Since April 2021, Dachser has opted exclusively for so-called ‘mega trailers’ when purchasing new semi-trailers in Germany. Because of their more generous cargo space dimensions - with otherwise the same length and width - the mega trailers achieve better fuel economy than standard semi-trailers, especially over long distances. Full conversion of the German fleet is scheduled to be completed by 2027, with some 680 new mega trailers in total. In the next few years, Dachser will also start replacing its fleets in the 24 other European countries where it is represented through its European Logistics business line.
So-called Mega trailers have the same length and width as a standard semi-trailer, and their overall height remains below 4 meters, the maximum vehicle height permissible in Germany. They boast an additional 20 centimeters in interior height, as the loading area is just under 100 centimeters above the road surface. This results in a total of 8 cubic meters more cargo space. With double‑deck loading, a mega trailer offers space for 67 euro pallets. It thus comes close to the capacity of a semi-trailer truck with two swap bodies—however, as this offers five more pallet spaces than the mega trailer, it will remain Dachser’s preferred option for now.
“The limiting factor in the groupage business is usually not the maximum permissible total weight of 40 metric tons, but the available loading volume,” explains Christian Schütz, Department Head Technics/Technical Purchase at Dachser. “More cargo space means better capacity utilization; in the case of the mega trailer, that can be as much as 18 percent. This is efficient and also good for our carbon footprint, as it saves us trips.”
“Dachser pioneered the introduction of the swap body 50 years ago, and it remains the benchmark in terms of cargo space efficiency. Today, we want to be the first major groupage provider in Europe to use mega trailers instead of standard semi-trailers,” says Alexander Tonn, COO Road Logistics at Dachser. “Mega trailers are more expensive to purchase, but they make up for it over their service life through their greater cost-effectiveness. In addition, this progress in process efficiency contributes to our long-term climate protection strategy.”
In pursuing this strategy, Dachser focuses on efficient logistics and technological innovation. The company believes this is the best way to achieve the 2-degree target set by the Paris Agreement as well as the climate protection targets of the European Union and many other countries over the medium and long term. To this end, Dachser works together with customers and partners who are also keen to actively shape how logistics moves to adopt low- and zero‑emission technologies. Dachser concentrates its climate protection initiatives on four key fields of action: process efficiency, energy efficiency, research and development, and corporate citizenship. The latter refers to a commitment to society and social issues that goes beyond Dachser’s own direct business interests.