Xtra Lease trailer purchase focuses on efficiency

Trailer leasing and rental firm Xtra Lease has placed an order for thousands of trailers with enhancements designed to improve trailer fuel efficiency while complying with California’s greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations

Trailer leasing and rental firm Xtra Lease has placed an order for thousands of trailers with enhancements designed to improve trailer fuel efficiency while complying with California’s greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations.

The 6,000 53-ft. dry van and refrigerated trailers are equipped with aerodynamic side skirts and low rolling resistance tires.

The California Air Resource Board (CARB) now requires 2011-model-year and newer 53-ft. trailers operating in the Golden State to comply with the state’s Heavy-Duty Vehicle Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction Regulation.

Heavy-duty tractors and 53-ft. trailers are mandated by these rules to meet certain efficiency criteria developed by the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Partnership program. In particular, the program directs the use of aerodynamic trailer side skirts and low rolling resistance tires, Xtra Lease said.

Xtra Lease is slated to start taking delivery of the trailers in February.

“Access to new, quality equipment is significant for fleets unable to invest or acquire the capital needed to obtain new trailers, particularly coming out of the economic cycle we’ve been in and continue to endure,” said Bill Franz, Xtra Lease’s CEO & president.

“As capacity tightens, we’re focused on having a fleet size, mix and model-year make-up that evolves, stays fresh and provides fleets with good, versatile, cost-saving options,” he added.

The company said aerodynamic side skirts could save fleets an estimated 5% in fuel, depending on the number of miles and speed traveled. Low rolling resistance tires can save an additional 1.5% in fuel, again based on the type of trucking operation.

Included in the order will be approximately forty 57-ft. trailers equipped with side skirts and low rolling resistance tires. The company is also adding several 48-ft. vans – including several equipped with liftgates – as well as 48-ft. reefer trailers to the fleet, but those models won’t have side skirts, Xtra Lease pointed out.

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