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  5. Ambev Brewery will have more than 1/3 of its third-party fleet composed by electric trucks by 2023

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Ambev Brewery will have more than 1/3 of its third-party fleet composed by electric trucks by 2023

  • Partnership with Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus involves 1,600 clean energy-powered vehicles; this is the biggest announcement of this kind ever made in the world

Ambev, owner of brands such as Skol, Brahma, Antarctica and Guaraná, announced that by 2023, it will use 1,600 electric trucks made by Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus to transport beverages. With the partnership, about 35% of the fleet serving the brewery will consist of clean energy-powered vehicles, no longer emitting over 30.4K tons of carbon in its logistic chain per year. The deal is the VWCO’s largest for the cargo segment this year.

The first truck to be part of this fleet will be the VW e-Delivery, which will hit the streets later this year, opening the first test phase to determine the most appropriate technology for Ambev’s operations. The model will be 100% recharged with electric power from clean sources, like wind and solar.

The partnership is a landmark in the history of both companies: it is the biggest announcement of this kind ever made in the world. The teamwork represents an important step towards a less fossil fuel-dependent future, and aims at reducing even more greenhouse gases emissions by the fleet that attends Ambev Brewery. Between 2014 and 2017, the company has already reduced its index by 33.9%.

“Our dream is to bring people together for a better world. For that reason, we are always searching for partners who are engaged with the same causes to offer new technologies and processes that have a positive impact in the environment, like Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus. We are sure that this project will greatly contribute to the construction of the sustainable legacy we want to leave for future generations”, says Guilherme Gaia, Director of Logistics and Supply of Ambev.

This is the first 100% electric light truck in Latin America with zero CO2 emission. The solution aligns with the VW Truck & Bus policy of development and promotion of clean technologies, as Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus is part of this group.

“Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus’ global development center, headquartered in Brazil, investigated and applied the best solutions available in the world and locally to satisfy our customers' needs in low emission vehicles for emerging countries. Thanks to our 20-year long partnership with Ambev, we have been the first to develop commercial vehicles for beverage distribution. And now, once more, we sprint off together to enter the electric era", stresses Roberto Cortes, CEO of VW Caminhões e Ônibus, manufacturer of Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus and MAN brands.

Developed in Brazil, the vehicles bring state-of-art solutions for green logistics, like smart systems to adjust the battery demand according to the operation and recover power from braking. The trucks may reach up to 200 kilometers of autonomy depending on the vehicle's application and settings. The noise level is extremely low when compared to traditional models, enhancing the comfort of the driver and his/her helpers during operation.

Social-environmental sustainability is a central pillar of Ambev’s businesses. Over the last five years, the company invested over R$ 1 billion in projects turned to this purpose on its operations. The amount contributed to overcome six of the seven goals announced in 2013 to be reached in 2017. Now, the brewery has announced another major step in in this work, with new commitments, which are expected to be met by 2025. The goals, defined globally by AB InBev, are divided into four cores, one of which specifically refers to reducing carbon emissions in its operations and buying power from renewable sources:

Climate Actions: 100% of the power bought by Ambev must come from renewable sources. Also, the company will reduce by 25% the carbon emissions along its value chain.

Recyclable Packaging: 100% of Ambev’s products must be supplied in packaging that is returnable or mainly made of recycled content.

Water Management: expressively improve the availability and quality of the water for 100% of the communities in highly water-stressed areas with which the brewery has a relationship.

Smart Agriculture: 100% of the brewery’s agricultural partners must be trained, connected and financially structured to develop a more and more sustainable cultivation.

About Ambev Brewery

Bringing people together to make a better world. This is what Ambev, a Brazilian company headquartered in São Paulo and represented in 18 countries, dreams of. In Brazil, we are over 32 thousand people who share the same passion for making beer and work together to guarantee celebration and fun moments.

Ambev is an innovative brewery and we have customers at the very center of our decisions and initiatives. Our portfolio includes beers, soft drinks, teas, isotonic drinks, energy drinks and juices with famous brands like Skol, Brahma, Antarctica, Stella Artois, Wäls, Colorado, Guaraná Antarctica, Fusion, do bem and AMA, the mineral water that reverts 100% of its profits for projects that bring access to drinking water to families of the Brazilian semi-arid region.

In the last five years alone, we invested R$ 17.5 billion in the country and left a legacy that goes beyond these investments with our broad sustainability platform. This commitment includes clear goals, which are disclosed to the public, and translate into four pillars: smart consumption, water, zero residue and development. This work is made with a partner network, because we believe that building a new world becomes richer when we do it together.

About VW Caminhões e Ônibus

Manufacturer of the commercial vehicles Volkswagen and MAN, VW Caminhões e Ônibus is one of the biggest truck and bus makers in Latin America. The innovative VW Caminhões e Ônibus will produce the VW e-Delivery along with its partners in the Modular Consortium, at the plant in Resende, Brazil.

Since 1981, when it started it operations, the automaker’s focus has always been reaching the top of the market respecting and satisfying its customers' needs. And that is exactly what it offers its clients: custom-made products and an excellent post-sales service.

Its production has already surpassed the milestone of 800 thousand vehicles, with over 100 thousand units exported to more than 30

countries. The company is also a reference in technological innovations. Since 2003, the automaker has been carrying out studies with renewable and alternative fuels, even before they became legal requirements.

VW Caminhões e Ônibus is a pioneer in using biodiesel and developing a truck with diesel-hydraulic hybrid system in Brazil. The company always seeks solutions to reduce environmental impact and help preserving the environment.

For over 35 years, the automaker has been living up to its commitment of developing vehicles that exceed customers’ demands – wherever they drive, be it Brazilian, Latin American or African roads.

Based on this data, the system selects gearing and speed strategies for the lowest possible fuel consumption. When compared to a conventional cruise control, we saw that Active Prediction could save between 5–7 percent fuel, with just around 0.9 percent lower average speed.

Fredrik Roos Powertrain control strategist Scania
The system uses topographical map data and GPS technology to determine the characteristics of the road three kilometres ahead.

“Through simulations of different speed profiles we could see that patterns where the speed was increased just before the eco-roll phase was beneficial for the fuel consumption. That’s what we wanted the system to do, automatically,” Roos says.

The result of the team’s efforts, Pulse & Glide, was launched in 2017, adding new functionality to Scania Cruise Control with Active Prediction (CCAP). In the latest version of CCAP, eco-roll can be used even on gradients that under normal circumstances are not steep enough to maintain speed.
Longer time for eco-roll

“By being able to increase speed – Pulse – and then freewheel – Glide – the collective time that the vehicle uses eco-roll can be considerably increased,” says Roos. “On suitable stretches of road, the new function alone can contribute to additional fuel savings of up to 0.5 percent.”

According to Fredrik Roos, the complete active prediction system’s potential is best realized when driving truck and trailer combinations between 20 and 40 tons in hilly ­terrain and relatively light traffic. But Scania’s new system with Pulse & Glide has proved its worth also on flat road stretches, with a total fuel saving of 1.5 percent compared to a standard cruise control.

Now, Roos’ team has started looking at future challenges.

“We are continuously developing the algorithms to also being able to avoid unnecessary braking in situations where traffic is dense and you have short distances between the vehicles. This scenario will become more common as we move towards more convoy driving, or platooning. We are also looking into how we can optimize the system for hybrid powertrains.”