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Scania Testing Boat-tail That Can Cut Truck Fuel Consumption by 2%

Scania has begun practical tests of a rear air deflector known as a boat-tail, which can reduce fuel consumption by up to 2%, which corresponds to an annual saving of 1,200 liters (317 gallons US) of fuel and 3 tonnes of CO2 emissions for a truck running 200,000 km (124,000 miles) a year.

The boat-tail. Click to enlarge.

The boat-tail is mounted on a normal three-axle semitrailer for European long-haulage. The solution does not encroach on cargo space and can also be retrofitted on existing trailers. The length of the vehicle combination increases by 30 cm, which is equivalent to the extra length permitted for a taillift or other loading equipment according to the European Union’s Directive 97/27 EC.

The tests are limited to Sweden and Denmark while we await final word on how road and traffic authorities in the Netherlands and Germany view our interpretation and application of the EU directive.

—Anders Gustavsson, Managing Director of the Scania Transport Laboratory

A recently introduced EU proposal would amend the current Directive 97/27 EC to allow trailers to be equipped with a rear air deflector that lengths the vehicle combination by 30 cm.

The Scania Transport Laboratory is a wholly owned subsidiary of Scania that tests and evaluates vehicle characteristics and performance in commercial road haulage.



Although the law limits the extension to 30 cms, it would be interesting to test at 30 60 100 and 150 cms to see what happens to the efficiency.

Then draw a graph and calculate the fuel savings if you went to 100 cms (say).

Go back to the EU commission with this and see will they change the laws to allow larger extensions (assuming you save more fuel as you extend the extension !).


Good point mahonj. The extension could fold in for city traffic at lower speed.


Actually Scania has already done tests on a longer boat tail; and fuel consumption was reduced by 7.5%
In theory, a full boat tail could save 10-15%

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