Kenworth and Dana announced at CES 2020 that the truck maker and the component builder will collaborate on electric powertrain development for medium-duty Kenworth battery-electric vehicles. In addition, the OEM showed off its Level 4 Autonomous Kenworth T680 tractor at the event.
The zero-emissions Kenworth K270E cabover, which was exhibited at CES, is equipped with a Dana-designed e-Powertrain system that is fully integrated and upfitted to the Kenworth chassis. Configured as a direct drive system, the vehicle has a Spicer Electrified e-propulsion system and a standard Dana drive axle and driveshaft. Dana also supplies an e-power system, which generates, stores, and manages the energy for the vehicle and consists of electrified auxiliary systems, an on-board charger, and two battery packs. Dana-developed software and controls enable the diagnostics and telemetry of the complete system.
“This is an important next step in our evolution of an electric powertrain," said Kevin Baney, Kenworth general manager and Paccar vice president. "Dana is an industry leader in electrified modules and systems supported by in-house vehicle integration expertise. Kenworth plans to produce up to 100 medium-duty cabover electric trucks in 2020." .
The electric powertrain will be available with range options from 100 to 200 miles. The high-energy density battery packs can be recharged in about an hour using the vehicle’s DC fast-charging system, making both the Class 6 Kenworth K270E and Class 7 K370E cabovers ideal for local pickup and delivery as well as short regional haul operations, according to Kenworth.
“As demand for clean, electric-powered vehicles continues to grow, we are pleased to collaborate with Kenworth by providing the design, integration, and upfit of the complete e-powertrain for the K270E electric truck,” said Mark Wallace, president of commercial vehicle drive technologies for Dana.
Level 4 Autonomous Kenworth T680
Kenworth exhibited a Level 4 Autonomous Kenworth T680 at CES, a proof-of-concept truck that was conceived and constructed at the Paccar Innovation Center. Leading experts in the field of high-definition mapping, localization, perception and path planning delivered an integrated autonomous solution working with the Paccar team, noted the OEM. The T680 is equipped with cameras, lidar sensors, and radar to sense the surrounding road environment and to feed fusion algorithms in the perception stack for object identification and tracking.
A global navigation system with an inertial measurement unit combined with a lidar "point cloud"on a high-definition map provides "centimeter accuracy localization." The autonomous vehicle software and feedback control logic for actuation are hosted on five computers that record up to 1TB of data per hour of driving.
“Kenworth and the Paccar Innovation Center in Silicon Valley are working closely together to explore and develop the latest advanced driver assistance systems and other new technologies that offer safety and efficiency benefits for truck fleets and drivers. The Level 4 Autonomous Kenworth T680 is a perfect platform to study this technology in real-world applications,” said Patrick Dean, Kenworth chief engineer.
Mechanical modifications to the Kenworth T680 include redundant steering torque overlay system, upgraded high capacity alternator, a high-fidelity electronically controlled air braking system, and the addition of rear seats in the sleeper structure for the autonomous engineering team.