Expected fuel savings of 7% have prompted Waitrose to order a batch of Gray & Adams trailers, which have been developed with Cambridge University.
It is the third consecutive year the supermarket has placed an order for boat-tail trailers.
Built at Gray & Adams’ Fraserburgh HQ, the trailers were built after testing the product in a wind tunnel and making a series of modifications based on these findings.
These included a smooth underside to allow for better air flow, a lower vehicle height and the tapered boat tail at the trailer’s rear.
Simon Gray, vehicle engineering manager for the John Lewis Partnership, said: “It’s all very well having a nice set of drawings, but you then have to make it work in the real world. Gray & Adams did a good job.”
Waitrose ordered batches of the trailers in 2014 and 2015, which delivered on the predicted fuel savings.
“The 7% improvement translates into an annual per vehicle saving of approximately 2,800 litres of fuel and a reduction in the amount of carbon released into the atmosphere each year of more than 7,000 tonnes,” Gray said.
Based on this, Gray expects to recoup the increased cost of the trailers within the first two years of their 10-year lifetime.
Gray & Adams declined to say how many trailers were being supplied as part of the latest batch.