ArvinMeritor Delivers Hybrid Diesel-Electric Class 8 Truck to Key Partner
Designed to meet current Class 8 linehaul requirements for payload capacity, performance, and durability
Dual mode hybrid drivetrain allows extended operation in battery-only zero-emission mode, eliminates idling
Propelled by an electric motor under 48 mph, transitioning to diesel power at highway speeds
TROY, Mich., February 3, 2009: ArvinMeritor Inc. announced today that the company presented Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Bentonville, Ark., with a prototype heavy-duty truck equipped with the first Meritor(R) diesel-electric drivetrain.
Wal-Mart Transportation operates nearly 7,200 heavy-duty trucks in North America and has committed to doubling its fleet efficiency by 2015. Wal-Mart will test and evaluate the vehicle in regular linehaul service at one of its distribution centers throughout 2009.
"While most hybrid systems today are best suited for start-stop applications, our hybrid drivetrain is specifically designed for linehaul, over-the-road trucks, the largest segment of the commercial vehicle population," said Carsten J. Reinhardt, president of ArvinMeritor's Commercial Vehicle Systems (CVS) business.
The Meritor dual-mode hybrid drivetrain combines both mechanical and electrical propulsion systems. Under 48 miles-per-hour, vehicle propulsion is delivered entirely through an electric motor with power from lithium ion batteries. These batteries are recharged through regenerative braking and/or an engine-driven generator.
As the vehicle approaches highway speed, the drivetrain phases to a diesel-powered system with the electric motor providing power, only as required, allowing for total system optimization.
The key differentiation of this system is its ability for zero-emission mode over a wide range of vehicle driving conditions. This allows the truck to operate in places where emissions are restricted, like a port or urban area.
Additionally, the batteries provide continuous power for hotel loads during an overnight rest period, eliminating the need for engine idling or other redundant anti-idling systems. Electrification of accessories such as the air or AC compressors provides further efficiency benefits.
The Meritor hybrid drivetrain was developed in collaboration with Navistar and Cummins and is comprised of a proprietary motor/generator unit, high capacity lithium ion batteries, as well as the overall power-management system. Also outfitted on the Walmart tractor are a Meritor tandem drive axle, and an advanced MeritorWABCO anti-lock braking system with integrated stability control and driver assistance systems.
The majority of commercial trucks on the road today are Class 8 vehicles - more than 2.7 million in the United States alone. These trucks log roughly 130 billion miles and consume nearly 53 billion gallons of fuel each year. Collectively, truck fleets spent about $111 billion on diesel fuel in 2007 when the average national retail price was $2.68 a gallon.