COLUMBUS, Ind. — Cummins on Thursday unveiled a new 5-liter V8 diesel engine, which company officials said will be a strong fit for school buses, among other applications.

The company held a press event at an airplane hangar in Columbus, home of the manufacturer's headquarters and its Columbus Engine Plant, to share details on the new ISV5.0 and to show it running in a Type C school bus and several other test vehicles.

Dave Crompton, vice president of Cummins and general manager of its engine business, told SBF that with many school districts facing funding shortfalls, the ISV5.0 can provide advantages with a lower initial purchase price and a "significant improvement in fuel economy," leading to a low total cost of ownership.

"You get the lower cost, but the durability is still there," Crompton said as he sat aboard the test school bus, which was loaded with sandbags to simulate a full passenger load.

Jeff Caldwell, general manager of Cummins' global pickup business, said that the ISV5.0 is a quieter-running engine, which can enhance the driving experience for school bus drivers and help in managing student behavior.

Caldwell noted that the lower price of the engine will be attractive to school districts with limited funding for capital purchases. Caldwell has firsthand experience with district budgets and decision making — he serves on the board of the local school district, Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp.

He added that Cummins has taken the ISV5.0-equipped test school bus to the Bartholomew district shop and had staff members try it out.

A display model of the ISV5.0 on stage at the Cummins press event in Indiana.

A display model of the ISV5.0 on stage at the Cummins press event in Indiana.

During the press event, Jim Katzenmeyer, executive engineer for Cummins' V8 program, described notable features of the ISV5.0. Among them: a compacted graphite iron cylinder block, a forged steel crankshaft, high-strength aluminum alloy heads and composite valve covers to offer maximum durability in a lightweight package. Those features, along with dual overhead camshafts, also contribute to the engine's reduced noise, vibration and harshness characteristics.

The Bosch High Pressure Common Rail fuel system and the Cummins VGT Variable Geometry Turbocharger contribute to a peak torque of 560 lb.-ft. and quick throttle response. Ratings from 200 (149 kW) to 275 horsepower (205 kW) are available.

Cummins officials also said that in cold weather, the advanced ceramic glow plug system significantly reduces start time and electrical current draw, reducing vehicle charging system requirements.

The ISV5.0 will be manufactured at the Columbus Engine Plant. Production will start during the fourth quarter of 2014.

For more on the ISV5.0, go here.

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Thomas McMahon

Thomas McMahon

Executive Editor

Thomas had covered the pupil transportation industry with School Bus Fleet since 2002. When he's not writing articles about yellow buses, he enjoys running long distances and making a joyful noise with his guitar.

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