That’s in large part because across the industry “going green” has become fashionable for all kinds of companies that operate light- and medium-duty trucks, and because vehicle manufacturers are seeing their efforts to develop hybrid powertrains come to fruition.
If all of that news hasn’t convinced you that hybrids are a hot topic these days, the recent Hybrid Truck & Alternative Fuels Ride-and-Drive sponsored by EATON Hybrid Power Systems during The Work Truck Show 2008 might make you a believer. During the event, show attendees had the opportunity to test drive 14 new hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles on the streets of Atlanta, Ga.
Included in the alternative fuel vehicle lineup were a direct-injection liquid propane fuel system, a battery electric SUV, a series hydraulic hybrid-powered truck, a battery electric utility service truck, a light-duty battery electric truck with a 150-mile range, a battery electric hybrid package delivery van, a Class 6 through 7 battery electric hybrid truck and a plug-in hybrid electric utility vehicle. Participating companies in the event included:
• American Alternative Fuels
• Chelsea Products Div. of Parker
• CleanFUEL USA
• DUECO Inc.
• EATON Hybrid Power Systems
• Freightliner Custom Chassis
• Freightliner Trucks
• General Motors Fleet and Commercial Operations
• International Truck and Engine Corp.
• Kenworth Truck Co.
• Modec Electric Vehicles
• Peterbilt Motors Co.
The Work Truck Show 2008’s hybrid and alternative fuels coverage also included an all-day special session called the Hybrid Truck & Alternative Fuels Summit sponsored by International Truck and Engine Corp. The show, held in conjunction with the 44th Annual National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA) Convention at the Georgia World Congress Center, is quickly becoming the place to be for manufacturers, distributors and dealers that produce the trucks, equipment and components critical to meeting the needs of vocational fleet managers, truck buyers and maintenance personnel.
NTEA’s claim that The Work Truck Show is “North America’s largest work truck event” was backed this year by a record 534 exhibitors, including 81 companies that were exhibiting for the first time. The sold-out show floor filled 203,400 sq. ft. of space where fleet representatives could check out the latest full-size work trucks and equipment, vehicle components and systems, and services offered by suppliers, including 75 new product introductions.
“If you build, upfit, use or repair vocational trucks and trailers in any industry, The Work Truck Show is a must-attend event,” said Dennis Jones, NTEA convention chairman and vice president of sales and marketing for Auto Truck Group in Roanoke, Ind. “At The Work Truck Show, you can see and compare the latest product and technology innovations from more than 500 companies all under one roof.”
Established in 1964, NTEA supports the work truck and trailer industry, representing more than 1,750 companies that manufacture, distribute, install, sell and repair commercial trucks, truck bodies, truck equipment, trailers and accessories. Buyers of work trucks and the major commercial truck chassis manufacturers also belong to the association where they can access in-depth technical information, and a variety of educational and member programs and services. For more information about NTEA or The Work Truck Show, call 800-441-NTEA (6832), or visit www.ntea.com.