Swede suc­cess on power

Volvo’s back on top of the per­for­mance chart, but with great econ­omy, writesGRAHAMSMITH

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Big Wheels -

VOLVO has re­leased a 522kW ver­sion of its flag­ship FH16, and re­claimed the brag­ging rights to the world’s most pow­er­ful truck. The Swedish truck­maker last reigned over the truck world in 2007 when its 492kW FH16 was the most pow­er­ful truck in pro­duc­tion.

MAN took over the man­tle that same year when it un­veiled its 507kW TGX 680.

The new Volvo FH16, re­leased in Europe last month, has a record 522kW and 3150Nm.

The im­pres­sive power has not come at the ex­pense of emis­sions or fuel econ­omy. It meets the tough Euro 5 lim­its (Aus­tralia’s emis­sion lim­its are the equiv­a­lent of Euro 4), and fuel con­sump­tion is the same as the ex­ist­ing en­gine.

Volvo Trucks pres­i­dent and CEO Ste­fan Ju­fors says the aim is to have the best per­for­mance and fuel econ­omy in the seg­ment.

‘‘With the new D16G en­gine, we have suc­ceeded in keep­ing fuel con­sump­tion the same as be­fore de­spite the power in­crease.’’ he says.

The 16-litre six-cylin­der en­gine comes in 403kW and 447kW ver­sions as well as the 522kW hero.

Max­i­mum power and max­i­mum torque span a wider rev range to make it more driver friendly.

Volvo uses Se­lec­tive Cat­alytic Re­duc­tion to cut emis­sions, with NOx down by 40 per cent.

There is a new, elec­tron­i­cally con­trolled 230kW ex­haust brake as stan­dard, and the op­tion of Volvo’s en­gine brake, which has a brak­ing ca­pac­ity of 425kW.

It also fea­tures an oil ther­mo­stat to help fuel econ­omy, and pre-in­jec­tion to make the en­gine qui­eter.

The 700-horse­power FH16 is aimed at the heav­i­est and most de­mand­ing trans­port op­er­a­tions, such as road trains that op­er­ate in the Out­back.

Volvo’s 660-horse­power FH16 has ac­quit­ted it­self well in road train and B-dou­ble work since it was shown at the Bris­bane Truck Show in 2007.

The 700-horse­power truck has per­formed well in field tri­als Volvo has done here, but the need for a larger con­verter for emis­sions re­duces the size of the fuel tanks the truck can carry and that re­duces its ap­peal for lo­cal op­er­a­tors.

Volvo na­tional sales man­ager James Mor­ris says the 700-horse­power FH16 was not part of the com­pany’s plans for Aus­tralia, but could be in­tro­duced about 2011.

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