Equipment Roundup: Cat, Ditch Witch visit White House; Hood scoop key on 2017 Chevy HD trucks; Volvo LX1 50% less fuel burn ; Ram unveils new trucks; House ELD delay

Updated Jul 26, 2017
2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 3500 John Deere 15
A 2017 Chevy Silverado 3500 with a John Deere 244K wheel loader in two, sits in front of a 2500 hauling a Deere 324E skid steer. All photos by Jessica Walker, courtesy of Chevrolet.

Hood scoop key piece in Chevy’s creation of its most powerful HD pickups yet

Chevy’s 2017 Silverado 2500 and 3500 pickups aren’t just special to the automaker because they’re new. Thanks to the 6.6-liter Duramax diesel at the heart of these heavy duty pickups, Chevy says these are the most powerful vehicles it has ever produced.

Introduced last October, the 6.6L Duramax V8 got a complete redesign intended to generate more torque at lower rpms. The result is a jaw-dropping 445 horsepower at 2,850 rpm and 910 lb.-ft. of torque at 1,600 rpm. The torque figure represents a 19-percent improvement over the previous generation engine.

Though Chevy introduced the new engine with a patriotic stunt, the brand’s marketing department is still working to illustrate to customers what a beast this engine is. And so, the company partnered with John Deere and flew a bunch of automotive and heavy equipment journalists to Moline, Illinois, to drive the new SIlverado HDs and do what these trucks are engineered to do: tow heavy things.

Read the full story here.


House bill would delay ELD compliance two years

A bill has been filed in the U.S. House to delay the compliance date of the federal government’s electronic logging device two years, to December 2019.

If enacted, carriers would have two additional years to adopt electronic logging devices.

Texas Republican Rep. Brian Babin filed the bill, dubbed the ELD Extension Act of 2017. Babin’s introduction of the bill came a day after a House panel recommended that the U.S. DOT study whether a “full or targeted delay” of the mandate is needed. Both developments signal that efforts to engage Congress on the issue have gained traction.

Read the full story here.


Cat, Ditch Witch machines visit White House as Trump promises ‘Made in America’ revival

Caterpillar and Ditch Witch kicked off a special week at the White House focusing on American manufacturing with two of the largest examples of “Made in America” goods the country has to offer.

On Monday, the Trump administration held a “Made in America product showcase,” inviting one manufacturer from each of the 50 states to show off their wares. The White House says the showcase was meant to  honor “the incredible workers and companies who make ‘Made in America’ the world standard for quality and craftsmanship,” noting that “for too long our government has forgotten the American workers.”

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A Cat 966M wheel loader and a Ditch Witch JT20 horizontal directional drill were displayed alongside each other on the South Lawn of the White House. Also representing the heavy equipment industry at the event was Alabama’s Altec.

Read the full story here.


Volvo’s LX1 hybrid loader prototype achieves a 50% fuel efficiency gain over L150

After six months of testing at two Waste Management facilities in California, Volvo Construction Equipment says its electric hybrid LX1 prototype loader achieved up to 50 percent fuel efficiency improvement over a comparison machine, well exceeding the 35 percent goal it set for the project.

The LX1, unveiled at the Volvo CE’s Xploration Forum last fall, underwent head-to-head testing with a conventional Volvo L150 loader powered by a 13-liter engine. In comparison, the LX1 uses a significantly smaller 3.6-liter diesel and is designed as a “series hybrid” machine – meaning in part that the engine drives the electric motors mounted at the wheels instead of directly driving the wheels.

During the Xploration Forum, Scott Young, Volvo CE’s electromobility director, explained how the LX1 works: “As opposed to mechanical or hydraulic systems, with electrification we can decouple and move everything around and change the way the machine actually runs. And because subsystems are not linked, they can now be optimized individually, leading to greater efficiency.”

Read the full story here.


Ram unveils new Big Horn Black, Sport HD packages for 2018

For its pickups’ 2018 model year, Ram will introduce new Big Horn and Lone Star Black packages as well as a new Sport version.

Big Horn and Lone Star Black packages will be available for 2018 Ram 1500 trucks. Lone Star Black will be available in Texas only.

The new Big Horn Black is offered exclusively in black, with all-black exterior features including a black grille, black badging, black wheels and black headlamp bezels.

Read the full story here.