Hybrid Hino helps
Hino is into hybrid production, writes GRAHAMSMITH
HINO is charging into the future with a new diesel-electric hybrid truck that appeared at last weekend’s Sydney Truck Show. Of all the potential solutions touted as answers to our fuel and pollution woes, the hybrid is the only one that’s available now. And it’s been proven in trials.
Hino first brought its hybrid technology to Australia last year when it sold a superseded truck as a toe-in-the-water exercise.
The company is now introducing a fullblown production model as part of its lightduty 300 Series range.
The Hybrid 714 has been in production in Japan for more than a year and features the latest hybrid technology helping both fuel consumption and exhaust emissions.
When used in an appropriate application, typically heavy traffic with lots of stop-start driving, Hino says the Hybrid 714 can cut fuel use 20 to 30 per cent compared with a similar truck powered by a conventional diesel engine, and that equates to a substantial cut in greenhouse gas emissions.
The new 300 Series Hybrid has the same mild-parallel, hybrid-drive system the previous trucks used, but with improvements.
At its heart lies a new synchronous permanent-magnet electric motor that is lighter and considerably more powerful. Whereas the old electric motor weighed 58kg and produced 23kW and 243Nm, the new one weighs 40.8kg and generates 36kW and 350Nm.
With 44 per cent more torque, which is on tap at 1000 revs, the acceleration of the 6500kg GVM truck is boosted substantially.
The electric motor helps the truck’s diesel engine under acceleration, recharges the batteries while cruising and helps with braking when the truck is slowing.
Regenerative braking saves the truck’s regular brakes, reducing pad wear and increasing their service life by as much as 50 per cent.
The electric motor is also called upon to start the truck’s diesel engine whenever needed, first up in the morning or when stuck in heavy traffic as part of an idle-stop function.
Shutting down the engine instead of letting it idle away, using fuel and polluting the atmosphere, is another way the Hybrid saves.
The changes add up to a cleaner truck, and Hino has also fitted an aid to help operators get the most out of the system.
The ECO lamp illuminates when the electric motor is helping the diesel engine, and the brighter it is the more the efficiency. The key for the driver is to make it burn at its brightest.
The 714 Hybrid also has a cleaner diesel engine. It’s still a 4.0-litre turbodiesel unit, but its output has been reduced from 110kW to 100kW, with 353Nm. It complies with the Japanese long-term exhaust emission limits, which are very close to the Euro 5 limits that are due as ADR 80/03 in 2011.
Compared to a regular Hino 300 truck, the Hybrid emits about 50 per cent less NOx and 70 per cent less particulate matter.
Though the Hino Hybrid offers a solution to the problems of rising fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions, it does come at a cost. The Hybrid carries a premium of $12,000 over a similar conventional diesel-powered truck.