Peterbilt expands truck lineup

by James Menzies

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Peterbilt introduced its new product lineup with a renewed focus on aerodynamics at the Mid-America Trucking Show.

The company says it has revamped its truck lineup as part of the company’s largest product development investment in its history.

“This is a landmark occasion for Peterbilt,” announced Dan Sobic, Peterbilt general manager and PACCAR vice-president. “Our new lineup of premium trucks represents the best new products Peterbilt has ever offered, setting new standards for quality, innovation, technology, versatility and styling.”

Trucks in the aero, traditional, vocational and medium-duty segments all received attention during the product lineup overhaul. Highlights included: The introduction of an aerodynamically-styled 387 day cab and 384, which join the existing 387 and 386 to round out Pete’s aero truck lineup; a new traditionally-styled 389 and 388; new vocational models including the 367 and 365; and new medium-duty trucks – the 340 and 330.

Aerodynamic trucks

The addition of the Model 387 day cab and Model 384 bring Peterbilt’s aerodynamic truck total to four. The existing 387 and the 386 will continue to be offered by the company.

“Reducing operating expenses through improved fuel efficiency is increasingly an industry priority,” pointed out Sobic. “Aerodynamically-styled trucks continue to gain in popularity and account for a growing portion of Peterbilt’s heavy-duty on-highway truck production. This trend will continue, and our expanded offering of aero trucks will meet that demand.”

The Model 387 day cab will be aimed at tanker and regional haul applications. It’s available in a medium-length and long-length BBC with front axle placement which is optimized for maneuverability and weight distribution, the company says.

The truck also features a sloped hood and large windshield for enhanced visibility.

“The Model 387 day cab meets two key criteria for our tanker and regional haul customers – visibility and maneuverability,” announced Landon Sproull, chief engineer with Peterbilt.

The Model 384 is a mid-length aerodynamic offering featuring a 116-inch BBC and set-back front axle for improved maneuverability in vocational and urban operations. It’s also lightweight for increased payloads, making it ideal for weight-sensitive operations, Sproull said. It’s available as a day cab or with a full range of sleepers.

“The lower radiator position and sloped hood combine to improve forward visibility by nearly 12 inches,” Sproull said. “It has the same advanced forward lighting system found on all of our aerodynamic truck models, which improves nighttime illumination by 43 per cent and reduces serviceability requirements with a 71 per cent improvement in bulb life.”

The position of the set-back front axle allows for 50 degrees of wheel cut, Sproull pointed out, and decreases the turning radius by 12 inches. The new models will be available in early 2007.

Traditional trucks

Peterbilt also added to its traditional truck lineup with the introduction of the Models 389 and 388. The new trucks feature improved aerodynamics, styling, durability, serviceability and forward lighting, the company said.

“Improving fuel efficiency is also a concern for customers of our traditional truck models and the new Model 389 and 388 can help them achieve more miles per gallon,” said Peterbilt general manager, Dan Sobic.

The new trucks feature all-new durable, yet lightweight, aluminum hoods, Sproull told reporters at the Mid-America Trucking Show.

The hoods open to a full 90-degree position and feature a new proprietary anti-blow-down locking mechanism to prevent them from being closed by wind or accidental contact.

The chassis of the 389 and 388 have been simplified to improve access to service points, Sproull said. The new tractors also feature a new lighter-weight cooling system that boasts the increased cooling capacity required to cool higher horsepower engines.

The new traditional trucks also feature new high-grade aluminum headlamps with complex-reflector technology the company says increases forward lighting by 226 per cent.

Bulb life has also been extended by 600 per cent, Sproull said. A durable, impact-resistant lens cover protects the new lighting assembly from damage.

The mirrors have been retooled to improve airflow, with the enhancements reducing drag by up to 40 per cent over the previous design, Sproull announced.

“The design and styling of the Model 389 and 388 achieve both form and function,” he added. “The results are improved aerodynamics and fuel efficiency, as well as enhancements to overall performance and durability.”

Both models can be spec’d with a new Fuel Efficiency Package which can further reduce fuel consumption. The package includes a new contoured roof fairing, an oval-shaped cab-mounted exhaust, aerodynamic air cleaners, streamlined tool and battery boxes and contoured bumper and underbody fairings.

Sobic said the long-length Model 389 will be preferred by owner/operators and image-conscience fleets while the shorter BBC Model 388 will be the truck of choice among fleets and O/Os in length-sensitive operations. Both tractors will be available in early 2007.

Vocational, medium-duty

Peterbilt has also added to its vocational and medium-duty truck lineups with the introduction of the Models 367, 365, 330 and 340.

On the vocational side, the Models 367 and 365 will join the Peterbilt truck lineup.

“The reliability, durability and productivity and Peterbilt’s vocational models have made them the preferred work trucks for a wide range of demanding applications,” said Sobic. “The Model 367 and 365 take these characteristics to an even higher level. They will be among the industry’s most versatile vocational vehicles and both will be available in set-forward and set-back front axle positions to comply with various state and federal bridge law requirements.”

The Model 367 will be available in a heavy-haul configuration featuring a high-capacity cooling system capable of cooling the highest horsepower engines available, Sobic added.

Sproull added the new chassis design allows for improved axle placement, improving maneuverability and weight distribution.

“The new chassis also improves ride and handling characteristics for enhanced operator comfort and productivity,” he said.

Both the 367 and 365 feature a new bumper that can accommodate both a center hook configuration and a dual, removable pin configuration that each meet TMC towing requirements. The new models also feature a new forward lighting system providing a 50 per cent improvement in low-beam performance and a 600 per cent extension in bulb life, the company said. Peterbilt’s medium-duty lineup has also been expanded with the introduction of the Model 330 and 340.

“The Model 330 and Model 340 join our award-winning Model 335 to provide our customers with medium-duty operations more choices than ever before,” said Sobic.

“The full range of Class 6 and 7 medium-duty truck GVWs will be available, accommodating everything from urban pickup and delivery to rugged construction applications.”

The 330 is a lightweight Class 6 configuration available with GVWs up to 26,000 lbs. It can be fitted with hydraulic brakes and low-profile tires making it operable by non-CDL drivers.

The 340 is available in 33,000 and higher GVWs and is best-suited for vocational, municipal and specialty applications.

The new medium-duty trucks will be available this summer.

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