Consultant report

Market barriers to increased efficiency in the European on-road freight sector

There are several technical and operational measures available to improve the fuel efficiency of truck fleets, but many of these measures are currently not universally implemented. Even cost-effective measures (i.e., measures which can be implemented with net fuel savings that outweigh the initial technology costs and potentially at a net profit) are often not adopted.

This report, commissioned by the ICCT from CE Delft, aims to better understand the reasons for the limited adoption of cost-effective fuel-saving technologies and to inform the policy-making process in the European Union and abroad, and specifically to provide input to the European Commission’s strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from HDVs. The primary goal of the study is to identify the barriers to the implementation of technologies that improve fuel efficiency in the European road freight transport sector.

For this report, the existence and importance of barriers were analyzed through surveys and interviews of transport companies, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), shippers, and logistics service providers. Some main findings of this study are that there is a lack of demand for retrofit fuel saving technologies, as well as a lack of offer of OEM fuel saving technologies in OEM packages. Furthermore, according to the study results, there is a lack of information on the precise benefits of fuel saving technologies. Also, it was found that the so-called split incentive in HDV operations does not appear to be as important as originally anticipated.


A workshop was conducted 15 October 2012 to solicit comments and feedback on this report as it neared completion from those with firsthand knowledge on market barriers for technologies in the freight sector. A summary of notes from the workshop is included as an Annex at the end of the report. A workshop agenda and presentation may be downloaded via the links below.