Helios horsebox aerodynamic design
The cost of transport increases each year and almost all transport related items on the market have been designed with fuel economy and aerodynamics in mind.
This includes everything from cycle helmets to the shape and design of cars. In complete contrast to this, the majority of horseboxes have little or no allowances made for vehicle aerodynamics and many still use the same generic fibreglass pods and look externally identical.
Innovation has always been a driving force at KPH and we tested our first curved roof many years ago years ago. Straight away we could see that there were clear advantages in both fuel savings and wind noise reductions, so over time we have refined our curved roof system and from the very first Helios horsebox design meeting, made it an integral part of the overall horsebox design.
We have always strived to continually improve our horseboxes and for the new Helios a desirable aerodynamic shape was paramount. Unfortunately it was not possible with the existing fibreglass pods. So starting with the basics, we designed the Helios fibreglass pod to be very sleek and tapered it in at the front to fit the DAF LF cab perfectly. The design flows smoothly into our curved roof system reducing both wind noise and CO2 emissions by increasing the aerodynamics of the whole range. Other key benefits from this innovative design include reduced fuel consumption, an increased internal volume and an aesthetically pleasing, striking design. Amazingly the internal height has increased to a massive 2515mm (8’3”) yet reduced our overall vehicle height considerably. Fuel economy is also greatly increased and it is easy to see why, as the Helios shape is very slippery indeed. In fact so slippery that at motorway speeds our Helios horseboxes return up to 24 mpg. This is no mean feat when the majority of horseboxes return around the mid teens.
To achieve this we had to redesign how a horsebox is manufactured from the ground up, swapping much of the aluminium for stainless steel. This not only increased longevity, it actually lowered the load height by a considerable 127mm (5”). Lowering this load height makes the Helios horsebox very stable with a much improved ride. It also lowered the ramp angle and ramp height making loading easier.
For the curved roof we moved to a solid composite panel made of the same material as the Helios body, so it is super tough and resilient to all weather conditions. We finish the roof in white gloss, as it is the only colour that reflects the heat from the sun to keep the interior and therefore the horses cool.
These are just a few points concerning the Helios horsebox shape and we hope you can see why it is unlike any other horsebox on the road.