its objective of switching to a fleet-wide zero-emissions transport operation. In collaboration with decarbonisation specialists, Egnida and DAF Trucks’ own electric vehicle experts, the partnership embarked upon a month-long, end-to-end appraisal of all aspects of FSEW’s business, encompassing detailed journey analysis and comparison of potential vehicle and charging options, including ongoing support capability.
The results were used by Egnida to create a profitable low-carbon business model for FSEW to extract maximum benefits from the DAF CF Electric and provide a zero-emissions service demanded by FSEW’s own customers. Driven by their appetite for decarbonisation, the two DAF CF Electric trucks now on order form part of an ambitious plan for FSEW to replace more than 40 diesel vehicles with low-carbon alternatives.
Lower Carbon Fleet Renewal
Once the two CF Electrics are bedded-in, FSEW’s says it will introduce a further ten vehicles to reduce its carbon emissions by more than 50% in the next nine months. The company says its longer-term aim will be to hit ‘net-zero’ in two-and-a-half years.
“It’s a change of mindset,” said FSEW Managing Director, Geoff Tomlinson, “it’s a journey which began two-and-a-half years ago and one in which the whole business is engaged. If these trucks perform as they should – and we’re fully confident of that following the painstaking evaluation programme – then we’ll be in for another ten DAF CFs.
“DAF Trucks,” he said, “and the local dealer in Cardiff, Watts Truck & Van, have been very receptive to our requirements. Their can-do attitude has helped enormously in our journey here today and we’re very much looking forward to strengthening the relationship.
“As a business owner involved in road transport, and as a father of two small children, I have a huge opportunity, and an obligation, to make a positive impact on our environment and I’m enormously excited at the prospect of leading the switch to zero-emissions transport.”