Skoda, the Czech automaker popular in India for its premium models like the Skoda Rapid and Octavia, has pressed four vehicles powered by CNG into service at its main plant in the city of Mlad Boleslav. The trucks are being used to transport goods within the factory site, and another vehicle is going to be used in the supply chain process. The CNG drive of these trucks helps reduce emissions and transport costs significantly, and Skoda plans to use ‘Gigaliner’ trucks on select routes later on, helping reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 200 tonnes every year. Also Read - Skoda Octavia RS to Return to India Next Year, 200 Models on Their Way Also Read - Volkswagen sets sales record in 2018 despite headwinds
Michael Oeljeklaus, Skoda Board Member for Production and Logistics, said, “As part of our overall social responsibility, we have traditionally devoted great attention to developing environmentally friendly logistics solutions.” He added, “With the CNG-powered lorries, Skoda is making a further contribution to a sustainable company.” The four trucks were inducted into service after a two-month trial period, and are now in service in daily operations at the company headquarters. Another CNG truck has been used for transport services to and from Str nad Nisou, 120 km from Mlad Boleslav. The truck runs the distance between the two places 12 times every week, and saves 16 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions every year over a conventional diesel-powered truck. Also Read: Skoda Octavia Onyx Limited Edition teased; India launch soon Also Read - Wealthy not above greed, all have fallen prey to dowry evil: Court
The trucks were highly successful during the trial period, when they were fould to have reduced fuel costs by 30 percent and nitric oxide emissions by 80-90 percent, as well as carbon monoxide emission by 90 percent. An average of 50 kg or less CNG is consumed per 100 km, which results in an up to 95 percent reduction in particulate emissions. Skoda’s Gigaliners will be used across select routes to transport goods between suppliers and the company. The trucks are up to 25 m in length and can transport 50 percent more than a conventional truck. This results in fewer weekly trips between Mlad Boleslav and Rokycany, and ultimately 250,000 fewer kilometers on a yearly basis.
Skoda is also increasingly using battery-powered on-site transporters at its main plant. As a pilot project, it has fitted an eletric tractor with two trailers with solar panels that charge the stored lithium-ion batteries while the tractor is in motion.The tractors run around 70 km on a daily basis, and Skoda expects solar power to reduce annual energy usage by around 10 percent. If the trial is successful, the Czech automaker will add solar technology to more of its vehicles. Skoda’s other plants already use 18 battery-powered tractors. Also Read: Fastest ever Skoda Octavia RS 245 revealed ahead of Geneva Motor Show 2017 debut
These initiatives are part of Skoda’s environmental activities under its ‘GreenFuture’ strategy that includes several elements, such as ‘GreenProduct’, ‘GreenRetail’ and ‘GreenLogistics’. GreenProduct deals with developing more environment-friendly vehicles in terms of recyclability, mileage and materials. GreenRetail promotes eco-friendly operations at Skoda workshops and dealerships. GreenFactory includes activities to reduce resource usage during production processes. GreenLogistics is aimed at actions to promote more sustainable logistics solutions. Skoda expects most of its suppliers near Bohemian plants to deliver components exclusively using trucks that use alternative fuel sources.