ZF unveils electric trailer tech with OEM support

ZF is showcasing electrified trailer technologies at NUFAM in Karlsruhe, Germany, alongside BPW, Kässbohrer and Krone.

A 16 per cent fuel saving and reduction in carbon emissions is reported to be possible via the integration of ZF’s AxTrax 2 electric axle with modular battery system box for recuperation and traction support. An optional plugin variant can save as much as 40 per cent in fuel.

The trailer can also provide benefits for zero emission electrified heavy trucks by extending their range.

ZF’s Commercial Vehicle Solutions (CVS) division announced that it will cooperate with BPW to offer a fully integrated running gear system for trailer builders including ZF’s AxTrax 2 electric axle. Kässbohrer and Krone will also start to implement ZF´s pioneering electrification system into their platforms.

“Electrification for trailers is an innovative solution to decarbonise road freight transport in the very near future,” said Dr Bernd Meurer, responsible for the electric trailer program at ZF. “Instead of solely being pulled by the truck, the new approach provides additional traction while generating fuel savings, reducing CO2 emissions and improving sustainability.

“The fact that industry leaders are embracing our system demonstrates that we have taken the right concept approach in developing a lightweight and modular system that can be adapted to suit the diverse requirements and various applications of manufacturers and fleet operators.”

Thore Bakker, General Manager Business Unit Trailer Solutions & Mobility Services at BPW said: “Every trailer needs a chassis, suspension and braking technology that can be trusted. With our axles for 7.5-tonne trucks and the generator axles for reefers, we already have a lot of experience regarding the integration of electric drives. It therefore makes perfect sense that ZF, with expertise in drivelines, cooperates with BPW to offer a robust and highly engineered running gear solution with the AxTrax 2 axle for recuperation and traction support for semitrailers that can be easily assembled by trailer builders and is fully trusted by the fleets.”

Kässbohrer Board Member, İffet Türken, said: “Together to the next 125 years, we highlight the importance of a wide ecosystem of innovation and partnerships to advance the trailer industry towards sustainability. We support our industry with longer and heavier vehicles, our award winning intermodal product range and our already tested electrified reefers. We are committed to invest our proven innovation capability, engineering competence to advance the technical integration challenges of the new system safely and efficiently. We look forward to our cooperation with ZF and all our partners furthering electrification application to include all sectors of transport business.”

Dr Stefan Binnewies, Board Member of the Krone Group, said: “ZF and Krone share similar attributes like commitment to quality, sustainability, and innovative technology. Very early on, Krone investigated and invested in possible options for trailers to provide electrified traction support as a way towards meeting decarbonisation targets of road transport. We are happy to see that well-established partners of the industry like ZF and BPW team up to support the transformation to more sustainable logistics by offering innovative solutions that we as trailer OEMs can integrate into our Trailer Systems. At Krone we are convinced that we can only meet the challenges of the future together – generating the best solutions for our customers.”

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