Kenworth says it has begun producing trucks with an available engine advanced starting and battery charging system. 

The ultracapacitor-based Maxwell Engine Start Module (ESM) is a factory-installed option for new Kenworth T680s and T880s. The module provides dedicated power to start the truck and frees the truck’s standard batteries to focus on powering lights and accessories used by drivers.

The ESM is designed to start an engine in temperatures as low as minus 40 degrees to a high of 149 degrees, even when the batteries have low voltage. 

“The Engine Start Module has proven itself as a very capable solution for situations where starting reliability is critical,” said Kurt Swihart, Kenworth marketing director. KW dealers offer ESM for installation in existing trucks, too. 

Also now in production is Kenworth’s new, enhanced 1,800-watt inverter that provides the convenience of AC power in the sleeper.

“Inverters are popular, as they utilize AC power versus DC to help efficiently operate appliances, entertainment systems and other devices in the sleeper,” said Swihart. “That’s a benefit to drivers, plus the Kenworth inverter can operate more systems and devices with better performance in handling high-amp loads.”

The Kenworth inverter also charges a truck’s batteries when it’s plugged into an outlet at a truck stop, terminal or at home. During this time shore power also runs the accessories. In the sleeper, there is a control panel with on/off switching, plus a readout showing battery status, he said.

The inverter is mounted on the rear wall in the sleeper storage compartment. The new inverter is optional for the Kenworth Idle Management System with the T680 76-inch sleeper, and charges the starter and idle management system batteries when plugged into shore power.