MONTREAL, Que. -- Fuel economy testing that will compare the fuel economy of a European Volvo cabover to that of a North American conventional tractor, are back on at Transport Canada’s Blainville, Que. plant.
The tests, conducted by FPInnovations’ Performance Innovation Transport (PIT), were originally scheduled to be held in September, but the European Volvo got held up at Customs. The trucks are being supplied by Robert Transport.
They include a 2014 Volvo Globetrotter European tractor, with Euro 5 emissions, 460 hp, 1,696 lb.-ft. or torque, an I-Shift transmission and 2.57 rear axle ratio, and a 2014 Volvo VNL 630, with 425 hp, 1,650-2,050 lb.-ft. of torque, the I-Shift direct drive transmission and 2.64 rear axle ratios.
“The goal of these trials, like all evaluations by PIT, is to use our controlled test-track fuel efficiency studies to provide the commercial vehicle industry with the information it needs to make sound equipment choices,” said Yves Provencher, director of PIT. “We are uniquely equipped to identify the real value of each technology so fleet operators can focus their implementation efforts where they get the best return on their capital investment.”
The European truck will be modified to accommodate its 24-volt power. Its fifth wheel height was adjusted to 47 inches.
PIT will use the SAE J1526 Type III fuel consumption testing protocol in its evaluation
“PIT will continue to monitor these trucks closely because operational issues may play a role in their real world performance,” Provencher said. “For example, North American loads are generally heavier than those hauled in Europe. Also, our speeds are faster so aerodynamics, which has more of an impact at higher speeds, may not be optimized.”
The results will be shared laster this year. Following the test trials, Robert will be using both trucks in various applications, to evaluate ride, handling, comfort and driver acceptance. The European tractor is not permitted for use in the US.