First publishedon www.AggBusiness.com
Volvo has developed an innovative hybrid wheel loader prototype, which was on display at ConExpo, and demonstrates the results of company's ongoing alternative power research.
The diesel-electric hybrid drive system has been fitted to one of its proven L220F wheel loaders as a rolling test machine to demonstrate the benefits of this technology in terms of fuel savings and reduced exhaust emissions.
This is the first prototype in Volvo's ongoing development programme and initial tests it can deliver substantial cuts in exhaust emissions and fuel consumption. According to Volvo, the hybrid drive system offers considerable potential in terms of environmental and economic benefits for the customer. Previous statements from Volvo about its hybrid developments have suggested that they may cut fuel consumption by up to 50%.
No details about when the wheeled loader may go into production have been announced recently, but the company said during last year's Bauma exhibition in Munich, Germany that, subject to successful completion of the field testing phase, the machine could be available from 2009. No information about the price difference between a conventionally powered diesel loader and the hybrid alternative is currently available.
Also on Volvo's stand at ConExpo was the Centaur - a concept aimed at the articulated truck market in the year 2020.