The winners of the inaugural Future Truck Design Awards were announced last week (26 April) at the Commercial Vehicle Show in Birmingham.
The competition, organised by TfL as part of the Safer Trucks programme, encouraged sixth form students, undergraduates and postgraduates to play an active role in making roads safer by designing the next generation of trucks.
It was set up to challenge budding designers to transform the traditional truck into a vehicle that is even safer and smarter for deliveries in busy urban areas, and to help young people understand the complexities involved in meeting the challenges of safety and sustainability.
The winning entrants impressed the judging panel of experts from industry and truck manufacturers, who saw the potential for elements of the designs to be on the road in just a few years.
The winning designs focused on alleviating a variety of challenges posed by traditional trucks, in particular visibility of other road users from the cab. Entrants developed concepts such as rotating seats, all-round glass cabins and changing the position of the cab.
The student designers also looked at ways of informing drivers of their situation, including computerised cyclist tracking that delivers tactile feedback through the steering wheel, and a communication system that uses the driver’s satnav to provide advance warning of manoeuvres to following motorists.
The winners were:
Whole Vehicle Design – One Engineering, Suffolk One
Whole Vehicle Design – Ruari Kirwan-Taylor
System of Operation – James Ayre
Whole Vehicle Design – Po Yuan Huang and Jing Tian Li
Safety Feature Innovation – Sam Philpott and Kalle Keituri
The winning designs will be exhibited at the Transport Museum in Covent Garden this summer.
Ian Wainwright, head of TfL’s freight and fleet team, said: “Our first Future Truck Design Awards has been an incredible success. We‘ve been overwhelmed by the quality, originality and innovation of the entries. I would like to thank all the entrants for their hard work, commitment and contribution to the safety debate.
“As London grows and becomes busier we remain committed to improving road safety for all. By working with the industry they now recognise the safety of other roads users, as well as drivers and passengers, as a key part of the design process.
“The Future Truck Design Awards has generated ideas that challenge the traditional look of the HGV, help inform future vehicle design and accelerate the process of building trucks specifically for safe, urban use.”