Narrow Aisle confirm more lift truck users choosing lithium-ion
Narrow Aisle Ltd – manufacturer of the Flexi range of articulated VNA forklifts – reports that nearly a quarter of all enquiries about new trucks during the second quarter of 2020, named lithium-ion as their preferred forklift power choice.
The company believes this is because customers are looking to maximise truck up-time, drive down running costs, reduce operational noise levels and eliminate exhaust emissions within their buildings.
“We are witnessing a clear uptick in interest and demand for lithium-ion powered Flexi articulated trucks – especially amongst retailers and third party logistics specialists. This is mostly being driven by the significant shift to ‘online commerce’,” says John Maguire, Narrow Aisle Ltd’s managing director.
He continues: “Truck users appear to be moving away from LPG and diesel-driven forklifts in significant numbers. Time and again, the companies that we work with explain that they are evaluating the environmental impact of their logistics operations. As a result, they are looking to replace diesel and LPG trucks with cleaner, more environmentally-friendly and fuel-efficient alternatives.
“A lithium-ion battery can be fully charged in under an hour and provides consistent voltage – which means they don’t slow down the machine as they discharge. And, because they do not emit any exhaust gases, they are a better option for the working environment.”
“Retailers and 3PL operators are among the growing number of lift truck users that are taking a more intelligent, fact-based approach to capital expenditure. This means that they calculate the cost of running a truck over an entire lifetime of its use – rather than just basing purchasing strategy on the lowest up-front cost. They find lithium-ion an attractive proposition.”
Maguire believes that the private motorist’s shift from diesel-engine cars coupled with the increasing use of electric technology across the automotive sector is helping to heighten an awareness of and interest in lithium-ion-powered materials handling equipment.
“No doubt the high profile evolution of electric-powered vehicles, which is being led by companies such as Tesla in the automotive industry, is driving demand for the latest lift truck technology that Narrow Aisle offers,” he says.
Narrow Aisle Ltd launched its Flexi LiTHiON range of lithium-ion powered articulated warehouse trucks two years ago and the trucks have become a popular choice among a wide range of customer groups.
The Flexi LiTHiON requires zero maintenance and delivers extended multi-shift availability – making the trucks the ideal ‘green’ energy solution for modern order fulfilment operations, retail warehouses, temperature controlled stores, chemical stores and automotive manufacturing facilities.
Maguire adds: “Over the last two years there has been a major change in attitudes to alternative forklift power sources. According to recent research, nearly 80 per cent of lift truck operators stated that they will consider lithium-ion when the time comes for their next forklift acquisition. Lithium-ion battery technology has come of age at precisely the right time to meet the market’s environmental, productivity and safety demands.”