The juggernauts are coming

Published on 2 July 2009 at 14:30

Giant 60-ton lorries, 25 metres long, soon barrelling down the highways of Europe? Perhaps, warns [Die Presse](, alarmed at heavy duty vehicle (HDV) manufacturers’ massively lobbying the European Commission for permission to start their engines here. “The Commission came out in favour of Gigaliners in its first report,” writes the Viennese daily, which fears that “Stockholm, with its automakers Volvo and Scania, could even up the pressure now that it presides over the Union”. Sweden and Finland are at present the only European countries with EuroCombis, as they are also called, already rolling down the roads. Opinion is divided in the EU: Denmark, The Netherlands and Belgium are by and large in favour; Austria, Germany and some Central European countries against. “The long-term cost will be humongous: many roads won’t bear a weight of 60 tons,” points out Die Presse – adding, en passant, that we ought to be rebuilding roads, bridges and hairpin bends. The lorries currently in use, it points out, are 18m and 40 tons max.

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