Peterbilt to showcase heavy-duty hybrid 386 at SmartWay seminar

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Peterbilt Motors Co. announced Tuesday, Nov. 13, that it will showcase its Class 8 hybrid-electric vehicle – the Model 386 – in conjunction with the SmartWay of Going Green Seminar Thursday, Nov. 15, at the Ontario Trucking Association Convention.

“Peterbilt leads the way in the development of hybrid solutions in the heavy-duty market with our Model 386 hybrid-electric for customers as they battle higher fuel costs and place a greater emphasis on environmental stewardship,” says Bill Jackson, general manager of Denton, Texas-based Peterbilt and Paccar vice president.

The Model 386 heavy-duty hybrid, a joint-development vehicle with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Eaton Corp., utilizes a hybrid-electric system designed for long-haul applications and for both on-road and idle reduction fuel-efficiency gains. On the road, the expected fuel savings is 5 to 7 percent through improved launching, accelerating and hill-climbing capabilities, according to Peterbilt.

When the idle reduction mode is active, engine operation is limited to battery charging, an automatically controlled process that takes about five minutes per hour to fully charge the system. During rest periods, a 90 percent reduction in idling has been achieved while providing high-power A/C, 120VAC and 12VDC to accommodate the sleeper hotel loads, Peterbilt says.

Paccar, Peterbilt’s parent company, and Eaton recently announced they have entered into an exclusive agreement to jointly develop proprietary hybrid technology for heavy-duty commercial vehicles in North America. The new products will be introduced in Peterbilt Class 8 trucks for the North American market, targeted for initial production by the end of 2009.

Peterbilt’s two most aerodynamic trucks, the Models 387 and 386, have been recognized as fuel-efficient and environment-friendly by the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay program, which establishes a comprehensive set of fuel-saving, low-emissions equipment specifications for new Class 8 long-haul tractors and trailers. Peterbilt’s SmartWay-compliant vehicles offer customers fuel savings of between 10 and 20 percent, lower greenhouse gas emissions and reduced NOx, particulate matter and other air pollutants.