|The Newton in TNT livery.
TNT Express and TNT Logistics, in partnership with Smith Electric Vehicles, has unveiled the world’s first high performance 7.5-tonne zero emission electric vehicles—both Newton models (earlier post)—due to go into service in London.
The Newton uses four Zebra 278V batteries to provide power for an Azure Dynamics drivetrain at speeds of up to 50 mph. Fully charged, the vehicle has a range of 130 miles. It can be re-charged on board or through domestic mains or a standard three-phase socket.
The Newton’s body panels are built from an ultra-light, fully recyclable composite material manufactured by Omnia. This substantially reduces body weight and increases the payload capacity of 4,000kg.
TNT Express’s vehicle will operate from the company’s Barking depot, while the TNT Logistics model will be based at its Starbucks operation in Basildon, Essex.
If the green trial proves successful, TNT will consider adding 200 additional zero emission vehicles to its fleet to serve in other urban locations in the UK. This would result in significantly reduced controlled and CO2 emissions.
TNT has an overall rating of 84 out of a possible 100 on the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, the highest recorded score in the Industrial Transportation category in 2006.
We are living in times of great change and the launch of this vehicle represents what TNT is striving for in the 21st Century—to be the cleanest, greenest express, mail and logistics company on the planet.
Global warming is the biggest issue the world is facing today. As a transportation company TNT contributes to this problem. That is why we are constantly looking for ways in which to minimize our CO2 emissions. State-of-the-art electrical vehicles, like the Newton, are a very good alternative to vehicles using fossil fuel, especially in urban areas.
We have every confidence in the technology and, if everything goes to plan it could well pave the way for many, many more similar vehicles for TNT throughout the world.—Peter Bakker, TNT CEO
The decision to use the zero emission unit came after months of detailed research and analysis focusing on the environmental and cost benefits of the vehicle. Despite deriving 15% of all its electricity requirements from renewable sources, TNT is also seeking to implement a carbon emissions offsetting arrangement in respect of the ground-breaking vehicle, further evidence of the company’s commitment to the preservation of the environment in which it operates.
This is a huge step forward for our fleet. Not only is this one of the most environmentally friendly vehicles on the market, there are also potential significant cost savings in the long-term.
This vehicle is exempt from the London congestion charge—approximately £1,750 a year—incurs no road tax and is battery-driven. It costs just £25 a week to recharge the battery as opposed to £110 spent on fuel for a diesel vehicle.—Tom Bell, Managing Director TNT Express Services UK & Ireland
Smith Electric Vehicles is the world’s largest manufacturer of road-going commercial electric vehicles.
TNT Express Services is the leading business-to-business express delivery company in the UK & Ireland. With an annual turnover in excess of £750m the company employs 10,600 people in the UK and Ireland, operating more than 3,500 vehicles from over 70 locations.