Seeing an opportunity to improve market share, Ford Motor Co. will be offering its Triton V10 gasoline engine in its Class 6-7 medium-duty chassis cab trucks beginning with the 2012 model year The engine is currently offered in the company’s F450 and F550 Super Duty chassis cabs as well as in the F53 stripped chassis for motorhomes.
“If you look at what’s happening with diesel engines, the added emissions challenges, there is an opportunity,” Todd Kaufman, F-Series chassis cab marketing manager told FleetOwner. “Every city has a five-yard dump truck running on diesel when gas can do the job.”
Kaufman said that when General Motors pulled out of the medium-duty marketplace, the only other gasoline option for trucks in Class 6-7 left with it. Ford believes that with no other competitor offering a gas-option and the expensive new emissions-control technology needed to meet EPA 2010 regulations with diesel engines, gives the OEM an opportunity to grow sales.
According to Kaufman, the 6.8L V10 mated with a heavy-duty six-speed Ford Torqshift automatic transmission will produce 457 lbs.-ft. of torque at 3,250 rpm and 363 horsepower at 4,750 rpm. The engine is a three-valve, single-overhead camshaft engine. The transmission is identical to the one that powers the 2011 Super Duty, producing 735 lbs.-ft. of torque from a 6.7L PowerStroke V8 turbocharged diesel.
“That transmission is very capable” of providing the power necessary in the gas versions, Kaufman said. The addition of the gas option means Ford is the only manufacturer to offer a gas option for all classes from 1 through 7, he said.
“No other manufacturer offers this wide of a range of options and solutions for truck customers,” said Len Deluca, director, commercial truck sales and marketing. “The availability of a gas engine in this medium-duty segment will be welcome news to many businesses and municipalities.”
For added strength, the transmission employs a unique powder-metal carrier in the compound planetary gearset. The carrier consists of four pressed powder-metal components sinter-brazed together to form a rigid, power-dense structure. The sinter-brazed gearset enables more torque capacity and greater engine speed capability.
Also included are Live Drive PTO (power takeoff) and double overdrive gears, which aid highway fuel economy. The Live Drive PTO features an output linked directly to the engine crankshaft providing “live” PTO operation any time the engine is running, regardless of vehicle speed.
Kaufman said that users of small dump trucks, arborists, landscapers and delivery fleets are among the target audience. In reality, anyone who is currently using a diesel-powered medium-duty truck could benefit from the Ford gas option, he said.
The Triton V10 features three valves per cylinder – two intake and one exhaust – allowing the engine to “breathe almost as well as high-performance four-valve designs, but without the additional weight and complexity,” Ford said. There will also be an alternative fuels package for compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) opration.
“Having alternative fuel options is extremely important as fleets and municipalities seek greener options,” Deluca said. “Overall lower emissions of greenhouse gases compared to gasoline, and lower fuel/operating costs for their fleet are very appealing.”