Volvo Trucks boosts fuel savings with MY 2016 enhancements

Volvo Trucks’ model year 2016 VN series heavy-duty highway tractors will deliver greater fuel savings than previous generation models through an assortment of aerodynamic and powertrain enhancements. Further sculpting of airflow around the exterior and underneath the hood improves fuel efficiency by up to 3.5%. Volvo’s new XE-Adaptive Gearing and Torque Management options can provide fuel efficiency improvements of more than 2.5%.

Enhancements to the bumper, chassis and roof fairings of model year 2016 VN series highway tractors reduce air turbulence around the vehicle exterior and improve airflow under the truck, around tires and the trailer gap. Reducing turbulence and disruptions in airflow from the tractor to the trailer helps improve fuel efficiency.

Building on its XE (eXceptional Efficiency) powertrain packages, Volvo will offer an XE-Adaptive Gearing package to further boost fuel efficiency for operations that go out loaded and return empty or lightly loaded, such as bulk haulers, liquid tankers and flatbed carriers. XE-Adaptive Gearing provides the same benefits for dry van trailers operating under the same conditions.

The system is both a direct and overdrive driveline depending on rear axle load, which the system senses in real-time. When loaded, the transmission locks out the 12th gear and provides the performance and fuel efficiency benefits of direct drive. During unloaded or lightly loaded trips, the driveline operates in overdrive, providing enhanced fuel efficiency and even greater driver comfort.

Customers can select road speed limits for loaded and unloaded portions of the trip, customizing their vehicle speeds to fit operating needs. XE-Adaptive Gearing engine ratings will initially be available for Volvo’s D11 and D13 engines paired with an I-Shift automated manual transmission.

Volvo Trucks is also offering three new torque control features designed to increase fuel efficiency, tire life and decrease driveline stress. The expanded offerings utilize Volvo’s numerous multi-torque engine profiles to provide optimized torque management in multiple operating environments.

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2015 Chevrolet City Express achieves 24 mpg city

Chevrolet announced today the fuel economy for the 2015 City Express cargo van. The company’s first entry into the small van segment will offer an EPA-estimated 24 mpg city and 26 mpg highway, resulting in 25 mpg combined.

The vehicle’s 2.0L dual-overhead cam inline-four-cylinder engine matched to a continuously variable transmission allows the vehicle to achieve greater efficiency on the road, especially when driving in the city.

“The 2015 Chevrolet City Express is designed for our customers who are looking for a small, easy-to-maneuver, fuel-efficient, cargo-carrying vehicle,” said Ed Peper, U.S. vice president, GM Fleet & Commercial. “The fuel economy of the City Express will help stretch their dollar at the pump and give them the flexibility to invest the savings back into their business.”

All types of businesses – from florists to food delivery – will benefit from Chevrolet’s service and support, including two-year/24,000-mile (whichever comes first) standard maintenance that helps businesses keep their vehicles in shape and on the job. Read more »

Diesel Engines Emerging As New Tech for Future General Aviation

With several major aircraft and engine manufacturers recently announcing the development of new diesel aircraft engines, the general aviation industry in the United States appears to be entering a new diesel evolution phase, said Allen Schaeffer, the Executive Director of the Diesel Technology Forum.

In just the past month, aircraft and engine manufacturers like Cessna, Continental Motors, American Champion Aircraft, Lycoming and DeltaHawk Engines have announced new diesels for general aviation aircraft in the U.S., Schaeffer said. Read more »

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SCAQMD funding Siemens test of eHighway overhead catenary system for electric trucks

Siemens will conduct trials of its eHighway system in California on a two-mile (3.2 km) stretch of highway after installing a catenary system for electric and hybrid trucks in the vicinity of the largest US ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. This follows on a tentative agreement and design from last year.

The company was awarded the associated contract by Southern California’s South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD). The objective is to eliminate local emissions such as nitrogen oxides completely and to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels and cut the operating costs of trucks. The test results should be available in the summer of 2016, and will indicate the suitability of the systems for future commercial use. Read more »