CleanFuel USA, a supplier of alternative fuel infrastructure and liquid propane engine systems, announced a partnership with Capacity of Texas to develop and certify the country's first terminal trucks using its liquid propane injection engine on a General Motors 8-liter platform.
The truck is projected to hit the market in 2012.

The new line of Capacity propane-powered off-road trucks is targeted to meet the demand for alternative-fueled vehicles in port communities that are challenged to comply with stricter emissions rules. This is a particularly vital issue for ports operating in counties that are designated as "non-attainment" or "maintenance" areas under the National Ambient Air Quality Standards, which the EPA uses to enforce emissions reductions.

The duty cycles of a typical terminal truck are relatively severe. The trucks are rarely non-operational and move multiple trailers of freight at one time. To maximize torque, the vehicles are geared low, achieving speeds of 25-40 mph. The large loads the vehicles are required to tow result in high fuel consumption; double that of a comparable on-highway vehicle. The company says a key benefit for fleets considering a switch to propane is that CleanFuel's 8-liter LPI engine, 33,000 pounds GVWR, offers the same horsepower, torque and performance as a gasoline-powered vehicle.

The Propane Education and Research Council approved a $2.4 million grant to support the development of the trucks. Allison Transmission, CleanFual, Capacity, Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation, GM and Powertrain Integration are all project stakeholders.