DAF TelliSys


20% more cargo volume in container transport


TelliSys: 20% more cargo volume in container transport


With a vision to further increase intermodal container transport efficiency, the TelliSys is a prototype of a tractor-semi-trailer-combination with an ultra-low fifth-wheel position that leads to 20% more cargo volume.


TelliSys is a partnership between the IMA of the RWTH Aachen University, the European Intermodal Association, DAF, GEFCO, Goodyear, WECON and WESOB and aims to enable the transport of containers with an internal height of three metres. As a result, three so-called ‘one-metre-trays' can be stacked in a container, so that load volumes up to 100 m3 can be achieved.

85 cm fifth-wheel height

Within the TelliSys consortium, DAF has developed a Super Low-Deck tractor. By lowering the chassis behind the engine and by the use of a very compact rear suspension in combination with 22.5" wheels on the driven axle, a fifth-wheel height of just 85 cm is achieved. In addition, the special Low-Deck tractor has a lightweight 4.0-tonne trailing axle with 17.5" wheels to achieve a GCW of 44 tonnes. For the project, Goodyear has developed special new low-profile tyres for the steered and driven axles. These tyres are characterised by a very low-profile with high load capacities.

New generation of containers

To complement the DAF Super Low-Deck tractor’s 85cm fifth-wheel height, WECON has developed a special lightweight trailer of just 3,830 kg. Equally important is the development of a new generation of 40- and 45-feet containers, of which the floor is considerably thinner while maintaining load-bearing capacity and torsional stiffness. On the prototype, WECON has fitted a folding curtain to underline the versatility of the TelliSys Intermodal Technology Concept.

Successful field test

Not only were the dimensions and load capacities taken into account during the development of the concept truck, but full attention was also paid to maneuverability, comfort and operational effectiveness. "TelliSys has shown that it is possible to achieve 20% higher efficiency for container transportation," said intermodal consultant Heiko Sennewald, who is both the partner and initiator to the project.

European Union

The ‘Intelligent Transport System for Innovative Intermodal Freight Transport’ (TelliSys) promotes the EU’s objective of optimising the performance of intermodal logistics chains and provides smooth and cooperative interactions between different modes of transport. The project was funded within the 7th Framework Program (FP7) of the European Union.