BOISE, Idaho, November 9, 2007 BMC West is always seeking ways to deliver products more efficiently while conserving fuel. So, the company recently jumped at the opportunity to become one of the first fleets in North America to operate Kenworth™s new medium duty hybrid-electric trucks.
It was an easy decision to partner with Kenworth on this vehicle, said Brian Gable, Boise, Idaho-based fleet manager for BMC West, which has provided homebuilders and do-it-yourselfers with lumber and building supplies since 1987. With over a thousand trucks in our fleet, Kenworth™s medium duty hybrid design has the potential to conserve a lot of fuel, and save resources and costs, which helps our company, customers and communities. It™s just one more way we can be smarter about how we do the job, and help everyone along the way. Plus, it reduces our carbon footprint, which is valuable to our green building partners.
Thus far, the Kenworth medium duty hybrid truck is proving effective as it serves the greater Seattle area from BMC West™s operation in Issaquah, Wash. Gable already reports a significant improvement in fuel economy compared to a similarly spec™d Kenworth T300, and the fuel savings could go even higher with more in-city routes and less freeway time.
There is a lot of potential at BMC West for hybrid technology as more and more of our delivery routes are through suburban areas with a lot of stop-and-go activity, said Gable. That™s where the Kenworth medium duty hybrid really shines.
The Kenworth Class 7 hybrid can carry a payload of up to 16,000 pounds, features a PACCAR PX-6 240 hp engine, integral transmission-mounted motor/generator, frame-mounted 340-volt battery, and dedicated power management system. Above 30 mph, the Kenworth hybrid operates like a standard diesel vehicle with all power coming from the engine during steady driving conditions. Below 30 mph, it uses a combination of diesel and electricity with the system automatically switching between the two modes of operation. Electricity generated through regenerative braking is stored and used for acceleration, assisting the diesel engine.
In addition to the medium duty hybrid, Kenworth™s dedication to the green fleet also includes the Kenworth Clean Power no-idle system, EPA SmartWay program, and Kenworth T800 liquefied natural gas (LNG) trucks.
BMC West purchases its Kenworth trucks through Trebar Kenworth Sales in Boise and has had a working relationship with the dealership since 2000. We™ve been choosing Kenworth trucks T800s and T300s due to their quality and durability, said Gable. Our local deliveries mean driving highway, city street, and onto gravel and dirt on nearly every run. We need versatile, well-built trucks. And, because of the long life cycles on our equipment, quality and durability help reduce our long-term costs through s