The John Deere 644K and 944K Hybrid wheel loaders have collectively logged more than 1 million operating hours in the field, the company said. This level of real-world experience is key as more OEMs look to John Deere Power Systems for technologies to reduce emissions, improve fuel economy, and enhance machine performance and reliability.
This milestone follows the announcement that the John Deere family of Stage V engines received official certification.
John Deere was among the first to introduce electric drive technology in off-highway equipment, as it produced the 644K hybrid loader in 2013 and the 944K hybrid loader in 2015. John Deere Power Systems joined forces with John Deere Electronic Solutions to successfully design and implement fully integrated electric drivetrain systems — a concept first introduced at BAUMA 2016.
While off-highway equipment manufacturers continue to explore and evaluate hybrid and electrification solutions for their respective markets, the demands of the end customer for reliability and productivity continue to increase. In response to this, John Deere is developing technology to meet manufacturers at various phases of implementation and development.
“In this emerging market for electrification technology, we are working closely with our OEM customers to understand their application needs,” said Darren Almond, drivetrain product planning manager for John Deere Power Systems. While the off-highway industry continues to grow and adapt, its demands remain the same. And to that point, a rugged market requires a product that can meet expectations in a variety of applications — whether diesel, hybrid or electric.
“Exceeding 1 million operating hours shows that John Deere has an in-depth understanding of how to make hybrid drivetrain systems work in the field,” said Almond. “We can use our expertise to discover innovative ways to develop reliable, efficient, cost-effective alternatives to traditional drivetrain systems.”
Accounting for the entire system solution will be vital to the successful development of this emerging market. The OEM electrification approach of John Deere seeks to offer integrated solutions that address the interfaces between the electrical generator and/or motors, power electronics, and mechanical interfaces.