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Project Profile: SmartWay Upgrade Kits

SmartWay Upgrade Kits

photo credit: Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Department of Energy


I-5 Corridor, Oregon

Project Sponsor / Borrower

Oregon Department of Transportation

Oregon Department of Energy

Other Partners - U.S. DOT, U.S. EPA, SmartWay Transport Partnership, West Coast Diesel Collaborative, the trucking industry, and Cascade Sierra Solutions

Program Areas

Project Finance




Cascade Sierra Solutions (CSS), a non-profit organization, is responsible for deploying the SmartWay Upgrade Kits, which can include:

  • Engine idle reduction technology, such as an auxiliary power unit, direct fired heater, or truck stop electrification
  • Low rolling resistance tires
  • Advanced aerodynamics for tractors and trailers
  • Exhaust after-treatment devices, such as oxidation catalysts and particulate filters

SmartWay Upgrade Kits can reduce fuel consumption, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen oxide emissions by 10 to 15 percent. When the kit includes an exhaust after-treatment device, particulate matter emissions are reduced by 25 to 90 percent, depending upon the type of technology.
CSS has upgraded over 5,000 trucks owned by trucking businesses from all 48 contiguous states and Alaska. These businesses are benefiting financially from over 13 million gallons of fuel savings to date. Idle reduction equipment upgrades typically produce more savings than their monthly equipment payments. This is possible because CSS combines grants, tax credits, business incentives, and private sector financing to offer truck owners an affordable below-market financing package.

CSS has received several environmental awards from FHWA and EPA for achievements in improving air quality along transportation corridors.

Ongoing financial assistance through grants and a revolving loan fund

Funding Sources

$3.0 million Oregon Transportation Infrastructure Bank loan backed by equipment sales
Lending partners (banks, financial institutions)

Project Delivery / Contract Method

Not applicable

Private Partner

Cascade Sierra Solutions

EPA West Coast Diesel Collaborative

EPA SmartWay Transport Partnership

Trucking industry

Project Advisors / Consultants

Not applicable


Oregon Transportation Infrastructure Bank (OTIB)

Duration / Status

More than 5,000 on-board units deployed by March 2011.

Goal of upgrading 30,000 trucks by 2013.

Financial Status

Not applicable

  • The application of SIB funds is unique, as SIB funds are typically expended on more traditional projects such as highway and bridge construction. The Upgrade Kits are also eligible for a 35% tax credit through the Oregon Department of Energy.
  • Because of the fuel savings, upfront capital costs of SmartWay kits are generally paid back within one to three years. In addition to the short payback period, if a loan is needed to purchase an upgrade kit, the monthly fuel savings exceed the monthly loan payments, thus increasing profits from the first day companies use the kits. Trucks using the full complement of SmartWay technology can expect to save approximately 300 gallons of fuel per month.
  • This marks the first deployment of SmartWay Upgrade Kits and innovative financing along a major transportation corridor. The U.S. DOT, EPA, and DOE intend to work together with State and local governments, non-profits, state trucking associations in an effort to replicate this deployment strategy around the country.
Related Links / Articles

West Coast Collaborative

U.S. EPA SmartWay Site

SmartWay Upgrade Kits Proposal Sept. 2005


Diane Turchetta
Federal Highway Administration

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