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Truck maker Volvo to launch hybrid engine in 2009

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Variance    0

Truck maker Volvo to launch hybrid engine in 2009

Reuters / March 10, 2006 - 8:00 am

STOCKHOLM -- Truck maker Volvo aims to begin mass production in 2009 of a hybrid diesel-electric truck engine which would cut fuel consumption by up to 35 percent, it said on Friday.

The Swedish group said that rising oil prices and political efforts to fight global warming by reducing emissions of carbon dioxide meant it now saw potential for a commercial launch of a more expensive, but more fuel-efficient hybrid truck engine.

The new engine runs on both diesel and electric power from a battery.

"The higher capital cost is compensated by lower fuel costs," Volvo CEO Leif Johansson told a news conference. "And then we are not counting on even higher fuel prices which could very well materialize, according to some forecasts."

Volvo said that the new engine would be economically viable mainly for short-haul trucks, buses and construction equipment as electric propulsion was used mainly in connection with starting and stopping and at low speeds.

"These are large segments of the market. We are talking about half of the overall heavy truck market and perhaps as much as 75 percent of the bus market and 100 percent of construction equipment," Johansson said on the sidelines of the conference. "The production volumes will to a great extent depend on the oil price. If the oil price stays at the current level or rises I am convinced that (this product) will have a major impact. We are talking at least several tens of thousands of vehicles (per year)."

Volvo said it had invested $44.4 million to $50.8 million (350 million to 400 million Swedish crowns) in developing the engine and related components and would spend "one or more" billions in setting up serial production.

Link: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti...G/60310005/1003

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Horizon    0

I hope that if these engines go to full electric power at low speeds, that there's some kind of sound (fake engine sounds) just so that people will be able to hear it coming at them. I say this because I was almost ran over by a Toyota Prius a while ago, as I didn't even hear it coming! Lady was speeding around a corner and I had barely enough time to react. I could only imagine one of these east coast drivers in box truck speeding around town. :o

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Satty    338

Good for Volvo, hopefully its a band-aid until they can make a hydrogen powered truck a la GM and their busses.

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PurdueGuy    72

'bout time someone looked into it.  Will also be interesting to see how the hydraulic hybrid stuff turns out, but that's another topic...

I know there are a lot of trucking companys buying up tractors and engines right now because new emissions laws will reduce fuel economy by like 1 mpg.  The tiniest bit of economy is worth big bucks in trucking.

Edited by PurdueGuy

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