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Get up to speed on CNG vs. LNG

Jason Cannon May 30, 2013

Natural gas trucks are expected to make up 10 percent of the marketplace in the coming few years.

That’s a lot of units, but will they be compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquified natural gas (LNG), or a combination of the two? Which will emerge as the segment leader?

And here’s the biggest question: What’s the difference?

Aside from the obvious differences in their compounds, I don’t know that much about the difference. And aside from making sure that fuel is readily available for whichever you choose, I’m not clear on the application specific benefits.

I imagine I’m not alone.

Much of my job is understanding and relating facts to readers, and I can only relate things to the extent that I understand them. With LNG and CNG the next budding “big deal” in trucking, learning more about each will be important going forward.

That’s why I’ve got June 18 circled on my calendar.

In the sales field, you’re not dealing with people who are ready to make a commitment to natural gas right now. They’re not going to buy a truck from you today. They don’t understand it. Sure, they see the savings potential and the environmental benefits, but selling a truck these days is tough. Selling cutting edge technology backed by an infrastructure that’s not quite developed yet, is even tougher.

Westport will hold a free webinar with Clean Energy Fuels, entitled “CNG and LNG: What’s Best for Your Fleet,” June 18 from 1 to 2 p.m. (EST) that could go a long way in helping us all better understand what is on the horizon and how to communicate those benefits.

This webinar will focus on the considerations for fleets when choosing between CNG and LNG applications for their vehicles including the differences in fuel and equipment costs, how to calculate payback and ROI, and what’s happening in infrastructure build-out.

I know what you’re saying, “I sell trucks, not buy them.”

Being able to communicate the differences, and potential benefits, of CNG versus LNG is going to become an important part of sales calls, if it’s not already. Remember what I said about my job? Much of your job is understanding and relating facts to your customers, and you can only relate things to the extent that you understand them.

If you have customers who have already expressed interest in going green, invite them to join the webinar. Watch it with them. Let Westport do all the heavy lift. All you have to to is be available to explain how your manufacturer can meet their LNG or CNG needs.

You can register for the webinar here.

Jason Cannon is Online Managing Editor for Truck Parts & Service.

You can follow me on twitter at @By_Jason_Cannon

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