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UPS CV-23 prototype (built by Isuzu/Utilimaster)  (Source: UPS)
"What can green... err brown do for you?"

When much of your operating expenses include fuel to power your delivery vehicles, achieving the maximum fuel economy is always a mission that UPS takes very seriously. The company in the past has looked to hybrid technology that paired an electric motor and batteries with a traditional turbodiesel engine.

This time around, however, UPS is going a much simpler route with a prototype CV-23 delivery truck that is 1,000 pounds lighter than its conventional P70 counterpart according to Jalopnik (the P70 weighs roughly 10,000 pounds). The huge weight savings has plenty of benefits when it comes to fuel efficiency.

First off, UPS is able to use a smaller, 150hp four-cylinder turbodiesel engine that is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission to achieve the same performance as conventional steel-bodied trucks (the P70 uses a 200hp engine according to GreenBiz). Secondly, the reduced weight and smaller engine means that fuel efficiency jumps a whopping 40 percent compared to the P70. UPS reckons that it will save about 84 million gallons of fuel annually as a result.

So how exactly did UPS manage a 1,000-pound weight savings? Utilimaster and Isuzu developed composite body panels that already include UPS’ iconic brown color molded into the plastic, therefore toxic paint isn’t required.

Other new features include LEDs for all exterior lightning (with the exception of the headlights), plastic lower body moldings that are cheaper and easier to repair/replace than steel. 

This "green love fest" isn't without its downsides, however. The CV-23 prototype only has 630 cu ft of cargo space compared to a more generous 700 cu ft for the P70. 

UPS is currently testing its new CV-23 prototypes in Lincoln, Nebraska; Albany, NY; Tucson, AZ; Flint, MI; and Roswell Georgia.

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By icanhascpu on 6/1/2011 7:02:15 AM , Rating: 2
Good to see this. Hope more huge consumers of gas do this to help the supply for all.

RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 6/1/2011 7:38:45 AM , Rating: 5
This has nothing to do with caring about saving gas. It has to do with saving money. All they see is green. As in dollar signs.

The fact that it makes them look environmentally friendly is just an added bonus. The same goes for any other company with "green" initiatives.

RE: Good
By retrospooty on 6/1/2011 8:15:39 AM , Rating: 4
both good reasons, so who cares. All in all its a good thing, regardless of the motivation. I wish more companies would do this.

RE: Good
By Thalyn on 6/1/2011 11:15:44 PM , Rating: 2
If going green meant saving money, you can bet your ass that more companies would be doing it. And not just companies - but the average consumer as well. Who in their right mind wouldn't want to save money, after all?

Let's face it... going green is all well and good, but it'll be the bottom line which either stimulates or halts the transition.

RE: Good
By SunTzu on 6/2/2011 7:47:42 AM , Rating: 2
Your operating under the faulty assumption that every CEO knows what's best for his company. Alot of people, and companies, make bad decisions.

RE: Good
By ddownes on 6/2/2011 1:50:10 AM , Rating: 2
It's akin to becoming an MD for the wages and title rather than wanting to save lives. Who cares why they're doing it, as long as they do their job well.

RE: Good
By Wiggy Mcshades on 6/2/2011 11:49:00 AM , Rating: 2
I dare you to try to find someone who doesn't actually want to do a job and at the same time does that job well. The only type of person more difficult to find at that point would be the ones who actually want to do their job.

RE: Good
By LumbergTech on 6/1/2011 9:17:10 AM , Rating: 2
Who cares why they do it? If it is more efficient/saves them money and is better for our planet then why should we bitch and complain? It is a great thing and its the most ideal situation possible when a company can benefit from doing a good thing.

RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 6/1/2011 10:44:28 AM , Rating: 2
Who's bitching. I was pointing out that companies "going green" are doing it when it makes financial sense. They don't give a crap about "saving the planet". They care about their bottom line. As they should.

