The first units of Stralis Natural Power Euro VI, the new heavy range of natural gas-powered vehicles launched by Iveco, have already been deployed to European customers. Iveco has long embraced this challenge, especially for transport missions in sectors such as the distribution, short and medium-long range logistics and municipal services, such as waste collection and transportation.
Through this latest development, Iveco confirms its leadership in the alternative fuel technology sector, by offering a complete range of light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles as well as buses powered by natural gas. A total of over 12,000 units have been sold to date, 2,000 of which were sold in 2013.
The extensive product range for the new Stralis Natural Power Euro VI with 2 and 3-axle rigids and 2-axle tractors satisfies the numerous needs of the Iveco customer. The vehicles, manufactured on the same assembly line as Diesel models at the Iveco plant in Madrid, are fitted with a Cursor 8 Natural Power engine, ranging from 270 to 330 hp. The engine is coupled to a 16-gear manual ZF transmission or 6-speed Allison automatic transmission with hydraulic torque converter. CNG models have an overall tank capacity ranging between 400 to 1,300 litres with layouts that can be tailored to suit customer needs.
Along with the CNG version, for the medium and long range missions the Stralis Natural Power is available also with LNG for a cruising range of 750 km. The tractor AT440S33T/P LNG, in standard configuration, is equipped with 4 x 70-litre CNG tanks and a 525-litre LNG cryogenic tank. Natural gas is stored in its liquid state at -130°C and at 9-bar pressure, which is then converted into a gaseous state before being injected into the engine.
Iveco is the only European manufacturer to have confirmed its CNG technology strategy in the evolution from Euro V to Euro VI: natural gas FPT Industrial engines are characterised by stoichiometric combustion, or in other words a chemically balanced air-fuel ratio; 100% fuelled by natural gas; Otto cycle with spark plugs that ignite the air-fuel mixture injected by a rail, with two injectors per cylinder. Exhaust gas is treated by a standard passive three-way catalyst that does not require the use of any additives.
This vehicle counts numerous advantages, both in terms of environmental sustainability as well as customer profitability. With regards to emissions, Euro VI natural gas engines are much “greener” than their Euro VI Diesel counterpart. Natural gas is an absolute clean fuel thanks to its particulate emissions (-95% in comparison to Diesel) and NOx (-35%) being slashed to the bare minimum. Furthermore, these vehicles make it possible to reduce vehicle CO2 emissions from 10% up to 100% if bio-methane is used. Lastly, Iveco proposes a more silent vehicle with an average decrease of 5 Decibels in comparison to Diesel models, making it perfect for waste collection and night-time distribution.
In terms of cost efficiency, overall TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) savings stand at up to 10%. Lower prices for natural gas in comparison to Diesel means higher profitability, translating into up to 40% in fuel expense reductions, the most important aspect relating to TCO.