Trends in Transport for 2023

December 8th, 2022

We at Don-Trucking collected the most important Road Transport Trends 2023 we found for you and packed them in one article.

Trend 1: A more efficient supply chain

Whether we are talking about MaaS or new ways to approach TMS systems such as Transportial as we use at Don-trucking, a more efficient supply chain is needed due to external factors such as the conflict in Ukraine, less accessible routes, lack of labor and more limited transportation capacity.

Also other technologies such as self driving cars, robots, RFID and drones will add their part to the equation. This is no longer a promise an expectation by the market as new solutions are needed urgently. One example of this is Smartchain, a project funded by the EU and involving a total of 43 institutions from eleven European countries, aimed at improving the fruit and vegetable supply chain on the continent.

The learnings made by applying all these technologies also delivers addition insights in your logistical chain and that of your customers which in the end translates in more opportunities to increase your bottom-line.

Trend 2: Solve the increasing shortage of truck drivers

Another major issue that needs to be addressed immediately by the road transport sector is the severe labor shortage. It is estimated that the shortage of drivers in Europe is above 400,000, a significant figure that could continue to increase given the average age of those in active service, above 50, and the dropout rate of self-employed drivers. In addition, working conditions that require long hours of solitude and long working hours keep many away from work. For this reason, the objective now is to work towards easier access to the profession and more flexible conditions, making it a more attractive occupation.

By using new technologies such as mentioned in trend 1 you can make your job easier and use both drivers but also planners more efficiently.

At Don-trucking we use our own USP, carbon neutral in 2025, as a way to attract drivers and give them the possibility to contribute to a better planet for their family. Of course in combination with all the other usual good conditions.

Trend 3: B2B expects a B2C approach, a more efficient and cheaper last mile delivery is needed.

In recent times, last-mile shipping is emerging as one of the most established trends worldwide. Consumers demand immediacy and convenience. The traditional process of shipping from manufacturers to warehouses, and from distribution warehouses to stores, is becoming less common. This also is expected by the B2B sector more and more. However, for enterprises and logistics companies, this represents yet another expense. To alleviate this, the need arises for more efficient methods using technology such as AI, autonomous vehicles, freight exchanges. 

Trend 4: Electric vehicles

The push towards electric also includes commercial transportation vehicles, like vans and semi-trucks. As large freight trucks are responsible for 26% of all highway-based fuel consumption, there’s growing support for commercial electric vehicles. Both Tesla and Nikola are projecting start dates to begin manufacturing their electric semi-trucks for a while now. Although with delay, it will come sooner or later. These manufacturers contribute to the estimate that the global electric truck industry will experience a CAGR of 26.4% from 2021-2030. Among other modes of transport, all-electric airplanes and electric ships are further on the horizon.

Trend 5: Sustainability, the all-encompassing trend

And, of course, we have sustainability. In the search for “greener” transportation, measures are already being taken, such as the aforementioned electric trucks that reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Or offshoring of large companies’ supply chains, which means fewer kilometers traveled and, therefore, a reduction in the environmental cost of manufacturing these products.

Another aspect of great importance is innovation to reduce supply chain emissions. As investors and consumers pressure large manufacturers to reduce emissions, supply chain professionals are constantly looking for new ways to improve efficiency. For example, technology that tracks on-road behavior, which not only reduces transportation emissions but at the same time saves money on fuel and maintenance costs.

Fuels itself will be one of the most decisive factors in driving sustainability in the transport world.

Key Road Transportation Fuel Market Trend are:

  • Electricity will start to play a more important role for short distance back-and forth drives with charging capabilities on location.
  • The adoption of bio-based and clean fuels is one of the key road transportation fuel market trends contributing to the market growth.
  • The combustion of transportation fuels derived from fossil fuels is contributing significantly to global CO2 emissions, thereby increasing greenhouse gas effects. However, biofuels are especially used to reduce vehicle emissions.
  • Biofuels are usually mixed with fossil fuels and used as additives. The most commonly used biofuel in vehicles is ethanol and biomass-based diesel.
  • An increased consumption of biofuels in vehicles will boost the global road transportation fuel market during the forecast period.
  • Hydrogen is a future alternative for long distance transport, however solid network is still under development. Germany is having the best network so far. Additionally, Hydrogen takes a lot of energy to make and the solar, wind or waterpower is not yet enough to make this happen alternatively. 

This way it seems the market is developing into different fuels for different distances. This has a negative effect on prices. As most efficient transport is when you can combine different trips within your overall planning. The next few years LNG and bioLNG, and later on biogas, delivers a strong reduction on CO2 and NOx. And additionally keeps the planning as flexible as possible.

It is imperative that both supply and demand side of the market stay in close contact. This way they can develop the best possible mobility plan for the future. 

At Don-trucking we already aim to be carbon neutral in 2025 for a few years now. Although we use the newest EURO6 diesel trucks, we decided to switch the fleet towards (bio-)LNG trucks. This is the only midterm solution to reduce our carbon footprint. With enough supply of bio gas in the future.

Last but not least we cooperate with Ecobal to compensate the emissions we can not avoid.


However, the final leap will have to wait a little longer. At least according to the analysis carried out by Cambridge Econometrics and presented by the European Transport & Environment Federation (Transport & Environment). This indicates that pure battery-electric trucks prepared to use electric roads will not be competitive compared to internal combustion vehicles until 2025. Fuel cell vehicles competitiveness will not be achieved until 2030.

This all needs to fit in with the overall goal of Fitfor55 (now 57) in 2030. And the Mobility Packages the EU developed out of this. These are deadlines that needs to be achieved. To reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the road freight fleet and climate neutrality by 2050 is to be achieved. This will require technologies (batteries, electric road systems, and fuel cells) and fuels (green hydrogen) with zero carbon emissions. Plus reduce cost and, above all, regulations. To be established at the European level and in each country. And make rapid and safe progress on the path to the decarbonization of road freight transport.