Diesel has long been the favoured fuel choice for freight transportation, thanks to its cost-efficiency and reliability. In general, fleet operators tend to avoid risks and have historically been reluctant to invest in new, unproven technologies.
When it comes to diesel alternatives, a common complaint from major fleet operators was that truck makers were not bringing electrified offerings to market quickly enough. Major manufacturers appear to have received the message: Daimler and Volvo, for example, have already launched their first fully electric and hybrid electric medium and heavy-duty offerings, with further products planned.
However, analysts see a lengthy future in trucking for diesel. Indeed, KPMG believes that diesel’s reliability, efficiency and power will see it retain a heavy goods vehicle engine share of 80% up to 2030, and 55% by 2040. Therefore, improvements to standard powertrain vehicles will remain important fields of work, including engine refinements, vehicle aerodynamics and thermal efficiency boundaries.
In this report:
- Executive summary
- The race is on to replace diesel in trucking
- R&D advances extend diesel lifeline in trucking
- Engine makers need diverse solutions for next-generation trucking
- Supplier flexibility essential as trucking looks beyond diesel
- Truck industry still unclear on the future of long-haul propulsion
- Decarbonisation central to ongoing truck engine development
- Hydrogen fuel cell: a serious new competitor for diesel in trucking?
- Does battery electric offer enough to draw trucking companies away from diesel?
- Diesel’s persistence has not dulled fleet ambitions for electrification
- Despite Trump, US diesel trucking sector continues to clean up
‘Special Report: Does diesel have a future in trucking?’ provides insight from a range of automotive industry stakeholders, including:
- Association for Emissions Control by Catalyst
- Center for Automotive Research (CAR)
- Deutsche Post DHL
- Diesel Technology Forum
- Global Policy Group
- International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT)
- Jacobs Vehicle Systems
- Roland Berger
- XPO Logistics