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Volvo 13-liter liquefied-natural-gas engine announced for North America

Mon, 21 May 2012

It comes as no surprise that, with rising fuel costs, companies are continuing their efforts to increase efficiency. Volvo Trucks, for its part, plans to launch a 13-liter liquefied-natural-gas engine for North America in 2014 and is set to develop a new form natural-gas fuel called DME, or dimethyl ether.

Volvo looks to add the liquefied-natural-gas option to complement its compressed-natural-gas (CNG) offerings.

The automaker claims that the new engine will increase efficiency with less carbon emissions. According to Volvo, the new engine won't be giving up any power or torque with its new efficiency.

Volvo has conducted road tests with DME-powered trucks and said it sees the fuel as a potential alternative in North America given the large natural-gas reserves available.

“We demonstrated in 2007 our ability to run vehicles on seven different fuels, and we continue to refine our work with a variety [of] alternative fuels and drivelines,” said Ron Huibers, president of Volvo Trucks North American sales and marketing. “Our comprehensive . . . strategy—including CNG, LNG and potentially DME—means we'll have a complete range of natural-gas solutions as the infrastructure develops.”

By David Arnouts