A large US grocery retailer has placed an initial order of more than $10 million USD for Wabash National’s next-gen light duty refrigerated truck body.
The order is expected to be delivered in the first half of 2022.
The vehicle features the manufacturer’s patented molded structural composite (MSC) technology and is designed to maximise cargo capacity and delivery productivity on a sub-10,000 GVWR chassis.
The purpose-built design facilitates a rack and tote system unique to the food distribution industry while creating easy access to separate temperature zones for fresh and frozen goods. The design features walk-in side doors that provide cargo access for the driver.
Additional engineered solutions for the refrigerated home delivery market are currently in development, as Wabash anticipates an increasing need from customers to compete in a changing logistics and distribution environment fueled by ecommerce disruption.
“Collaborating with our customers on innovative efforts to improve grocery home delivery has been a rewarding journey,” said Kevin Page, Wabash’s senior vice president – customer value creation. “As a visionary leader in our industry, our approach is different because we’re different. We begin all of our R&D efforts with our eyes on what customers will need in the future. Over the last year, we saw the need to deliver a sustainable solution that helps grocery retailers meet home delivery goals while reducing their carbon footprints. This is one way Wabash is fulfilling its purpose of Changing How the World Reaches You.”
MSC is reported to improve thermal efficiency by up to 30 per cent, reduces weight and provides a longer asset life.
The improvement in thermal efficiency, compared to conventional refrigerated product designs, coupled with a lightweight design allows the operator to achieve better fuel efficiency as the refrigeration unit draws less energy to maintain temperature. In addition, the lightweight properties of Wabash’s MSC technology can facilitate the adoption of an electric chassis in a refrigerated application.
“Our MSC technology has undergone careful development, including extensive on-road testing to document the composite material’s ability to maintain temperature efficiently, reduce weight and lengthen asset life,” said Page. “The time is right to scale production of this technology for the refrigerated transportation space. Customers are realising that sustainability initiatives help their bottom line, and Wabash is moving quickly to provide solutions that improve asset performance while reducing environmental impact.”
In other news, last month, Wabash announced a 10-year agreement with a leader in global aluminium and energy.