LISLE, Ill. — Navistar, Inc. Feb. 1 launched a comprehensive natural gas strategy, including integrated natural gas product offerings and a strategic partnership with Clean Energy Fuels Corp. that it said will provide customers with a “sustainable, commercially viable solution for adding natural gas powered trucks to their fleets.”
"Natural gas has clearly emerged as the most realistic alternative fuel option for the trucking industry," said Dan Ustian, Navistar chairman, president and CEO. "Together, Navistar and Clean Energy have come up with a breakthrough program that offers customers a quicker payback on their investment plus added fuel costs savings from day one of operation. When combined with Navistar's industry-leading dealer network and Clean Energy's unmatched fuel distribution system, customers can be confident that bringing natural gas vehicles into their fleets makes good business sense."
"We believe the deployment of new, innovative, heavy-duty natural gas engines by world-class original equipment truck manufacturers like Navistar is accelerating the transition to natural gas fuel as a game-changer for heavy-duty trucking," said Andrew J. Littlefair, Clean Energy President and CEO. "We welcome the opportunity to work with Navistar to bring the benefits of clean, cost-effective, domestically abundant natural gas fuel to the company's trucking customer base."
Navistar officials said that by leveraging the company's existing integrated vehicle and powertrain platforms, “Navistar will offer the broadest range of Class 6 through Class 8 CNG-/LNG-powered vehicles in the category,” adding that Clean Energy will provide a comprehensive CNG/LNG fueling solution “to meet customer demands and aid in bringing new customers into the natural gas market.”
Navistar and Clean Energy will work with the company's commercial truck dealers and fleet customers on the deployment of natural gas powered trucks and a natural gas distribution support system.
“Together, the companies will demonstrate how a natural gas integrated vehicle offering with the right distribution and fueling solution can be integrated into a fleet's operations to reduce costs and drive efficiencies.” They said the partnership will help accelerate the adoption of natural gas technologies by making it easier for customers to invest in the new technology, including incentives aimed at neutralizing the cost difference for the diesel fuel equivalent for those who purchase at least 1,000 diesel gallon equivalents of natural gas fuel each month.
Clean Energy recently unveiled a route plan for the first phase of 150 new liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling stations for America's Natural Gas Highway (ANGH). The company has identified 98 locations and anticipates having 70 stations open by the end of 2012 in 33 states.
Many of the fueling stations will be co-located at Pilot-Flying J Travel Centers through an exclusive agreement with Pilot to build, own and operate natural gas fueling facilities at agreed-upon travel centers. Pilot-Flying J is the nation's largest truck-stop operator with more than 550 retail properties in 47 states.
"The deployment of new, innovative, heavy-duty natural gas engines by world-class original equipment truck manufacturers like Navistar is accelerating the transition to natural gas fuel as a game-changer for heavy-duty trucking. We welcome the opportunity to work with Navistar to bring the benefits of clean, cost-effective, domestically-abundant natural gas fuel to its trucking customers," said James Harger, chief marketing officer of Clean Energy.
Navistar will use its existing commercial truck and engine platforms to offer a portfolio of integrated products for the natural gas market. The company will continue to offer International DuraStar and WorkStar vocational trucks with its natural gas powered MaxxForce DT, developed in conjunction with Emissions Solutions Incorporated (ESI) of McKinney.
To meet the growing demands of the regional haul and class 7/8 vocational market Navistar will offer the Cummins-Westport ISL-G, in the International TranStar and WorkStar. Additionally, Navistar will enter into a phase II developmental agreement with Clean Air Power Ltd. on the International ProStar, WorkStar and PayStar vocational trucks, powered by a diesel pilot injection LNG MaxxForce 13-liter engine.
"One of the major obstacles in customer transition to natural gas has been the lack of a gas powered range of engines designed to meet the multiple requirements without compromise," said Jim Hebe, Navistar senior vice president, North America Sales Operations. "Navistar — with its extended range of truck engines — is uniquely able to leverage engine platforms into the industry's broadest range of natural gas trucks. When the MaxxForce 13L is introduced in mid-2013, customers will have a capable range of natural engines and trucks, from 7.6 liter to 13 liter with horsepower ranging from 200 to 450."
Navistar International Corporation is a holding company whose subsidiaries and affiliates produce International brand commercial and military trucks, MaxxForce brand diesel engines, IC Bus brand school and commercial buses, Monaco RV brands of recreational vehicles, and Workhorse brand chassis for motor homes and step vans. The company also provides truck and diesel engine service parts. Another affiliate offers financing services.
Clean Energy is the largest provider of natural gas fuel for transportation in North America and a global leader in the expanding natural gas vehicle market. It has operations in CNG and LNG vehicle fueling, construction and operation of CNG and LNG fueling stations, biomethane production, vehicle conversion and compressor technology. Today, Clean Energy fuels more than 25,000 vehicles at 273 strategic locations across the United States and Canada with a broad customer base in the refuse, transit, trucking, shuttle, taxi, airport and municipal fleet markets.
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