n 2009, the U.S. Department of Transportation launched a “SuperTruck Challenge” aimed at finding ways to improve the fuel efficiency of large trucks by at least 50%.
Daimler has now unveiled its response, the “Freightliner SuperTruck” which is claimed to improve fuel efficiency by 115% over the baseline standard. Most of that improvement comes from better aerodynamics including adjustable ride height, covering gaps between the cab and trailer and a grill which closes at high vehicle speed. The SuperTruck captures and uses waste heat from the exhaust and brakes and has roof-mounted solar panels to power the trailer’s air conditioning. It even has a GPS system which change gears to maximise efficiency on hills.