RE: Good
By bernardl on 6/1/2011 8:08:17 PM , Rating: 2
I was pointing out that companies "going green" are doing it when it makes financial sense. They don't give a crap about "saving the planet". They care about their bottom line. As they should.

What if I, as a customer, decided to use UPS instead of Fedex because I like UPS's green policy?

What if the executives of UPS had the impression that many people are like me.

Would that not be a possible reason why they might want to become more eco friendly?


RE: Good
By Schrag4 on 6/2/2011 1:02:15 PM , Rating: 2
It still comes down to a financial decision. If the projected revenue from customers who switch to UPS for the sake of going green is less than the cost of going green they wouldn't do it.

RE: Good
By kattanna on 6/1/2011 10:56:26 AM , Rating: 2
and is better for our planet

are you sure about that?

the old trucks were made with metal, which can be recycled. all those plastic parts.. not so much. also what about the composite panels? composite materials usually are much harder to recycle, if even possible currently.

so just because something saves on gas upfront, it does not mean in total it is friendlier to the planet.

and FIT is right, this is ALL about saving money. PERIOD. dont believe for a second that if this didnt save them money they would pursue it. Now while there is nothing wrong with that, giving someone/something "green" accolades and to feel "good" about them "doing the right thing" when that is not their intention makes you look foolish and gullible.

RE: Good
By LumbergTech on 6/1/11, Rating: -1
RE: Good
By Kurz on 6/1/2011 1:50:46 PM , Rating: 2
Gullible and foolish? Sorry for setting someone straight about the reasons why companies like UPS are changing their business model.

Almost every advancement in technology has always adobted by the market because it makes financial sense. The general population doesnt care nearly as much for the environment as you do. Nor should they.

RE: Good
By ender21 on 6/1/11, Rating: 0
RE: Good
By Spuke on 6/1/2011 3:22:24 PM , Rating: 4
He didn't say shouldn't, he said doesn't. What's hard to understand is how buying more stuff shows you care about the environment. If you care, buy less stuff, take care of what you have. Buy used cars, used clothes, used homes. If you want to go solar or wind, buy used one's off of Craigslist or ebay. Less impact.

IMO, I don't think it's about caring for the environment, I think it's about LOOKING like you care. Else, there wouldn't be so many arguments about what people drive. What you drive is only part of the story and a small part at that. I still see a 1000 kWh per MONTH average (LOL!) energy usage for the typical American family so as far as I'm concerned, all of this so-called "care" is just a lot of hot air.

RE: Good
By YashBudini on 6/1/2011 6:45:16 PM , Rating: 2
He didn't say shouldn't, he said doesn't.

Actually he said both

The general population doesnt care nearly as much for the environment as you do. Nor should they.

I think it's about LOOKING like you care.

In reality they are saying they don't know what to do and require guidance. Or it implies they never have the time or desire to actually think about it.

Also if people shouldn't care at all, as initially implied, that means someone else will make the decision for you. Who will that be? Government? The corporations trying to churn a profit?

all of this so-called "care" is just a lot of hot air.

Well don't just sit there man, pipe it into a heat exchanger or blow it against some thermocouples.

RE: Good
By Kurz on 6/1/2011 9:47:57 PM , Rating: 2
Nope I didn't say shouldn't, I merely was explaining why should everyone care as much for the environment as he does.

I care about the environment though I place Human needs/desires over that of the planet. If there is a win/win situation I don't see the problem with it.

RE: Good
By YashBudini on 6/2/2011 12:45:50 AM , Rating: 2
I didn't say shouldn't

The general population doesnt care nearly as much for the environment as you do. Nor should they .

Nor should they = shouldn't.

RE: Good
By Reclaimer77 on 6/1/2011 2:32:05 PM , Rating: 2
Not to mention "going green" get's you tons of government kickbacks, errr I mean "incentives" and "subsidies".

