This week has seen a major new launch from International, which is being hyped by this series of videos on YouTube. The International A26 13 litre engine is destined for the North American market, at the moment. We can expect to find out more when the International trucks promised at the Brisbane Truck Show in 2015 finally see the light of day in Australia, in the next couple of months.
The commentary on this series of videos, outlining the development of this new engine talks about the A26 being a fundamental change in the way to approach engine design. The designers then go on to explain….well, not a lot actually.
We do know it is to be sold on the US market as a 12.4 litre diesel engine with up to 475 hp available and 1750 ft lb of torque. It is claimed to be 700 lb (317 kg) lighter. Reading the small print reveals it is 700 lb lighter than ‘traditional 15 litre engines’. It is also said to be five per cent more fuel efficient.
We are told the new engine design, ‘Emphasises simplicity over complexity and favours proven components over experimental technology’. This would suggest they have retained many of the components from the previous engine. So, how new is it?
Well, we are told the A26 is, ‘A simplified modern engine born with tireless ideation in its creation’.
The new engine does feature a single variable geometry turbo. One would have thought a drive for simplicity would have tried to work with a waste gate turbo without the added complexity of the VGT.
We have researched the subject a bit online to also discover the engine features a new piston assembly, which ‘features a low friction coating for increased fuel economy, and larger piston pin and connecting rod for optimal load distribution and durability’.
There is a new cylinder head design which, according to the blurb, has ‘the perfect balance between weight, strength, cooling and breathing’. Plus, there is a new fuel injection system, what kind of new system it is we are not told.
The designers used a technique called ‘Gaussian statistical modelling’. Check it out on Wikipedia and you will be none the wiser.
Actually, this engine is based on the MAN D26 engine, which will be familiar to anyone who has had anything to do with any of the MAN TGX range we have here in Australia. This is also related to the engine, painted yellow and badged as a Caterpillar, which powers the 13 litres Cat Trucks range.
This launch is typical of many seen in the US where marketing-speak overwhelms the actual information which might be useful to the practical truck buyer and the workshop which will have to fix the thing.