The Spirit of Engine Innovation

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-By Robert Hoshowsky

For almost 150 years, Deutz has upheld a reputation for designing, engineering, and manufacturing high-quality, reliable and innovative engines. As one of the largest independent makers of diesel engines in the world, Deutz’s rich history goes back to the time of Nikolaus August Otto, one of the company’s founding fathers. Otto – whose name would one day become the root of the word ‘automobile’ – was a German inventor, and created the world’s first practical internal-combustion engine which burned fuel directly in a piston chamber. Today his name, like that of Deutz, is synonymous with innovation, precision, and the spirit of invention.

“There is certainly a lot of history with our company,” says Max Torkar, General Manager and Financial Controller for Deutz’s Australian operations, which has been an integral provider of quality engines and parts to the nation since 1952. Headquartered in Melbourne with branches in Kalgoorlie and Brisbane, Deutz Australia Pty Ltd has a significant network of about 16 dealers strategically located across Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands. Offering a wide range of German-made diesel and natural gas engines for a variety of purposes – such as industrial, mining, marine, energy and agricultural uses – the company also provides service and carries a vast selection of spare parts for all Deutz engine products.

“Our key dealers are really our face to our customers, as they do virtually all of the service on our behalf,” says Mr Torkar of the company, which moved to a new site at Brough st Springvale last year in response to restructuring the focus of Deutz Australia. The move came at a time when Deutz reverted to its core business – diesel and gas engines for industry and power generation – and relocated to a size that was more appropriate to the company’s objectives.

Today, Deutz’s transport and logistics is handled by Simons National Carriers, which allows the company greater flexibility in handling its engine stock. While most of the company’s Research and Development is done in Germany, Deutz Australia has a small workshop for specialised preparation of prototype engines, along with R&D and technical training. The Spare Parts arm – a key component of the business – is warehoused, dispatched and operated from the Springvale Head Office location, near to the Princess Hwy and the M1 Motorway. The new modern premises, says Mr Torkar, will serve the Australian arm of Deutz and its customers well as the company embarks on the next stage of its business development in the Australian, New Zealand, and Oceania Markets.

Along with selling a range of high-quality gas and diesel engines for mining, marine, industrial and other applications, the company’s network of professional Deutz Engine Dealers carries stock of spare parts to service all customers in local markets. “We try and grow the spare parts business as much as we can,” says Mr Torkar, who says the company encourages customers to use genuine Deutz parts from key dealers for the best possible operation and lifespan of their diesel and gas engines. Using real Deutz parts and recommended oils and coolants will not only extend the life of the engine, but failing to do so can breach some of the terms and conditions of the warranty.

“There are many key benefits to using the right products,” says Mr Torkar. “You are going to keep your engine working for a longer period of time at an optimal level with a greater chance of achieving higher fuel efficiencies. When you look at the big picture, most of the actual cost of an engine is the fuel cost – more than 90 per cent – so you have to put it into perspective. We normally specify the recommended lubricants and oils to be used in the engine; otherwise you are not going to get optimum performance from the engine.” Some of the products the company recommends for diesel and gas engines include lubricants from Fuchs – the largest independent manufacturer of specialty lubricants in the world – and auto parts and accessories giant Bosch.

As one of the world’s major independent manufacturers of diesel engines and natural gas engines, Deutz is one of the Top 5 diesel engine suppliers to the nation, supplying water, oil, and air-cooled engines for mobile machinery, stationary applications, agricultural machinery, automotive and marine applications. No matter the type, capacity, model or fuel source, Deutz engines are renowned for their reliability, low operating costs, outstanding performance, reduced fuel consumption, and extremely low emission levels. The parent company is a strong proponent of Research & Development, investing 100 million Euros every year into R&D so there is always an evolution in its engines. A strict emphasis on quality control also means a reduced likelihood of warranty claims in the future.

“The main reason customers choose Deutz is the quality of the engine, the amount of R&D which is technologically very advanced, and other benefits, like claimed better fuel efficiency,” says Mr Torkar. In Germany, the parent company is focused on embarking into strategic alliances with various peak companies, such as Volvo trucks – when an engine in one of the vehicles needs to be replaced, it is best replaced with a fuel-efficient Deutz engine.

Today, one of the greatest challenges facing Deutz and other diesel engine manufacturers is the implementation of future exhaust emission laws. In Europe and the United States, there have been regulations regarding the systematic reduction of pollutant concentrations in diesel engine exhaust since 1996. These regulations, however, do not exist in all countries, and engines often must be retrofitted to accommodate the emission guidelines of the country to which they are shipped.

“There are almost no emission standards in Australia, but the country will be going to a Tier 2 level; in Europe and America, they are already at Tier 4,” says Mr Torkar. While specifications vary, the goal is to greatly reduce emissions from future diesel engines by integrating engine and fuel controls, which will result in a system which gains the greatest air-quality benefits. The goal is to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter by 90 per cent in Tier 4, and Deutz is a world leader in the design and production of diesel engines that not only benefit customers today, but future generations to come through reduced emissions of NOx (Nitric oxide), CO (Carbon monoxide), HC (Hydrocarbons), PM (Particle emission), and CO2 (Carbon dioxide).

Although exhaust emission limiting and reduction is highly complex, and requires changes to engine design, injection, combustion and charging technology, and the use of exhaust post-processing Deutz – after successfully implementing the first steps of the European and US emission reduction – has turned its focus to the future European and US exhaust stage (EU Stufe IV, EPA Tier 4 final). This, according to Deutz, is the greatest challenge to engine manufacturers so far and will lead to the application of further technology modules. As long as these technical modifications to engine design allow safe implementation of the legal provisions or customer requirements, Deutz remains committed to the economy, performance, and reliability of the diesel engine. “These changes will motivate people to become more concerned about the environment and go for engines that have a better carbon footprint,” says Mr Torkar.

While there are many reasons customers choose Deutz, the biggest reason is the engines themselves. The company’s 2015 series (180-240kW at 2,000 rpm) has remained one of the most widely versatile and trusted power plants worldwide. Available in six or eight-cylinder turbo, the company’s 2015 Series engines are compact, water-cooled, and can solve all drive problems in the 110-322 BHP (82-240kW) power range. Able to operate in the world’s toughest environments – from the frozen tundra of Siberia to the remote sheep stations of Australia – the 2015 Series works day in and day out, often in excess of up to 40,000 hours without overhaul. Along with peak performance, the 2015 Series can achieve a fuel consumption rate of 2.91 kWh (7,400 BTU/BHP-hr), has a fully electronic ignition system with no moving parts, individual coil packs for each cylinder, one cooling circuit, off-highway components, and many other features.

With a range of gas and diesel engines that are second to none, a network of over 70 service outlets throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, over 500 trained service personnel worldwide, service and genuine Spare Parts for all Deutz products and 24-hour emergency service back-up, small wonder the 150-year-old company has amassed countless satisfied clients over the years.

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September 22, 2018, 6:09 PM AEST