The Volvo Group will launch a 13-liter liquefied natural gas (LNG) engine within the Volvo brand for the North American market 2014. The engine’s high pressure diesel ignition technology will provide significant fuel efficiency gains compared with current natural gas products.
Combined with the group’s previously announced offering of compressed natural gas (CNG)-powered Volvo VNM and Volvo VNL model daycabs, the new engine will provide customers with a complete range of natural gas-powered transportation solutions. Within the Volvo brand, another fuel is being tested that can be produced from natural gas, DME (dimethyl ether), which has the potential to become an attractive alternative for the North American market.
“Despite the near-term infrastructure questions regarding widespread adoption of natural gas as a heavy-duty truck fuel, it’s clear this segment will grow over the next several years,” said Ron Huibers, president of Volvo Trucks North American Sales & Marketing.
Through advanced high pressure diesel ignition technology – using trace amounts of diesel to ignite the natural gas – Volvo’s LNG engine will deliver a 30 percent fuel efficiency improvement compared with spark-ignition (SI) engines, making it a viable alternative for demanding long-haul applications. The Volvo 13-liter LNG engine will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 20 percent compared with current diesel products. The company’s proprietary Volvo I-Shift automated mechanical transmission also will be available for customers to specify.