WABCO Wins CLEPA Innovation Award 2017 for its Industry-Leading OptiFlow AutoTail Aerodynamic Solution for Trailers; Enhances Fuel Efficiency and Lowers Emissions of Commercial Vehicles

(PresseBox) ( Brussels, Belgium, )
WABCO Holdings Inc. (NYSE: WBC), a leading global supplier of technologies and services that improve the safety, efficiency and connectivity of commercial vehicles, was recently recognized by CLEPA with its prestigious Innovation Award 2017 for its OptiFlow™ AutoTail, the latest addition to WABCO’s industry-leading portfolio of aerodynamic solutions for trailers. The state-of-the-art device helps reduce the fuel consumption and emissions of commercial vehicles. CLEPA is the European Association of Automotive Suppliers and has more than 100 member companies and over 20 national as well as European trade associations.

The CLEPA Innovation Award 2017 celebrates excellence of innovative technologies and solutions developed by leading automotive suppliers in the categories Environment, Safety, Connectivity and Automation, as well as Cooperation. CLEPA’s international jury of industry experts recognized WABCO’s OptiFlow™ AutoTail in the category Environment. Assessing 56 applications from 31 companies across Europe, the panel of judges ranked all technology innovations based on the following criteria: ambition, market relevance, impact, and quality.

“Protecting the environment is of the utmost importance to the global transportation industry,” said Roberto Vavassori, President, CLEPA. “The jury recognized WABCO’s aerodynamic AutoTail since this innovative technology helps to reduce emissions of commercial vehicles while further lowering the total cost of transportation.”

“It’s a tremendous honor to receive the CLEPA Innovation Award for WABCO’s industry-leading OptiFlow™ AutoTail aerodynamic solution for trailers,” said Dr. Gandert Van Raemdonck, Research and Development Leader, Aerodynamics and Trailer Systems, WABCO. “WABCO’s OptiFlow™ portfolio of aerodynamic technologies is on the cutting edge of innovations that drive fuel efficiency and emissions reduction for heavy duty commercial vehicles. Our AutoTail system is the latest product to arise from WABCO's world-class design and engineering capabilities that can help fleets to maximize operational efficiency.”

WABCO’s OptiFlow AutoTail deploys and retracts tail panels based on driving speed as determined by sensors linked to WABCO’s braking systems for trailers. The device automatically deploys at vehicle speeds of 75 km/h ensuring it is consistently used at speeds that maximize aerodynamic fuel savings. The tail panels automatically retract at a vehicle speed of 15 km/h. OptiFlow AutoTail delivers fuel savings in Europe of up to 1.1 liters per 100km at highway speeds, and reduces CO₂ emissions by up to 2.8 tons per trailer per year.

WABCO’s exceptionally compact OptiFlow AutoTail measures only approximately 50cm in length. In addition, it is made from automotive grade thermoplastic, an extremely lightweight, durable and long-lasting material that resists wear from weather, vibration and everyday hazards of the trucking industry. The panels offer a unique, curved shape and smooth surface that reduces air resistance.

In February 2017, WABCO introduced its OptiFlow™ AutoTail to North America. The first aerodynamic tail in the U.S. to feature automatic deployment and retraction, WABCO’s OptiFlow AutoTail delivers fuel savings of up to 4.3% at U.S. highway speeds based on SmartWay test protocol, and reduces CO₂ emissions by up to 4.8 tons per trailer per year. The innovative aerodynamic device is also the first to earn EPA SmartWay verification from the prestigious National Research Council (NRC), the Canadian government’s premier research and technology organization.
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