Cummins promotes more fuel-efficient engine

December 2020/January 2021

Tom Berg


Cummins Inc. says its 2021-model heavy-truck diesels will deliver greater fuel economy and offer longer oil-drain intervals than current engines. In a virtual news conference on Oct. 13, executives also said mechanical improvements make the diesels quieter at idle and generally more efficient to own and operate.

The economy improvements pertain to the builders’ X15 Efficiency engines, which are already in production and are getting up to 3.5% better fuel economy than previous engines, said Kris Ptasznik, manager for heavy-duty on-highway products. Those with so-called EX ratings can gain an additional 1.5% economy. EX engines are paired with Eaton Endurant automated manual transmissions, which shift themselves.

Some fleet operators using EX engine-transmission components are reporting mile-per-gallon fuel economy figures in the 8s, 9s and 10s, said RaNae Isaak, powertrain and cost-of-ownership consultancy leader. Those are achieved when drivers use Smart Coast and other features, which let the engine turn in maximum efficiency.

Cummins currently provides an oil-drain interval of up to 75,000 miles for operators achieving 7 mpg or more with the X12 and X15 Efficiency engines. In 2021, customers averaging between 5 and 7 mpg will see their drain intervals with X15 Performance series engine extended by 10,000 miles. New extended-range oil filters allow them to go as long as the oil, so oil and filters can be changed at the same time.

Ptasznik said Cummins offers an oil analysis service for customers wanting to establish long but safe intervals.

The 2021 X15 Performance series, which are popular with owner-operators, will offer some powertrain features that were previously unavailable above 500 horsepower, Ptasznik said. Features like Smart Coast, Predictive Cruise Control and Predictive Road Speed Governor will be available for customers with automated manual powertrains in 2021. Many of the powertrain-operating features also work with manual transmissions. Customers can visit the new cloud-based PowerSpec tool via for help with vehicle spec’ing, feature descriptions and more. LL

TA Fleetguard