ACT Research: Transition to New Powertrains/Fuels Means Planning for CV Fleets

According to the recently released N.A. Commercial Vehicle On-Highway Engine OUTLOOK from ACT Research and Rhein Associates, discussion continues about how internal combustion engines will meet future emissions standards for the latter part of this decade, even as legislation accelerates the push to electrification. The report noted that this includes the Biden administration’s hope of enabling electric vehicle adoption through the expansion of charging infrastructure.

“Last-mile delivery fleets with a vested interest in either being ‘green’ and/or reducing total cost of ownership will install private charging infrastructure,” Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst at ACT Research, said. “Unlike distribution-related fleets, irregular-route long-haul operators do not have the luxury of returning home every night to recharge, so these fleets will not benefit to the same degree as shorter length-of-haul fleets.”

“While there is increasing interest in electric vehicles, the transition to new vehicles and fuels/powertrains requires long-term planning on the part of prospective owners, and infrastructure development requires significant investment and time to implement,” Andrew Wrobel, senior powertrain analyst at Rhein Associates, said. “There will be new suppliers and vendors, new operational practices and re-oriented business plans to consider as well.”

When asked about natural gas vehicles, Wrobel said, “Demand for natural gas-powered trucks has shown modest growth, with further slow growth anticipated.”

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