The Department of Energy announced its new initiative, the SuperTruck II. The goal is to push manufacturers to improve heavy-duty freight efficiency by more than 100 percent compared to the most fuel efficient tractor-trailer from 2009.
The initiative is an $80 million funding opportunity for research, development and demonstration of long-haul technology. Improving the efficiency of commercial trucks will help reduce fuel consumption and improve effects on the environment.
SuperTruck II will utilize a variety of truck and trailer approaches to achieve performance targets including improvements in engine efficiency, drivetrain efficiency, aerodynamic drag, tire rolling resistance and vehicle weight.
The first SuperTruck was developed in 2010 and averaged a 75 percent increase in fuel economy, a 43 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and an 86 percent gain in freight efficiency compared to a 2009 baseline truck.
There were also three new cost-shared projects announced. These projects will focus on the research and development of plug-in electric powertrain technologies for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles.
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