Caterpillar Unveils New C13D Engine for Off-Highway Equipment

Caterpillar unveiled a new diesel engine platform at ConExpo 2023, designed to achieve increased power density, torque and fuel efficiency for a wide range of off-highway equipment.

The C13D engine will be available for early OEM pilots in 2025 and scheduled for production in 2026. It is designed for equipment such as rock crushers, screeners, and grinders; trenchers; agriculture tractors, harvesters and self-propelled sprayers; woodchippers; material-handling equipment; and large industrial pumps. 

“It is not about bringing new technology to the forefront,” said Dustin Childers, global marketing manager of Caterpillar Industrial Power Systems Division. “It’s about applying that technology that Caterpillar has been investing in for decades to new applications.”

By supplying comparable power and torque available from Caterpillar’s current 13-, 15- and single-turbo 18-liter engine platforms, the Cat C13D platform provides an opportunity for OEMs to downsize the engine and simplify design, assembly and supply chain requirements across multiple applications. This consolidation can also reduce maintenance, parts and technical training complexity for end users.

Childers said the 6-cylinder Cat C13D engine platform offers eight power ratings from 456 to 690 horsepower and delivers up to 3,200 Newton meters of peak torque. 

“It’s got a higher power-to-size ratio than really anything else in the market today,” he said. “It’s the same or better performance than the larger engine platforms that we have.”

All eight power ratings will be available on a common core engine, enabling OEMs to reduce their inventory and integration costs, and the combination of the all-new rear gear train, stiffer core architecture and common rail fuel system reduces noise by up to 3 dB when compared with the C13D’s predecessors.

Engine-mounted aftertreatment and cooling packs will also be available from the factory to reduce installation and validation costs.

According to Caterpillar, the C13D engine platform has been engineered to deliver the performance, durability, packaging and ease of maintenance demanded by both manufacturers and users of off-highway equipment.

“Off-highway OEMs and equipment owners face a rapidly evolving business environment that demands improved worksite productivity and reduced operating costs while addressing increasingly stringent emissions standards,” said Steve Ferguson, senior vice president of Caterpillar Industrial Power Systems. “Internal combustion engines are the prevailing workhorses on most jobsites around the world, which is why we’ve invested in the next-generation Cat C13D diesel engine platform to address their challenges.”

The new engine platform offers up to a 20% increase in power and up to 25% more low-speed torque than the previous generation of Cat engines in its power class. 

Childers said it has an altitude performance that is nearly twice as high as legacy Cat engines of up to 12,000 feet. In addition, the C13D will continue operating in extreme ambient temperatures as high as 140 degrees Fahrenheit and as low as minus 40 degrees with aids.

Engineers designed the Cat C13D engine for easier maintenance by integrating components and reducing the number of leak joints by more than 45%. Combined, the upgrades result in lower fluids consumption and extended service intervals as long as 1,000 hours.

“It is designed for ease of use and service, which means less maintenance, less operating costs for fewer components to just store and hold inventory to work on,” Childers said.

He said the Cat C13D enables operators to use renewable liquid fuels such as 100% hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), B100 distilled biodiesel, and even up to B100 standard biodiesel by working with a Cat dealer. The new engine is also designed for the future development of natural gas or hydrogen fuel capabilities. 

“We’ve created and designed it with sustainability in mind,” Childers added. “It’s really like three engines in one.”

It meets the emission standards of higher regulated markets such as European Stage V, U.S. EPA Tier 4 Final, and more. Further, the modularization of its architecture and elimination of components allow the C13D to accommodate future tiers of emission standards without the relocation of customer connection points.

The C13D will be equipped with Cat Digital Services, an integrated suite of software and hardware solutions supplying equipment owners with information that allows them to make decisions on the fly on the health of the equipment to minimize downtime.

“It’s a powerful, efficient class-leading diesel engine for us,” Childers said. “We think it’s a game changer in the market that is going to support our customers and that next-generation design.”