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March 14, 2012 Vol. 8, No. 6

There’s lots going on these days, so let’s dig right in. And I’ll start with gaseous fuels powering little trucks.

My recent back surgery kept me away from the Work Truck Show in Indianapolis but it seems that natural gas options were big news there. The so-called Detroit Big Three — is that now an anachronism? — all showed light-duty trucks powered by bi-fuel engines that run on both gasoline and CNG, and I’ll get to them in a minute. Let’s not forget propane, though, which seems to be making a resurgence.

Funny, but diesel/electric hybrids and to some lesser extent all-electric trucks have dominated the last few Work Truck shows and now seem to have faded a little. Is it just me seeing that? People will always go for an easier solution, and gaseous fuels are certainly that for the time being. I see a bandwagon element to all of this, but I also think that the propane option might just be a sleeper here. It’s going to be interesting to look at all this in five years’ time.

Anyway, the show featured the Propane Pavilion, and leading the way in there was Roush CleanTech displaying one of Frito Lay’s propane Ford E-350 cutaway delivery trucks (pictured here). Show-goers were also offered the chance to get behind the wheel of a Ford E-450 box truck, fueled by a Roush LPG system. And the company’s vice president of sales and marketing, Todd Mouw, made a presentation during the Green Truck Summit that preceded the show.

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Rolf Lockwood is editor emeritus of Today's Trucking and a regular contributor to

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