Print 80 comment(s) - last by Jedi2155.. on Aug 11 at 11:44 PM

Big rigs need to cut fuel consumption up to 23%

Having high fuel efficiency in a vehicle is a great thing for the driver because they can spend less on fuel. Having higher fuel economy on vehicles across the automotive market will reduce the need to import foreign oil and will help to reduce overall pollution as well. The big downside is that the cost of the tech to improve fuel economy is not cheap and that cost will be passed onto the car buyer.

The Obama administration today outlined its Heavy-Duty National Program [PDF] fuel economy standards for heavy-duty vehicles like semis, concrete trucks, dump trucks, and other heavy work trucks. Rather than targeting a specific mile per gallon rating  for the heavy-duty vehicles – like what has been proposed for passenger vehicles -- Obama is going to target a percentage of fuel savings.

The reason for this significant difference in fuel savings is according to the administration imposing a MPG standard on this sort of vehicle would be very confusing considering that the range of categories is wide and the payload and duties in the segment vary widely.

The administration wants a 9% saving in fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for work trucks (fire trucks, garbage trucks, and busses, etc.). Gasoline swilling heavy-duty trucks and vans will need to see a reduction of 10% with diesel versions needing to see a 15% savings. Big rigs have the most stringent cuts at up to 23%.

The regulatory announcement also makes the following claims with regards to recouping the added cost associated with adopting more fuel efficient technologies: 

Using technologies commercially available today, the majority of vehicles will see a payback period of less than one year, while others, especially those with lower annual miles, will experience payback periods of up to two years. For example, an operator of a semi truck can pay for the technology upgrades in under a year, and have net savings up to $73,000 over the truck’s useful life.

The new standards will apply to covered vehicles in the 2014 to 2018 range. The hope is to cut 530 million barrels of oil consumption and $50 billion in fuel costs over the life of the vehicles with the new standards in place.

The cost to meet the new standards on the varying vehicle types are expected to be in the range of hundreds of dollars to thousands of dollars per vehicle.

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RE: todays laugh
By Gungel on 8/9/2011 4:19:09 PM , Rating: 2
Changing aerodynamics can save 50% in fuel. Check out this video about the industrial designer Luigi Colani:

RE: todays laugh
By Souka on 8/9/2011 7:36:59 PM , Rating: 3
I like how the video the guy says "up to" a lot...seems more vaporware...

Also,potientally save %50 on fuel bill for over a 4x startup cost on the truck..
How much is a windshield on one of those? Oh yeah, you can't get one.

But... I'd really like to see these badboys on the road...that would be sweet! :)

RE: todays laugh
By Souka on 8/9/2011 7:40:40 PM , Rating: 2
sorry, I meant 14x startup cost (a new cab runs about $75k)

RE: todays laugh
By TheEinstein on 8/10/2011 9:34:15 AM , Rating: 1
Dear God the clown opened his mouth again! BAD OBAMA!

Consider slowly who can afford a $200,000 truck. Not small businesses, not drivers. Cost savings my ass.

Every step Obama, and the EPA, has done has made things harder on us. We have to combine an additive to our emissions now and this costs us money and reduces our efficiency.

We have a literal oven on our exhaust to cook loose fuel and carbon into 'something less'. This costs us money and reduces our efficiency.

If the silly Democrats, Liberals, and Environuts would get out of our way we would have already had 10 miles to the Gallon as an average.

Currently 100% of research is dedicated to trying, desperately, to find a way to meet the next level of environmental requirements (consensus is that we cannot create the technology and deploy it fast enough at the moment in the industry).

Fuel efficiency would have been nice, but under these nuts there is no chance except minor increases.

I currently get 6mpg in my truck I drive now. I used to drive trucks with a 7mpg average. I understand what even a 10% increase in ability would mean.

However this new additive stuff puts a huge damper on any desires I have of purchasing a 'new' truck. Kill that and tomorrow I will seek a loan for a truck without the additive stuff.

Oh and a final note KILL THE 2011 RULES THE DOT IS INSTALLING before it kills 300,000 jobs!

RE: todays laugh
By cjohnson2136 on 8/10/2011 10:40:42 AM , Rating: 2
Consider slowly who can afford a $200,000 truck. Not small businesses, not drivers. Cost savings my ass.

You do realize big rigs are expensive NOW. My neighbor is a retired truck driver. His rig cost him 150,000. This rigs are not cheap now. Why would you expect them to be cheap in 2018.

RE: todays laugh
By StanO360 on 8/9/2011 8:30:05 PM , Rating: 2
Yes it's cool, but the assumption is that most of the fuel is spent due poor aerodynamics. Why haven't cars seen 50% increases when they are made aerodynamic?

In other words I'm skeptical, is it worth pursuing? Of course, but there are a lot of variable besides aerodynamics.

RE: todays laugh
By Calin on 8/11/2011 2:48:39 AM , Rating: 2
I love how he only talks about the front end. I think the "tail end" is more damaging to aerodynamics than the front end, and that isn't under any kind of driver control

RE: todays laugh
By Jedi2155 on 8/11/2011 11:44:20 PM , Rating: 2
Why couldn't they just put a giant cone at the end for the long haul trucks and remove them at the their trip?

Similar to how the space shuttle has a cone during their 747 flights.

Just make sure its easy to put on and off, then you could talk about lots of fuel savings.

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