Schluesseluebergabe Neuster Cng Truck C Hoyer Group

HOYER increases focus on alternative drives

Aug. 27, 2021
German logistics specialist expands truck fleet with LNG and CNG engines, and uses electric stacker fleets

CO2 footprint reduction is a declared sustainability target of the Hamburg, Germany-based HOYER Group. As well as modernizing its fleet, the international logistics specialist also increasingly focuses on new drive systems with energy sources such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) and compressed natural gas (CNG), together with electric stacker truck fleets.

Now HOYER says it is “progressively expanding” its fleet with new LNG tractor units and CNG trucks.

The company currently has 25 gas-powered trucks in use, 12 LNG and 13 CNG trucks, and the latest unit will be added in August. The reason for expanding its fleet is the interest from HOYER and its industrial customers in sustainable operations. A major aim of the HOYER Group is the greatest possible CO2 footprint reduction in all logistics processes.

Natural-gas-fueled trucks currently are used to transport gas and petroleum products, HOYER said. The first unit was obtained in 2018, and other models have followed since then.

“We want to expand this fleet even further,” said Anna Krüger, head of business development gas of the HOYER Group. “Our customers are also very interested in making progress together on the topic of sustainability.

“Reducing the CO2 footprint concerns us all, which is why we also attempt to offer CNG, LNG or biofuel as alternatives wherever these are possible, sensible and available.”

Compared to diesel, engines powered by liquefied natural gas cause about 10 to 20% less CO2 emissions, and organic LNG reduces emissions by as much as 90%. However, the service station network for alternative energies, which has still not expanded to full coverage, currently impedes the use of these trucks, although a further expansion of the organic LNG network also is expected in the near future, HOYER said.

Steady improvement in the service station infrastructure, together with the toll exemption still applying in Germany, strengthen the trend toward fleet enlargement in this direction, in spite of significantly higher procurement and maintenance costs compared to diesel counterparts.

Whereas LNG is used for high-power tractor units, the majority of the CNG trucks in HOYER are transporters in the class up to 7.5 tonnes (8.3 U.S. tons).

CNG also is a real option for short distances in heavy goods transport: A CNG tractor unit will be used for petroleum products logistics for short journeys in the Great Hamburg region from mid-August onward.

As well as gas-fueled engines, the HOYER Group also focuses on electrically-powered engines. Most of the logistics specialist’s fleet of electric stackers are fitted with lithium-ion technology (Li-ION), and are used especially for on-site logistics. Li-ION technology eliminates costly, time-consuming battery changes, since these batteries can be given intermediate recharges even during short work breaks. Built-in Li-ION batteries have an average lifetime of 10 years.

HOYER also is watching developments in the use of hydrogen as an energy carrier.

“We expect that hydrogen-fueled trucks will also play a part in future, since they operate without any emissions,” said Johan Witteveen, procurement manager. “What is not yet available, however, is their dangerous goods approval, which is essential for HOYER.”

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