Cat next week: we’ll be there

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The 966K XE makes its Intermat splash.The 966K XE makes its Intermat splash.

Expect lots of great info will coming out of Peoria next week, with Caterpillar scheduling a jam-packed press event. Highlights include a sneak peek at Cat’s new downtown visitor center (stay posted for videos and tweets from the event from @EWeditor), an update on Cat’s Tier 4 engine strategy and the North American debut of the 966K XE wheel loader.

Cat unveiled the 966K XE concept at the Intermat trade show in Paris this spring. According to Cat, the model uses an integrated continuously variable transmission system to deliver a 25 percent increase in fuel efficiency. A hydraulic variator takes the place of the torque converter for reduced heat generation under severe rimpull load. When the machine is working under heavy loads, Cat says the  transmission consumes roughly half the energy compared to a conventional transmission.

The mechanical path drives one element in the planetary transmission, while the hydraulic path drives another. The two together essentially provide the output of the planetary. Since the hydraulic can be variably controlled, the output is variably controlled. For more info, check out the video below. 

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