Marks & Spencer has launched what it claims is the first fleet of articulated trailers with a teardrop shape that reduces CO2 emissions by 20% compared with a standard cab-trailer fleet operation.

Following successful testing of a prototype, pictured above, M&S has ordered another 140 trailers, which have been developed and manufactured by commercial vehicle specialist Don-Bur.

The trailer mimics the aerodynamic lines of a teardrop. The roof has a specially designed full-length curve, and corners are rounded off to improve air flow. The gap between the truck and trailer is minimised to reduce turbulence, while skirts under the trailer further minimise the drag factor. The shape delivers a 10% fuel saving.

The lightweight trailer can also carry up to 16% more load than a standard trailer, saving journeys.

Marks & Spencer said the 141 Teardrop trailers, introduced as part of its Plan A five-year eco-drive, would reduce its carbon footprint by 840 tonnes every year.