The recent run-up in fuel prices for gasoline and diesel has commercial truck fleet managers and operators once again re-evaluating their fuel strategies and options. Last week, the Department of Energy reported diesel rose 5.3 cents to $4.157 a gallon — its fifth straight increase. This is highest price for diesel in about four-and-a-half years. Gasoline also rose significantly with nine consecutive increases and it has reached a high unseen since last October at $3.747. In periods like this it’s a good idea to focus on fundamentals when you are operating a fleet of trucks or even just one truck.
Tips to help with fleet fuel economy
- Retire outdated, less fuel efficient vehicles and upgrade to new units
- Ensure your fleet is properly maintained for maximum fuel efficiency and safety
- Ensure your vehicles are properly spec’d for the loads you are hauling and terrain
- Train your drivers in techniques to maximize MPG performance
- Invest in commercial telematics technology to help measure and track MPG performance
Penske Truck Leasing can help fleets devise a comprehensive fuel strategy and take proactive measures to help improve MPG performance. One area fleets should really consider is participating in the EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership.
Get proactive and join SmartWay
Penske Truck Leasing has been involved in the EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership since 2008 and it is driving significant results with regard to improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions within our customer’s trucks, our own rental fleet and within our expansive fleet of dedicated contract carriage vehicles used by our subsidiary Penske Logistics.
For example, since joining the EPA SmartWay program in 2008, our subsidiary Penske Logistics has improved fuel economy by 5 percent, reduced idle time by 16 percent and lowered CO2 emissions on a gram/ton-mile basis by 24 percent. Penske Logistics achieved $850,000 in annual savings after successful implementation of a route tracker program. Currently, Penske Logistics can measure a variety of driver behaviors via an electronic log, giving their managers the tools to coach improvement from their drivers. Penske’s logistics fleet was also able to reduce idling stop time and place a cap on speed via the use of governors. This has also reduced truck fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
Penske Truck Leasing helps a variety of leading commercial fleets with understanding and participating in the SmartWay program. Contact us if we can help you or your fleet with vehicles, maintenance, or the SmartWay program.
Download Penske’s SmartWay Profiles
- Penske Truck Leasing & Penske Truck Rental SmartWay Profile (PDF)
- Penske Logistics SmartWay Profile (PDF)
By Randy Ryerson