With the push toward progressive decarbonszation and the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, new technologies are projecting themselves ahead of us. Some of these will play an increasingly important role in the future of the off-road industry, and may even replace ICE technology in some applications.
Despite the negativity surrounding fossil fuels, it seems that in recent months internal combustion engines have started to take over thanks to dedicated efforts to find increasingly innovative solutions to improve energy efficiency and thus reduce their environmental impact.
“Kohler sees the future as a multi-energy landscape, with multiple technological solutions to meet future customer needs and requirements,” says Vincenzo Perrone, president of Kohler Engines. “We will continue to invest in engines and expand their production. We will improve engine efficiency, even in the smallest HP, and develop electronic controls on small engines. We will pursue the development of hydrogen solutions that have the same performance as diesel units, as well as natural gas and biogas engines. We will continue to bring to market hybrid modules. In summary, we are investing in a diversified energy future, in which a wide range of power options and multiple technologies will coexist for many years”.
Kohler’s ongoing commitment to decarbonization does not set aside ICE technology, but transforms it by continuing to invest in internal combustion engines that can provide clean, affordable energy to customers for years to come. Technological changes will not happen at the same time in all customer segments, and currently there is still no single solution for all needs. The choice of one solution over another will depend on the machine, as well as factors such as duty cycle, operating environment and location, and market-specific regulations and incentives.
Faced with the complexity of this scenario, Kohler responds with different solutions needed to meet the requirements of a wide range of machines. Investing in new technologies with the ultimate goal of decarbonization and achieving sustainability goals requires the development of all types of engines.
Thus the new pillars of Kohler’s strategy are born, new avenues to be pursued: alternative fuels, more economical and logistically manageable; electrification and hybridization, to reduce engine size or achieve zero emissions during operation; and hydrogen as a potential green source fuel.