Paccar and Eaton Corp have entered into an agreement to jointly develop proprietary hybrid technology for heavy-duty commercial vehicles in North America. The new products will be introduced exclusively in Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks in the North American market, targeted for initial production by the end of 2009.
Eaton's heavy-duty hybrid electric power system will be built using an automated manual transmission with a parallel-type “direct” hybrid system, incorporating an electric motor/generator between the output of an automated clutch and the input to a Fuller UltraShift transmission. One feature of this system will be its ability to recover energy normally lost during braking and store the energy in batteries. When electric torque is blended with engine torque, this stored energy is used to improve vehicle performance, operate the engine in a more fuel-efficient range for a given speed, or operate with electric power only.