In Madrid (Spain), the future of urban freight is starting to look a little bit greener. A prototype of a 12-tonne electric cargo vehicle has been created whose design is tailored to suit the urban freight conditions in the Spanish capital.
Developed as part of a CIVIATS ECCENTRIC measure, the prototype was first presented to the public at “VEM 2019”, the fifth edition of the most important electric vehicle exhibition in Madrid.
The vehicle was the result of collaboration between AVIA Engineering (a vehicle manufacturer), Madrid City Council, FM Logistics (a logistic partners) and UPM (Madrid Technical University).
The process to create the prototype started with an analysis of freight distribution models in Madrid and the most common vehicle typologies used. This involved reviewing the existing policy framework, including traffic regulations and restrictions and municipal freight plans.
Once the most suitable freight vehicle typologies for the existing distribution patterns were defined and those not offered currently by car manufacturers identified, the basic characteristics of the prototype were outlined. They related to size, load capacity, gross vehicle weight, and low-emission technology.
The engine and energy storage systems’ main features were defined following a topography analysis of the vehicle’s operating area and an assessment of the freight operator needs (i.e. range of the electric vehicle). The chassis design reflected the findings from the above.
The technological improvements in electric batteries since ECCENTRIC began in 2016 has enabled the development of a fully electric, zero-emission vehicle as opposed to a low-emission hybrid one.
The measure aims to reduce the CO2 and emissions associated with urban logistics fleets and promote clean vehicle uptake in the local freight community. The prototype also offers enhanced performance in terms of its load capacity and noiseless delivery.
The prototype is fully finished, designed according to the European Directives on homologation, and can be fully replicated. Once the validation and homologation tests are complete, the vehicle will operate out of Madrid’s new Consolidation Centre for electric vehicles, also conceived as part of CIVITAS ECCENTRIC.
FM Logistic will soon start trialling the vehicle, with the results used to fine-tune its design and efficiency. In turn, these improvements will promote its further uptake and commercialisation.
Read more on Madrid’s ECCENTRIC measures here.
Image credit: Sergio Fernández Balaguer
Author: Mariana Guerra