The Future Truck is not an unapproachable concept

IAV has developed the “Future Truck”, a commercial vehicle with alternative drives and optimized aerodynamics. Florian Brandau reports on the status of the project and applications beyond classical trucks.

Climate targets, customer expectations, capital: Several factors are causing movement in the market for commercial vehicles. Unburdened by traditional processes and existing model ranges, start-ups and logistics giants can bring new approaches to production maturity. IAV supports developments by both, new and established players as a systems integrator, focusing on modularization and sustainability.

«Thanks to better aerodynamics and the alternative powertrains, we are safely complying with future emission limits in all Future Truck variants.»

Florian Brandau — Director Business Development Commercial Vehicles E-Mobility at IAV

What is behind IAV's Future Truck?

Brandau: Under the name Future Truck, we designed a series of commercial vehicles with differ entpowertrain technologies such as battery-electric drive, fuel cell and hydrogen combustion engine. The design is innovative: For European truck drivers, the long hood at the front is certainly the most striking innovation. Thanks to changes in EU legislation, it can now be 80 to 90 centimeters long. This extension and other measures such as the more inclined and curved windshield reduce air resistance and thus increase the range. Thanks to better aerodynamics and the new drives, we are safely complying with future emission limits in all Future Truck variants.

How far has the project progressed?

Brandau: There is already a digital prototype in which systems and subsystems have been designed in great detail – for example, the electric motor or the active cooling and heating systems, which have to meet higher requirements in battery electric and fuel cell vehicles. There is now a separate industry for auxiliary components such as air compressors, air conditioning and hydraulics, and we integrated their components into our high-voltage electrical system. There are currently many ideas on how this basic platform could be used for further applications, for example in municipal vehicles or construction machinery.

What are you using the concept of the Future Truck for?

Brandau: First of all, the project is a good opportunity for us to think unconventionally and try out new things. But we also use the Future Truck in discussions with our customers, to identify potential for optimization or jointly develop new ideas. We are constantly refining the design. The key parameter is: The Future Truck is not an unapproachable concept but can be built with technologies available today.

The article appeared in automotion 02/2021, IAV’s automotive engineering trade magazine. Here you can order the automotion free of charge.

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