At the Great American Trucking Show in Dallas, Volvo Trucks North America unveiled its Fuelwatch initiative designed to help fleet managers and truck operators achieve maximum fuel economy.
Volvo describes Fuelwatch as a comprehensive approach to get the most out of each gallon of fuel, encompassing vehicle spec’ing, maintenance, performance monitoring and driver behavior. A major element of Fuelwatch will be driver training; beginning in early 2009, Volvo says it will have driver trainers in each of its five sales regions to work directly with fleets and their drivers to teach how to increase fuel economy.
“Our customers are telling us ‘I want Volvo to give me the most fuel efficient truck possible. We need every bit of help we can get’ to survive the escalation in diesel prices,” said Scott Kress, Volvo’s senior vice president of sales and marketing. “But we realized we can give them far more than the truck. Fuelwatch is our way to bring Volvo’s deep knowledge of fuel economy to customers in a way that delivers these benefits throughout the entire life and operation of their trucks. Using less fuel is good for customers, and it’s also good for the environment.”
Kress said that based on Volvo’s experience, customers who fully utilize the Fuelwatch tools and techniques can significantly lower their operating costs by addressing the critical areas that affect fuel economy. “Fuelwatch allows customers to take the best specifications and use them most efficiently and most productively to drive success,” he said. “We know from our experience, however, that even the best best-spec’d and maintained truck can deliver poor fuel economy if the driver lacks the knowledge and training to use it efficiently. The driver has the biggest impact – good or bad – on fuel economy.”
Volvo says the Fuelwatch initiative has four major elements: