Starting in 2025, Freightliner will offer the new Cummins X15N natural gas engine in its Cascadia trucks with 126-inch BBC, in both sleeper and day cab configurations. The X15N is the first natural gas engine designed specifically for heavy-duty and on-highway truck applications with 400 to 500 hp and 1,450 to 1,850 lb.-ft. of torque.
“We have a number of customers that continue to run natural gas trucks today, and our goal is to provide those customers with the products, like the X15N, they need to operate successfully for their business,” said Greg Treinen, VP, on-highway market development, Daimler Truck North America. “The new X15N natural gas engine option for our Freightliner Cascadias complements our portfolio of solutions that help our customers run their fleets efficiently and sustainably.”
The new X15N achieves lower NOx levels than the 2024 EPA and CARB standards. Equally impressive is the 1,850 lb.-ft. of peak torque output provided by the X15N, which will allow for optimum performance when paired with the Eaton Cummins Endurant HD N Transmission and the availability of optimized EX ratings.
Field testing of the X15N engine is already underway. Knight Transportation recently realized reductions in NOx and greenhouse gas emissions since testing the engine in its fleet, and Werner Enterprises is also conducting field tests.
“We value our collaboration with Cummins and are encouraged by what we have seen so far with the 15-liter renewable natural gas technology,” said Dave Williams, Knight-Swift Transportation’s senior vice president of equipment and government relations. “We will continue to work together to make sure that the capabilities and economics associated with this technology allow us to meet the wide-ranging needs of our fleet.”
When operating on renewable natural gas, also known as RNG or biomethane, the X15N engine can significantly reduce life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of heavy-duty trucks. This can range from a 90% reduction to carbon neutral or even carbon negative, depending on the bio-source and waste feedstock used to produce the fuel.
The shift to natural gas, although not as complicated as the shift to electric trucks, requires planning, as renewable natural gas fuel isn’t yet widely available. To combat this, trucking companies testing these engines, such as Werner Enterprises and Knight Transportation, have partnered with fuel providers for their renewable natural gas needs. Trillium, a Love’s company, supplies RNG to Werner Enterprises, and Clean Energy supplies fuel to Knight Transportation.
Freightliner joins another truck manufacturer, Paccar, in offering the natural gas engine in its trucks, signaling a shift to alternative fuel sources in the industry.
This story originally appeared on FleetOwner.com.