Isuzu Truck aims for cleaner energy
As part of their 10th anniversary as the market leader, Isuzu Truck invited us to spend a day with them and shared insights on where they are and what their plans are as a brand in the motoring space. Here's what we discovered:
Things could be better
You've likely heard of emissions regulations, something that's been becoming more and more stringent over the years. These regulations aim to reduce pollution in all vehicles. Isuzu Truck has openly shared its position, being in a state of having fallen behind and not being up-to-date with the latest emissions standards. The brand has been compliant with EURO-2 of the European emissions standards, where the current standard is EURO-5. They're not where they should be by a long shot, but are taking steps to improve on this. Some new models from the firm are already compliant with EURO-5 standards, so things are looking promising. Among other things, Craig Uren, Senior Vice president, of Revenue Generation at Isuzu shared the brand's strategy for reaching its goal of a sustainable energy source.
Short term strategy
Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither was anything worthwhile. Isuzu Truck has implemented measures to reach its goal. From a short-term perspective, the organisation will be making use of CNG in selected models. Compressed natural gas isn't a new energy source in vehicles, it has been used widely in the automotive space in different regions. What makes it more appealing than petrol or diesel is that it does not produce any harmful gases when burnt. The gas is also cheaper to obtain than its liquid fuel counterparts while offering a better range in vehicles where it has been fitted. Isuzu Truck currently has 14 CNG models in the country, and the initial phase of this roll-out will include a small group of selected customers
As a medium-term plan, they'll be looking to battery electric power. The reason that this is a medium-term strategy when other brands are already rolling out extensive vehicle ranges powered by electricity is, according to Uren, due to the country's unreliable electricity supply. "The Eskom crisis will be with us for a long time to come," he said
Long term strategy
Lastly, the brand's long-term plan isn't the conventional electric energy solution that we've seen from many vehicle OEMs, Isuzu Truck has opted to go the hydrogen-electric route as a solution to curbing pollution. Now, not a lot is spoken about this energy source and you may be wondering how it works. Well, the vehicle is an electric vehicle but instead of being fuelled by electricity, it utilises compressed hydrogen gas for its fuel. The gas doesn't burn, although through a chemical reaction, it transforms into electrical energy, which, in turn, runs the vehicle.
The migration to alternative energy sources is widespread, and while it may not be what we want to hear, especially when it concerns the electrification of some of our favourite sports cars, in a transport industry such as trucks, it would do wonders.