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Ontario to unveil new truck emissions tests

August 27, 2019 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — Plenty has changed since Ontario first rolled out its Drive Clean emissions tests in 1999, not the least of which is the cleaner air that passes through truck exhaust stacks. The jurisdiction plans to unveil a renewed program this fall.

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Airless tires, autonomous tech, and future of mobility at Movin’On

June 4, 2019 by John Smith

MONTREAL, Que. – The annual Movin’On Summit is a free-flowing think tank of sorts, sharing ideas about sustainable transportation against a backdrop that looks something like the setting for a post-apocalyptic movie. Maybe the exhibit at a modern art museum.

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Don’t discount propane in the search for alternative fuels

May 9, 2019 by John Smith

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Diesel and gasoline are clearly the most common fuels used by Canadian trucks, but many people might be surprised to discover that the third most widely used transportation fuel is something other than natural gas. It’s propane.

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Will emission-reducing tires sacrifice traction?

April 12, 2019 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — Drivers fret about traction all the time. They get pretty excited even if they just perceive that a certain tread type doesn’t look grippy enough. But will the next round of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission cuts and their demands for tires with lower rolling resistance cause traction problems or compromise braking?

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Climate change leads to new approaches for ice roads

April 4, 2019 by John Smith

WINNIPEG, Man. — The Canada’s Changing Climate Report is sounding the alarm about global warming in Canada. Those who build and maintain the ice roads used to truck loads into the far north are already feeling the effects.

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The ‘long and forced’ march toward lower truck emissions continues

March 18, 2019 by John Smith

ATLANTA, Ga. – The push to reduce vehicle emissions has been relentless. Eaton’s Mihai Dorobantu, director – technology planning and government affairs, refers to it as nothing less than a “long and forced march”. And it’s not done yet.

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The business of clean air continues to grow

September 24, 2018 by John Smith

HANNOVER, Germany – Discussions about emissions standards are often anchored around the rules that govern trucks in North America and Europe, but John Wehrenberg knows the business opportunities don’t end there. The Tenneco executive points to India’s plans for the […]

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Future glider kits will have more restrictions

August 14, 2018 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — Glider kit trucks have been around for decades, and by the look of the regulatory landscape, they will continue to be available to consumers in years to come. But with a few more restrictions than we have […]

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Switchin’ to Glide: Registering glider kits could be a problem

August 14, 2018 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — There are hundreds if not thousands of trucks rumbling across this land that aren’t really trucks at all. They are legally defined as “an assemblage of parts” that someone has bolted together and turned into a truck. Otherwise known as glider kits, these vehicles create headaches for regulators — and some may soon cause their owners a little grief as well.

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Volvo showcases an electric future

June 20, 2018 by John Smith

GOTHENBURG, Sweden – Volvo Trucks has revealed a vision of the future, and it involves plugging into the power of electricity – especially when it comes to electric trucks.

This spring the global manufacturer announced that it will produce electric versions of European FL and FE models beginning in 2019, initially focusing on refuse and urban distribution applications.

These are hardly Volvo’s first foray into electric vehicles, though. The company has already produced about 4,000 electric-hybrid and battery-electric buses, and the trucks and buses will share many underlying technologies such as electric motors and charging systems.

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Dirty Secrets: Carriers call for emissions crackdown

May 29, 2018 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — Clean air comes at a cost, and it involves the emissions-related changes to exhaust systems and engines, sometimes introducing added maintenance costs and reduced fuel economy in the process.

That’s led to one of the trucking industry’s worst-kept dirty secrets. Many truck owners are reprogramming electronic control modules to bypass SCR (selective catalytic reduction) systems, which reduce unwanted NOx by introducing diesel exhaust fluid to the combustion process.

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Bosch slashes NOx, without adding components

May 24, 2018 by John Smith

Flat Rock, Mich. – Bosch says it has pioneered an emissions reduction technology that can cut NOx emissions to 10% of levels seen with current diesel-powered cars, and without adding components. Not only that, the company says the technology can be scaled up for use in medium- and heavy-duty diesel engines.

The supplier based in Stuttgart, Germany, unveiled the technology in April and offered further details during a North American press event this week.

Alex Freitag, director of engineering with Bosch’s powertrain solutions group, said the new approach to NOx emissions will keep diesel engines in the game for years to come without adding significant costs to the vehicle.

“The value proposition of the diesel engine is maintained with a minimal impact on fuel economy,” he said.

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2021: The Medium-Duty Emissions Odyssey

May 8, 2018 by John Smith

TORONTO, Ont. — The next round of greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations is due in 2021, but the model year of trucks affected by the rule will actually hit the road about two years from now. And while fleets that operate Class 7 and 8 heavy-duty trucks are already losing sleep over the rule, a significant share of the population operating medium-duty trucks doesn’t even know these rules exist.

They’re the kinds of trucks operated by businesspeople and contractors who sees vehicle as a tool for some other business. Think electricians, landscapers, bakers, and plumbers. Their passion is their business, not the truck they use.

“Back when the 2007 and 2010, soot and NOx emissions rules kicked in. We had to educate our customers on those changes, as dramatic as they were,” says Brian Tabel, executive director of marketing for Isuzu Commercial Truck of America. “Most of them didn’t know the change was in place, but they sure noticed the price jump between 2006 and 2010 [Model Year] trucks. Customers that had bought pre-emissions 2006 trucks and were shopping for another one in 2010 were shocked. They were mostly utterly unaware of the changes that had occurred over the past 10 years.”

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Volvo electrifies in Europe … again

May 8, 2018 by John Smith

GOTHENBURG, Sweden – Volvo Trucks has unveiled another electric truck in the form of the Volvo FE, just three weeks after unveiling its first all-electric truck in the form of the Volvo FL.

The FE is designed for city distribution and refuse operations with gross weights up to 59,500 lb.

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UPS executive challenges fleets to ‘define excellence’

March 6, 2018 by John Smith

ATLANTA, Ga. — Carlton Rose, president, global fleet maintenance and engineering at UPS, is challenging the trucking industry to define the excellence needed to realize cleaner cities, safer vehicles, and underlying technical knowledge.
“If you’re the one who defines excellence, then you’re the one who shapes expertise to achieve it,” Rose said.