Despite the fuel’s poor reputation and the decline in sales of diesel passenger vehicles, in the world of trucks, diesel continues to be king.
While there are several reasons for this, perhaps the most important is that a commercial vehicle that has to shift tens of tonnes on the motorway needs power: lots of power.
Which is why, for now, diesel engines are winning.
Leaving aside the cost of the fuel and the kilometres that a diesel can run compared to a petrol vehicle with the same number of litres in its tank (another advantage of diesel), diesel vehicles also have greater longevity and a longer service life.
This represents a major advantage for companies with truck fleets — we’re talking about up to a million kilometres more compared to a petrol engine.
Although other options may become available in the future, such as liquefied natural gas, which some experts say could end up leaving diesel behind, the reality is that, today, companies with commercial vehicles are still opting for diesel.
The same goes for the manufacturers, who offer few alternatives.
Data on fuel consumption of trucks
So, what is the diesel consumption per kilometer of trucks?
As you’d expect, it depends on its size and load, as well as whether it carries out its journeys through urban or interurban environments. Let’s settle on an average of around 30 or 40 litres of diesel every 100 km. For larger trucks with a payload around 23,500 kg the consumption can increase up to 38 litres per 100 kilometres. Smaller vehicles and those with a smaller load consume less. A small truck with a payload around 16,000 kg uses around 25 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres.
According to the Spanish observatory of road freight transport costs report (Observatorio de Costes del Transporte de Mercancías por Carretera) published in October 2019 by the Ministerio de Fomento (Spain’s Ministry of Public Works and Transport), an articulated vehicle with a payload of 25,000 kg that travels around 120,000 km annually will have a fuel expenditure of more than 40,700 euro.
It would use 35 litres every 100 kilometres.
Today, this represents approximately 30% of the total cost of the vehicle.
What about vans?
Vans are a case apart, since there is more choice and even electric models to address the delivery of goods within cities.
However, because of their smaller size and load, their diesel consumption is also reduced, averaging only about 11 litres per 100 kilometres.
If you would like to see how you can reduce the fuel consumption of your fleet, please visit the Webfleet Solutions website.