Caterpillar will introduce and distribute a new air compressor to the on-highway market that's built to be cleaner, tougher and quieter. The Cat 270 air compressor has been available on Cat C13 engines in selected chassis since April 2006 and will be available on all Caterpillar engines in all chassis in 2007.

The Cat 270's use of two cylinders rather than one results in better balance and reduces vibration by as much as 75%, the company said. Noise is cut by up to two decibels.

“The on-board air compressor is one major source of chassis vibration,” said Mike Powers, product development manager for Caterpillar On-Highway Engines. “Our new Cat 270 air compressor is much smoother than today's typical compressor.”

A cast iron piston, fewer parts and hardware, a forged steel crakshaft and heavy-duty bearings increase reliability, according to Caterpillar.