Navistar reveals hybrid International SuperTruck II

Navistar hybrid International SuperTruck II.

Outstanding advances in fuel efficiency are just some of the revelations offered by Navistar’s International SuperTruck II.

As part of an ongoing project in partnership with the US Department of Energy (DOE), the SuperTruck II program aims to reduce dependency on fossil fuels and increase Class 8 vehicle efficiencies.

For Navistar, the International SuperTruck II platform enabled it to focus on the next generation of vehicle efficiency improvements through hybridisation and aerodynamics resulting in a 170 per cent improvement in vehicle freight efficiency.

The vehicle demonstrated 16 miles per gallon (MPG) fuel efficiency through hybridisation among other advancements over the 2009 baseline vehicle, known as the International SuperTruck I. Delivering 55 per cent engine brake thermal efficiency, the vehicle afforded an assessment of total cost of ownership (TCO) opportunities for individual technologies, and high-voltage electrification efforts modelling hybrid technologies that can be utilised for fully electric vehicles.

According to Navistar, the SuperTruck II has also proven innovative technical approaches to weight reduction from rolling resistance technologies, aerodynamic improvements, and powertrain technologies.

“With co-funding by the DOE, Navistar engineers experimented with prospective technologies not currently available in the Class 8 truck market to accelerate the impact of sustainable mobility,” said Russ Zukouski, Chief Engineer, Global Innovation and Principal Investigator for the Supertruck programs.

“The team concentrated its design on high-voltage electrification, utilising hybrid technology on a path toward full electrification that has the potential to be commercialised in fully electric vehicles and improve customers’ total cost of ownership and business operations.”

Highlighting Navistar’s commitment to an electrified future, International SuperTruck II was built as a hybrid vehicle featuring a combustion engine with high-voltage accessories and technologies, developed in partnership with Bosch.

Navistar was the only OEM to build a trailer to provide the most accurate testing results possible, according to Dean Oppermann, Chief Engineer, Advanced Truck.

“It includes a 100 per cent composite box designed for minimum aerodynamic drag with light weight, integrated cross members, controlled underbody flow with composite aero treatments, next-generation solar panels with connectivity options, and ride height control,” he said.

Engine improvements were made in key areas including combustion, friction, gas exchange, and airflow through the engine.

A redesigned cylinder head with dual overhead cam engine and enhanced fuel system resulted in a 2 per cent fuel economy improvement when compared to International SuperTruck I.

Aftertreatment system improvements included diesel exhausted fluid (DEF) dosing, improved mixing and lower restrictions, new selective catalytic reduction (SCR) formulations for high-NOx reduction and reduced cold-start activation time.

Navistar was able to identify new ways to push its engines to the next level of efficiency the company said in a statement.

“A full system approach was required to achieve 55.2 per cent brake thermal efficiency,” said Jim Cigler, Chief Engineer, Advanced Engine.

“Opportunities were identified by internal engineering teams along with research partner Argonne National Laboratory through detailed analysis and simulation. System suppliers such as Bosch, Jacobs Vehicle Systems, and Applied Nano Systems (ANS) brought new approaches to key systems that enabled laboratory success and yielded real-world fuel economy improvements.”

International SuperTruck II highlighted connectivity with next-generation predictive cruise control, as well as leveraging technologies and information within the larger TRATON Group, which includes MAN Truck & Bus and Scania, to explore vehicle-to-everything technologies to enhance safety and vehicle efficiencies.

“Our goal is to continue to advance internal combustion engine technology as efficiently and sustainably as possible until there is parity with zero-emissions vehicles,” said Oppermann.

“Development of both technologies concurrently ensures a smooth transition of technology to best serve customer needs. We are focused on the entire product ecosystem — product development itself, as well as infrastructure charging, service and support of vehicle operation, end of life for batteries.”

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