Cummins Unveils New Hybrid, Engine Concepts At IAA

By Mike Brezonick19 September 2018

Cummins Inc. used the IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Germany to highlight its vision of the future of hybrid and diesel engine technology.

The PowerDrive system is a suite of plug-in parallel and series hybrid electric powertrain solutions spanning light, medium and heavy-duty applications. The technology was center stage at the Cummins booth in an electric hybrid utility truck, a Kenworth T370.

The Cummins PowerDrive 6000 is paired with a Cummins B6.7 in the Kenworth T370, a Class 6 truck. The vehicle’s gross weight is 33,000 lb. The PowerDrive replaces the conventional transmission and switches in real time between two hybrid and two pure electric modes, optimizing the powertrain for the best fuel economics in any driving situation. The vehicle is also configured with exportable grid quality electric power to recharge vehicles and a recovery crane operating on either electric or engine power take-off.

The flexible hybrid architecture is engineered to seamlessly shift between pure electric for environmentally sensitive areas with a 50-mile (80 km) range and hybrid for jobs requiring more than 300 miles (480 km).

Cummins said the PowerDrive system has travelled more than six million miles in a fleet setting in the United States and China, and work is underway to introduce it to the European market in the near future. Its flexible architecture means the PowerDrive system can be combined with various sizes of diesel or natural gas engines and battery pack outputs, the company said.

“With a 100-year-long track record of powering our customers’ success, Cummins demonstrates once again that we are transforming the future of transportation by offering our customers the broadest and most cutting-edge power portfolio backed by our expansive service capabilities,” said Julie Furber, Cummins executive director of Electrified Power.

Furber said “Cummins is ready to offer the new PowerDrive suite through our OEM partners. We look forward to discussing how the PowerDrive’s compact packaging envelope and weight saving benefits will enable OEMs to produce PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicles) vehicles for diverse needs without compromising performance or range.”

Cummins’ new concept emissions control system combines the turbocharged air management with the exhaust aftertreatment as a single close-coupled system, together with a new rotary turbine control (RTC).

Also at IAA, Cummins displayed technologies to achieve a low nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions future and a reduction in the carbon footprint. Included was a concept emissions control system capable of minimizing emissions to levels previously thought unfeasible, including a possible next level of Euro regulations anticipated during the coming decade.

“This innovative system allows further reduction in NOx and PM emissions, while simultaneously improving fuel efficiency,” said Tim Proctor, Cummins executive director of Product Management & Market Innovation. “While Cummins has a vigorous electrification program underway, our other key message at IAA is that the diesel engine is not standing still.

“With our technical advancements, we see diesel remaining as the primary source of power in the commercial vehicle sector for the foreseeable future. Cummins is committed to ensuring the power of choice is available for our customer’s many different vehicle types, duty cycles and business requirements.”

The concept emissions control system now under development by Cummins combines the turbocharged air management with the exhaust aftertreatment as a single close-coupled system, together with a new rotary turbine control (RTC). This new design fully utilizes Cummins latest advances in air and thermal management to immediately convert almost all NOx emissions to clean gas as it interacts with the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) unit.

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