Stotesbury Transfer finds
new T800 makes the grade
—in more ways than one
Aug 25, 2010 11:00 AM
Rob Pettigrew may be pulling a turnpike double configuration load of 90,000 pounds of raw milk with a new Kenworth T800 equipped with an engine that’s new to the North American market—but he doesn’t miss his old truck.
“It’s amazing how quiet the T800 with the Paccar MX engine is compared to other trucks I’ve driven,” said Pettigrew. He has driven for more than two decades, including the past 10 years for Stotesbury Transfer, a specialized bulk liquid foods and milk carrier based in Kitchener, Ontario. Stotesbury is one of the first Canadian companies to operate the 12.9-liter Paccar MX engine.
Pettigrew admits that when he first heard he was getting a new truck with a 12.9-liter, 485-hp engine new to the North American trucking industry, he wasn’t necessarily enthusiastic. But experience driving his 18-speed T800 with the new Paccar MX engine has completely changed that perception.
“When I get it up to speed on the highway between Kitchener and Toronto, I don’t have to touch the gear again until I get close to Toronto—not even when I am going up two-mile-long Keele Street Hill with its 4% grade,” he said.
The tanker truck and trailer combination Pettigrew drives has a combined weight limit of about 139,000 pounds. “The Paccar MX engine provides me all the torque and pull (1,650 lb-ft) I need to get me to Toronto,” Pettigrew said. He enjoys telling the story of how, in a friendly challenge with a skeptical driver of a competing milk hauler, the MX engine got Pettigrew up the Keele Street Hill first even though the other truck was pulling a lighter load.
“I’ve never heard him say another word about my Paccar MX engine,” he said with a grin.
While the MX engine may have silenced the driver of one of its competitors, Stotesbury owners Bryan and Bruce Stotesbury are far from mum about the improved fuel economy from the two T800s equipped with MX engines.
Bruce said he estimates the MX engines net a 3% to 5% improvement in fuel economy, even though his over-the-road fleet tractors pull quad-axle trailers with combination weights of 128,000 pounds or more. These tractors haul various bulk liquid foods.
“We’re getting about a two-tenths mpg improvement in fuel economy with the Paccar MX engine in our pick-up and delivery milk tanker and a two-tenths to four-tenths mpg improvement in our comparably spec’d over-the-road fleet truck,” said Bruce. “We expect those numbers to increase over time as we continue to break in the engines. I believe our fuel economy would be even better if we were hauling in standard configurations.”
The company operates a fleet of 23 Class 8 tractors and tanker trucks, including eight units dedicated to picking up fresh milk and 15 power units employed in its over-the-road fleet. The company’s over-the-road fleet includes tractors equipped with 62-inch and 72-inch AeroCab sleepers, and Kenworth Extended Day Cabs. The OTR trucks generally haul other foodgrade products such as orange juice, bulk confectionary chocolate, and vegetable oils for food processors in North America. The sleeper–equipped trucks usually travel across the border into the United States and across the Eastern Seaboard, Midwest, and partly into the Southeast.
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