Operated by shared user distribution specialist Lenham Storage, the groundbreaking Atego BlueTec Hybrid employs a Euro 5 diesel engine and an electric motor, which can power the vehicle individually or in tandem. A dashboard display allows the driver to monitor the performance of the electric motor, confirming whether it is assisting the diesel engine during overtaking or storing energy during braking.
Depending on the application, Europe’s first series-produced hybrid truck offers fuel consumption savings of up to 15 per cent and a similar reduction in CO2 emissions.
Lenham Storage’s new 12-tonner is also equipped with a specially developed version of the Mercedes-Benz MSS (Motor Stop-Start) system, which boosts fuel economy simply by switching off the engine whenever the vehicle is in neutral and stationary for three seconds – for example in heavy traffic or at lights.
To further enhance these environmentallyfriendly credentials, the cab has a windcheating roof deflector and collar and a streamlined Bevan21 box body with curved roof, tapered sides and roof-mounted rear diffuser, manufactured from lightweight, recyclable panels.
Lenham Storage MD Keith Abrehart and his team liaised closely with the John Lewis Partnership, which operates John Lewis and Waitrose shops, and Mercedes-Benz UK before commissioning the new truck. It is assigned primarily to Waitrose store deliveries in London and makes between 12 and 15 ‘drops’ per day, six days a week. Justin Laney, fleet general manager at the John Lewis Partnership, commented: “We believe hybrid vehicles will have a valuable role to play in reducing carbon emissions and improving local air quality in urban environments. Using this vehicle for deliveries to our Waitrose shops will help us to assess the contribution that the latest hybrid technology can make to our own carbon reduction plans.”www.lenham.comwww.waitrose.com