Efficiency of logistics tugger trains.

How to achieve better performance at lower costs?

The intralogistics systems that we design using the tugger train concept are based on the so-called milk-run principle. What does it consist of? A fixed route is developed for the delivery and collection of goods, with the end and beginning at the same place. Moving around a closed loop, one tugger train completes several steps in the process in a single run.

By transferring this concept to intralogistics, we facilitate the work of production plants and warehouses.


  • A material flow process is smoother;
  • Deliveries by tugger trains are more frequent, but in smaller batches;
  • Components are delivered to the stations by tugger trains exactly when they are needed;
  • Elimination of empty runs – materials can be delivered to various stations in a single run;
  • Time and cost savings – what is transported three times with a forklift can be transported in a single run on a tugger train.


Atres research tugger trains

Comparison of running systems


Classic system - front drawbar


  • Easy to maneuver when unplugged



  • Non-perfect tracing – each wagon traces on its own
  • Needs wide corridors

Inverted drawbar


  • More accurate tracking than with a straight drawbar
  • Swivel front wheels, fixed rear wheels – easy to maneuver when unfastened



  • Non-perfect tracing – each wagon traces on its own


4-wheel steering system


  • Perfect tracing
  • Suitable for narrow transport routes



  • Difficult to manoeuvre when unplugged




A logistic tugger train has significant advantages over a forklift truck.


  • many times greater transport efficiency – one tugger train will do the job
  • several carts at the same time
  • elimination of empty runs
  • possibility of combining various tugger trains into sets, minimizing the necessary vehicles
  • flexibility and easy adjustment to production needs
  • safety and less traffic
  • simple operation, no additional qualifications and permissions required to run a tugger train


  • low transport efficiency
  • high wastage in transport
  • no possibility of combining vehicles and low level of adaptation to the specificity of the loading
  • increased traffic on transport routes and loading areas
  • high risk of accidents and collisions
  • only authorized drivers can be forklift operators

How much do you gain with a tugger train? A calculation is simple.

Buying forklift trucks that will work 24/7 is a huge investment. Their maintenance is also very expensive. To achieve the same capacity as with a tugger train system, you need more vehicles and more staff.


The cost of buying a tugger train necessary to achieve the same capacity is a fraction of the cost of buying and maintaining an entire fleet of forklift trucks. One tugger train can consist of several wagons, so more goods than a forklift truck. At the same time, it reduces the number of staff needed.

When comparing the 5-year service life of both solutions, the milk-run is 5 times cheaper. Even with a small intralogistics system, you can save up to several hundred euros in the first year after the change!

Do you want to save on your intralogistics fleet?

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