Iveco has presented its developments in its action plan to support the use of natural gas in the transport sector in Japan.

Iveco's plan of action comes on the back of the Memorandum of Cooperation the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan signed with the European Commission last year for the development of advanced technologies for the use of LNG powertrains in road and maritime transport.

The brand announced the public launch of the Stralis NP 400, the first heavy-duty natural gas vehicle ready for sale on the Japanese market. It is the first natural gas specifically designed for long distance transport, and can run on Liquefied (LNG), Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), or a combination of the two.

Also commercially available is the new Daily Blue Power range in its Daily Hi-Matic Natural Power and Daily Minibus Natural Power versions, the first CNG vehicles with an 8-speed automatic gearbox.

In addition, Iveco announced the signing of an agreement with Fuji Transport for the sale of the first LNG truck in Japan, an Iveco Stralis NP 400 running on LNG only. Fuji Transport will use the vehicle on the Tokyo-Osaka route as well as in its operations for customers which include the Japan Postal Service and will monitor and analyse the performance of the Stralis NP 400 with its telematics and GPS systems.

The two new ranges will make their public debut at the Japan Truck Show in Yokohama.

"Less than a year ago, the Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the European Commission signed a Memorandum of Cooperation on the development of liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel in road and maritime freight applications," said Iveco brand president, Pierre Lahutte. 

"Here we are today launching our natural gas ranges and selling the first LNG truck that will operate on one of the busiest freight routes in the world, Tokyo-Osaka, with around 100,000 trucks driving it every day.

"The autonomy and environmental benefits of the Stralis NP 400, together with the LNG distribution plan developed by Shell along Japan's main freight routes, make it the perfect vehicle for the transition to clean and sustainable long-distance transport."

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