CHICAGO. Navistar presented the City of Chicago with its first hybrid vocational truck—an International DuraStar model—here at the Work Truck Show and 45th annual convention of the National Truck Equipment Assn.

Navistar officially presented the keys to the 33,000-lb GVWR diesel-electric work truck to Howard Henneman, the City of Chicago's Commissioner of Fleet Management. “We are pleased to be the first municipality in the region to utilize this new technology,” said Henneman. We expect that this technology will be an important part of our environmental efforts moving forward.”

“We’re excited to partner with the City of Chicago in its ongoing efforts to become the most environmentally friendly city in the world,” said Steve Guillaume, Navistar general manager, vocational trucks. “Chicago recognizes the importance of a green truck fleet and the International DuraStar Hybrid will play a critical role in saving fuel and reducing emissions.”

According to Guillaume, the International DuraStar Hybrid delivers dramatic fuel savings of more than 60% in utility-type applications, when the engine often can be shut off and electric power will operate the vehicle. Beyond the fuel savings potential, the DuraStar Hybrid produces zero emissions when auxiliary equipment (like an overhead utility bucket) is run solely on the truck’s battery power, he noted.

The International DuraStar Hybrid uses a mild parallel-type, diesel-electric hybrid architecture, developed by Eaton Corp., which leads to less diesel fuel use and fewer emissions. The hybrid-electric system’s regenerative braking recovers energy normally lost during braking, stores that energy in batteries and adds power back into the driveline during starts and acceleration.

This capability makes the truck more efficient in standard driving, particularly in city and stop-and-go operation, according to Navistar. When the truck reaches a work site, the hybrid system can power booms, aerial devices and other tools for up to 90 minutes without the engine running, significantly reducing noise, emissions and fuel costs, the OEM noted.