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Clean diesel trucks now make up 30% of U.S. commercial vehicles


Washington, DC — Introduction of more advanced clean diesel truck engines and emissions control systems into the nation’s trucking fleet over the last five years is now at a 30 per cent level and has yielded significant emission reductions and substantial fuel savings, according to new research commissioned by the Diesel Technology Forum.

“Almost 3 million heavy-duty diesel commercial vehicles introduced in the U.S. from 2011 through 2016 are now on the road powered by the latest generation clean diesel engines, and these trucks have delivered important benefits in the form of cleaner air, fewer carbon dioxide emissions and dramatic fuel savings,” said Allen Schaeffer, Executive Director of the Diesel Technology Forum. “Over a five-year period, the newest generation commercial vehicles have saved 4.2 billion gallons of diesel fuel, and reduced 43 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2), 21 million tonnes of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and 1.2 million tonnes of particulate matter.

“Because diesel overwhelmingly dominates the heavy-duty truck sector and is also the number one power source for medium-duty vehicles, the transition to newer generations of clean diesel technology (2011 and later MY) is significant. The 30 per cent national average is up from just 25.7 per cent last year.  The research also estimated that significant further benefits would accrue to communities across the country if more of these newer generation clean diesel trucks enter into service.

“Achieving these substantial emissions reductions and efficiency advancements was in part the result of collaboration of the nation’s leading truck and engine manufacturers working with the Department of Energy and 21st Century Truck Partnership’s “SuperTruck” program, said Schaeffer.  “While the intent of this valuable program is to push the margins of research engineering efficiency, it is clear that demand is leading many of these strategies to be integrated into the commercial truck fleet and contributing to real-world emissions reductions and fuel savings.

“In addition to these substantial societal benefits, a Class 8 tractor-trailer sized vehicle powered by the latest generation clean diesel engine will save the owner 960 gallons of fuel each year, relative to the previous generation of technology.  When these benefits are compounded over the entire population of the clean diesel fleet, the 4.2 billion gallons of fuel saved between 2011 and 2016 is equivalent to almost 40 per cent of the strategic petroleum reserve,” said Schaeffer.