RE: Good
By ender21 on 6/1/2011 2:38:57 PM , Rating: 1
So does buying an H2. Or have those "subsidies" upwards of $15K expired?

RE: Good
By Spuke on 6/1/2011 3:42:56 PM , Rating: 2
So does buying an H2. Or have those "subsidies" upwards of $15K expired?
There a was government subsidy for H2's?

RE: Good
By cdwilliams1 on 6/1/2011 3:48:04 PM , Rating: 2
There was a government subsidy for work/commercial vehicles. It was intended to help farmers and construction crews purchase new vehicles and get the economy going again after the first bush recession in 2002. The classification between consumer and commercial vehicles was determined only by weight alone. It was a poorly worded bill. The hummer, suburban, and excursion were all so heavy they counted as commercial under this tax code and therefore got an $8k-$15k tax credit.

RE: Good
By Spuke on 6/1/2011 3:52:15 PM , Rating: 2
Ah, I remember that. People were buying SUV's and trucks like crazy back then too. Why not? It was $15k cheaper. I hated SUV's back then and even considered getting a Suburban.

RE: Good
By Reclaimer77 on 6/1/2011 3:48:40 PM , Rating: 2
No there wasn't. Ender is stupidly obsessed with H2's for some reason. That's like the fifth time today I've seen him try to tie the H2 into some ridiculous argument.


RE: Good
By SunTzu on 6/2/2011 7:49:40 AM , Rating: 2
Think twice before posting please, everything he said was correct.

RE: Good
By Reclaimer77 on 6/2/2011 11:51:59 AM , Rating: 2
That wasn't a subsidy to buy an "H2". As someone pointed out there was a subsidy for entire classes of vehicles, and the H2 happened to fall into that. So no, he's not correct. He's deliberately narrowing down the facts to make a one sided emotional argument.

And I'm against subsidies of all kinds. But his argument is a straw man. Throwing up an SUV subsidy when I speak out against an EV subsidy is a straw man and generally a poor debate tactic. Being against one doesn't inversely mean you are for the other. Especially when presented in such a hostile accusatory tone.

RE: Good
By icanhascpu on 6/1/2011 2:44:25 PM , Rating: 1
I didn't say anything about them caring about saving for gas sake. LOL? I said I hope more huge consumers of gas do this. DONT YOU?

RE: Good
By BZDTemp on 6/1/2011 5:55:39 PM , Rating: 2
Not exactly. Look at a company like Maersk.

They are saving fuel by smart ship design and smart speed decisions but they are also running cleaner fuel when close to population centers which cost them money (so much they would be uncompetitive if they did it all the time). You may of course argue that what the clean fuel cost them is a marketing investment which will benefit them in other ways, but considering their customers are companies and not consumers then your argument does not hold.

Simply saying no company cares is wrong (after all companies are run by humans).

RE: Good
By Wiggy Mcshades on 6/2/2011 12:00:50 PM , Rating: 2
Prove to me humans can care.

RE: Good
By Skywalker123 on 6/2/2011 9:18:27 PM , Rating: 2
ooh, someones Mommy didn't wuv him!

RE: Good
By nxjwfgwe on 6/3/2011 7:51:15 AM , Rating: 1

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RE: Good
By Kurz on 6/1/2011 7:55:43 AM , Rating: 3
Being more efficient is only possible if economics make sense.
Hence most people don't put solar panels or Wind turbines on their home, Economics dont make sense.

They only thing you should be hoping for is more advancements in tech and cheaper prices.

RE: Good
By ender21 on 6/1/2011 2:41:02 PM , Rating: 2
Now that's a comment I can get behind. Economies of scale ultimately drive everything. Automobiles were more efficient when they first came to market, but damned if only a few people could own them due to expense. Same with computers.

Thus some adopters, those passionate or wealthy enough, perhaps, have to adopt early enough for such economies of scale to come to fruition. Otherwise it's just a catch-22. I won't buy if it isn't cheap. It isn't cheap because no one's buying.

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