Software helps Fife Council refuse collection fleet save thousands in fuel costs

Fife Council’s fleet operations department

Fife Council has reported fuel savings of 8.85% by retrofitting specialist software to two of its Mercedes-Benz Econic refuse collection fleet.

Two 26-tonne, 6x2 Mercedes-Benz Econis trucks from Fife Council’s fleet operations department took part in a six-month, 21,000km trial conducted from January to June this year. The two vehicles use Allison 3000 SeriesTM 6-speed fully automatic transmissions and the savings were made by updating them to use Allison Transmission’s latest FuelSense 2.0 software.

As a result of these fuel economy improvements, Fife Council has decided to retrofit another 11 refuse collection vehicles with FuelSense 2.0 software, in addition to ordering another 11 vehicles for delivery by January next year. This fleet of 24 vehicles are expected to cut the council’s expenditure on diesel by about £42,000 per year, and its CO2 emissions by almost 124 tonnes.

Sandy Anderson, service manager, waste operations at Fife Council, said: “This trial has been a great partnership between Fife Council, Allison Transmission and Mercedes-Benz. As a result, we have strong data that shows how upgrading to the latest technology, proven on our own vehicles and roads, can deliver better value for the tax-payers of Fife.

“A lot of fuel saving claims are made from different corners of the industry and we are happy to stand behind this significant 8.85% fuel economy improvement figure on switching to FuelSense 2.0 software. Our calculations show that the cost of the upgrade is paid back in fuel savings within 14.5 weeks.”

Both vehicles in the trial worked double shifts, from 6am to 9pm, Monday to Friday. The trucks collected four different types of waste, spending two consecutive weeks on each type during an eight-week cycle: paper, landfill, food and garden waste, and plastic. Both vehicles collected and carried more waste during the six-month trial than during the comparative period. The smallest fuel consumption improvement shown during a calendar month was 2.38%, the largest 19.50%, with the combined average over six months calculated as 8.85%. 

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