The excitement was almost tangible: during the testing days for the International Forklift Truck of the Year (IFOY) last week at the Hannover Messe trade fair venue, 25 jury members tested the nominated vehicles from BYD, Crown, Jungheinrich, SSI Schäfer, Still and Toyota that had previously been nominated for the final round.
One hundred invited guests made the trip to Hannover to watch the tests as they were being carried out in Hall 9.
The first jury testing day began with the presentation of the nominated intralogistics solutions. The team from Crown presented the nominated QuickPick remote order picking solution implemented at Jumbo Supermarkten to the jury in the Hermes Tower of Deutsche Messe.
SSI Schäfer showcased its shuttle solution for NextLevel Logistik.
Hamburg-based intralogistics provider Still showed a pallet-shuttle high-bay warehouse with iGoEasy system for the Miehlen logistics centre of the Heuchemer Verpackung company.
All this was preceded by just under a week of lifting, driving, measuring and stacking. The 10 new trucks that were nominated were put through their paces during a comprehensive testing protocol and the IFOY "Innovation Check" in Hall 9 of Deutsche Messe.
The latter was performed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics (IML) in Dortmund and the Chair of Machine Elements and Technical Logistics at the Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg, and assesses in particular the innovative features of the trucks and the degree of innovation relative to the market.
The IFOY test measures the "hard data" of each machine and compares it with the data for rival trucks. Both testing series form the basis for the final vote of the jury.
The award ceremony and announcement of the winners will take place on the opening day of the CeMAT fair on 31st May in Hannover.