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GATS News: Kenworth advancing in multiple classes

DALLAS, Tex. -- Kenworth Truck Company had on display, for the first time, a PACCAR heavy-duty engine in a Kenworth...

Kenworth will begin production of the medium-duty T370 in the fourth quarter.
Kenworth will begin production of the medium-duty T370 in the fourth quarter.

DALLAS, Tex. — Kenworth Truck Company had on display, for the first time, a PACCAR heavy-duty engine in a Kenworth Class 8 model, during the Great American Trucking Show (GATS).

A Kenworth T800 test truck with a 12.9-liter PACCAR engine produced for the North American market, was on display at the truck show in Dallas from Aug. 23 to 25. The Kenworth test truck is part of a fleet of vehicles with PACCAR engines undergoing extensive testing in North America.

Kenworth is testing PACCAR heavy-duty engines in a wide variety of applications, terrains and climate conditions. The engine test program includes test cell work, testing on the PACCAR Technical Center track in Mount Vernon, Wash, and road tests, said Mike Dozier, Kenworth chief engineer. These tests are serving to validate designs and manufacturing processes and will ensure that these heavy-duty engines will be ready for eventual introduction into Kenworth Class 8 trucks.

PACCARs DAF division in Europe has 50 years of experience in heavy-duty diesel engine design and manufacturing. PACCAR is leveraging this experience and quality as it works toward supplying engines for Kenworth Class 8 trucks in North America. PACCAR broke ground at its new engine plant in Columbus, Miss., in July. The $400 million facility will include a 420,000 sq.-ft. engine plant and technology centre on a 400-acre site. Construction is due to be completed in 2009.

Some of the new engines will be installed at the Kenworth plant in Chillicothe, Ohio, which recently completed a 105,000 sq.-ft. expansion.

Also on display at GATS were the PACCAR PX-6 and PX-8 medium-duty engines. The engines are available for Kenworths medium-duty conventional products and will also be featured in two new models getting set for production. The new Kenworth medium-duty conventional models will enter production in the fourth quarter of this year.

The Kenworth T270 Class 6 and T370 Class 7 models will provide outstanding quality, performance and durability and are great additions to Kenworths medium-duty product line, said Gary Moore, Kenworth assistant general manager for marketing and sales. Customers will appreciate the world-class lighting system, stylish hood and grille, and excellent value for a wide range of medium duty applications.

Kenworth T270 and T370 applications include food and beverage distributors, propane and fuel fleets, towing and recovery operators, general construction and landscape firms, and dry, refrigerated and side-curtain van operations.

Both models are available with the PACCAR PX-6 engine rated to 325 hp and 750 ft-lb of torque; and with the PACCAR PX-8 engine rated to 330 hp and 1,000 ft-lb of torque. Customers can choose manual or automatic transmissions, as well as air or hydraulic brakes. Both models offer many exhaust options for the various wheelbases, especially important to body builders that work with medium-duty customers.

The Kenworth T270 and T370 feature a hood made of sheet molded composite (SMC) for enhanced fit and finish, while a new hood assist device and 90-degree hood tilt opening offer increased access to the engine compartment for ease of service. A one-piece chrome or painted bumper and new Metton quarter fenders provide additional durability and impact resistance.

Inside is an ergonomically-friendly, wrap-around instrument panel with large, easy-to-read, glare-free gauges. Standard features will include power door locks, passenger-side electric windows (optional on the drivers side), and Kenworth DayLite doors with peeper window. Drivers will also experience a 50-degree wheel cut for enhanced maneuverability.

Kenworths medium-duty product line will continue to include the K260 Class 6 and K360 Class 7 cabover models.

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