American Power Group Corporation announced March 20 that its subsidiary, American Power Group, Inc, has partnered with Fitzgerald Glider Kits and the WheelTime Network to offer the nation's first Class 8 natural gas dual fuel glider kit. The new natural gas glider made its debut at APG's booth at the Mid-America Truck Show in Louisville KY and will be available beginning June 1.

Lyle Jensen, American Power Group Corporation's president and chief executive officer, says: "We expect the 2013 Fitzgerald/APG Dual Fuel Glider to become one of most innovative and exciting new Class 8 vehicles on the road with 20%-30% lower net fuel costs as compared to standard diesel engines and up to 70% lower annual maintenance costs. The introduction of a Dual Fuel Glider, coupled with the resources provided by a Fitzgerald/WheelTime Network/APG collaboration, could be the game-changer that accelerates the transition of Class 8 truck fleets to natural gas as an alternative fuel."

The benefits of a glider kit are significant, according to Jensen. The initial purchase price is typically 25% lower than a new diesel truck. The Detroit Series 60 12.7 liter engine, which is rated at 500hp and 1,650 lb-ft torque, was one of the most popular engines of the 1990s, pre-dating the addition of emissions reduction equipment required on later model year engines. There are significantly less maintenance costs and downtime with the Series 60 12.7 liter engine. Additionally, fuel efficiency is typically better, with fuel mileage of up to 7 miles per gallon. The Fitzgerald Glider comes with a three-year, 300,000 mile warranty on both the engine and transmission.

By adding APG's V5000 Turbocharged Natural Gas System to a Fitzgerald Glider, the fleet owner can realize the additional benefits of today's favorable price spread between diesel fuel and natural gas, Jensen says. Typical net annual fuel savings when operating on APG's patented dual fuel technology range from 20%-30% compared to standard diesel operation. APG will secure "EPA OUL Approval" for the Detroit Series 60 engine family in accordance with the EPA Clean Alternative Fuel Vehicle and Engine Conversion Regulations. APG will market and service the APG Dual Fuel Add-On Option through its recently announced national WheelTime Network Authorized Dealer Network of nearly 200 service centers, 2,800 service bays and 3,000 factory-trained technicians.

The APG system is a cost-effective and non-invasive patented turbocharged natural gas dual fuel conversion technology. The system displaces a large percent of diesel with either CNG or LNG, uses normal diesel oil, allows a vehicle to retain existing diesel maintenance cycles, and offers a 300-800 mile dual fuel range with no loss of power and torque, depending on the route profile and tank configuration. No high-temperature parts or custom high-pressure fuel injectors are required.

With no practical design limits for engine models or horsepower, the APG system is currently EPA-approved for 110 OUL engine families and APG is expected to receive EPA approval for more than 100 additional OUL and IUL engine families by the end of calendar 2013. Additionally, the APG system offers the flexibility to return a vehicle to 100% diesel operation at any time. At end-of-life or vehicular rotation, the APG system and natural gas tank can be easily removed and installed on another EPA approved engine.