Marketplace Spring Roundup

Overdrive Staff | May 01, 2012

Kenworth unveils aerodynamic T680

Kenworth says its engineers spent five years working on the T680’s design, saying it’s the most aerodynamic tractor the company has ever built.

Kenworth’s new Model T680 features a sculpted full-height roof, optimized bumper and hood, full-height side extenders, cab/sleeper-to-fairings closeout panels, chassis fairings extenders and flush-mounted lighting.

Compared with similar models, it has a 10 percent enhancement in aerodynamics, 65 percent more storage capacity, a 50 percent larger windshield, 40 percent less interior noise, 30 percent larger door openings and best-in-class forward lighting, the truck maker says.

The T680 is designed to maximize performance in line-haul, pickup and delivery and regional operations. Available with a new 76-inch sleeper or as a daycab, the T680’s standard engine is the 2.9-liter Paccar MX. The Cummins ISX15 is optional.

The T680’s new 76-in. sleeper is integrated with the truck’s cab. It’s 96 inches wide with a high ceiling, 60 cubic feet of storage and a full-height wardrobe cabinet.

The truck’s cab is 83 inches wide with 23 inches of space between the seats. Premium Diamond VIT and Vantage trim levels are available for the interior, with two color options of Sandstone Tan and Slate Gray.

Executive Editor Jack Roberts took the new Kenworth for a test drive in Louisville, Ky. Here’s some of what he had to say about the tractor’s interior:

My test-drive truck was a regional-cab tractor with an MX13 engine and an Eaton 10-speed manual gear box. Kenworth’s all-new seat design features an advanced air-suspension system and multiple lumbar and recline adjustments. Combined with the new tilt/telescoping steering wheel, the overall design makes it easy to get comfortable quickly.

Another nice touch is the redsigned dash board. If there’s a theme here, it has to be simplicity. Truck dashes have become crammed with competing information systems that can be difficult and distracting to operate, but everything in the T680’s cab is laid out logically and ergonomically. Critical engine and vehicle data are arranged in the new A cluster directly in front of the driver, with auxiliary controls and switches within easy reach on the center cluster. Toggle switches glow green when activated to allow drivers to tell at a glance if they’re on.

For Roberts’ full review of the tractor, visit




Cummins 15-liter natural gas engine

Cummins is developing a 15-liter spark-ignited natural gas engine for on-highway applications. The ISX15 G will be based on the ISX15 diesel, and its three-way catalyst will not require exhaust aftertreatment. Expected to be in limited production in 2014, the engine will run on compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas or biomethane.

Cummins also unveiled a prototype of its advanced waste heat expander. The system can reduce fuel consumption by up to 6 percent, the company says, delivering fuel savings of between $4,000 (typical heavy-duty cycle) and $40,000 (typical high-horsepower cycle), depending on the application and engine power.




Ingersoll trailer suspensions

The Ingersoll Suspension System has been years in the making, the company says, and features an I-beam trailing beam design, a fully wrapped axle connection and standard parts to help maintenance needs. The line includes 15 different trailer suspension designs offered in conjunction with its full line of axles, which include standard, drop-center, steerable, in-line and other configurations.




Daimler releases Detroit Transmission

The new Detroit transmission initially will be paired with the DD15 in the Freightliner Cascadia. “Automated transmissions represent the next generation of technology that will increase efficiency and enhance performance,” said Martin Daum, chief executive officer for Daimler Trucks North America.

Daimler Trucks North America’s new Detroit Transmission completes the manufacturer’s goal of full powertrain integration to complement its Detroit axle and heavy-duty-engine offerings.

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