Production Begins on John Deere's PowerTech E Engines

John Deere Power Systems (JDPS) has begun production of the Tier 3/Stage III A certified PowerTech E family of off-highway diesel engines. The PowerTech E lineup includes the 140 to 200 hp 6.8L, the 85 to 140 hp 4.5L, the 65 to 99 hp 3.0L, and the 60 to 80 hp 2.4L engines.

While the 6.8L and 4.5L engines have been in production since summer 2006, the 3.0L and 2.4L engines are set to follow in summer 2007, months in advance of the U.S. Environment Protection Agency (EPA) emissions regulations affecting engines below 75 kW. The EPA certified the PowerTech E 6.8L and 4.5L in 2006.

“Now that we have certified not only our PowerTech Plus engines but also two of our PowerTech E 6.8L and 4.5L engines, we're well prepared to offer a wide variety of environmentally friendly engine options for John Deere and OEM applications that don't compromise on performance,” said Mike Weinert, director of engine engineering for JDPS, in Waterloo, Iowa.

The PowerTech E engines feature a fixed geometry turbocharger, full-authority electronic controls, and a high-pressure common-rail fuel system (6.8L and 4.5L) or an electronic unit pump fuel system (3.0L and 2.4L). The PowerTech E line also exhibits performance standards similar to those of the more complex PowerTech Plus engines. Some engines from the PowerTech E lines have already demonstrated Interim Tier 4 and Stage III A capabilities, and will be in compliance before those levels take effect.

Although some operators worried about reduced performance because of the higher emissions standards, JDPS believes that the standards caused no ill-effects to the PowerTech E line. “Many end-users expect that engine performance has been negatively impacted as the engines were required to meet Tier 3 emissions regulations, but with PowerTech E engines, that isn't the case,” said Doug Laudick, product manager for JDPS. “These engines continue to offer many end-user benefits and a competitive total installed cost that John Deere engines have always delivered.”

According to John Deere, the PowerTech E engines boast the same or higher peak torque, more low-speed torque, better transient-response time, and excellent fuel economy when compared to their Tier 2/Stage II counterparts. The PowerTech E line's full-authority electronic controls also enable them to offer improved cold-start performance, precise engine-speed control, torque-curve shaping and more. Electronic controls increase productivity, lower total installed costs and reduce ownership costs. In addition, initial results indicate that the PowerTech E engines are as fuel efficient as their Tier 2/Stage II counterparts and, in some cases, use less fuel than many competitors' Tier 3/Stage III A engines.

One of the key aspects of the PowerTech E lineup is the fact that it brings the benefits of electronics to engines that are less than 100 hp. With its Tier 2 lineup, electronic options for John Deere engines went down to 110 hp, but with Tier 3, John Deere customers can get electronically controlled engines down to 60 hp.

Laudick also noted that the PowerTech family of engines is the foundation John Deere will build on for future U.S. EPA and EU regulations. “Our Tier 3 engine platforms will be the basis for meeting Tier 4 emissions levels beginning in January 2008,” Laudick said. “We have already begun exploring a number of technologies, including additional in-cylinder and after treatment solutions that will be applied to the existing Tier 3 platforms.”