CAT, FPT Develop Supercharged Diesel Engine

February 7, 2013

Yachting Journal

Cat C12.9 Designed to Deliver Performance in a Compact Package

With the specter of increased fuel prices and stringent emissions regulations on the horizon, Caterpillar has joined forces with Fiat Powertrain Technologies (FPT Industrial, S.p.A.) to deliver a solution for its pleasure craft customers seeking a high performance, fuel efficient marine diesel engine – the Cat C12.9. 

Expected to be available in 2014, the C12.9 will be available in both 850 mhp @ 2300 rpm and 1000 mhp @ 2300 rpm iterations. 

The new power plant uses innovative fuel and air management techniques to comply with United States EPA Tier 3, IMO II, and CCNR Stage II emission regulations while offering incredible performance at the simple touch of the throttle or joystick. 

Bob Hallengren, product director for Caterpillar Marine Power Systems, said, “The C12.9 provides our customers with industry-leading engine performance characteristics for power density and vessel performance while meeting all present and future environmental regulations. Most importantly, this outstanding product is backed by the global Cat dealer network.”

While owners may opt for conventional Cat controls, the design of the C12.9 is conducive to the seamless integration of the newly-announced Cat pod drives.  Furthermore, they may prefer the installation of the Cat proprietary Three60 Precision Control featuring joystick maneuverability. With the installation of this trifecta of power, propulsion, and control, the vessel’s operator is afforded an unparalleled level of low-end torque and maneuverability. 

In its turbocharged variant, the new C12.9 offers a commendable 850 mhp made possible by FPT Industrial’s advancements in second-generation common rail technology as well as an expertly designed air management system; the engine’s small envelope and high power output make it the ideal choice for the discerning yachtsman who seeks performance in a compact package.  In its turbo-supercharged version, the C12.9 is unsurpassed in power density and allows its 1000 mhp to be applied in vessels previously restricted to smaller, less powerful engines due to engine room size.  With an instantaneous boost provided by the supercharger, black smoke, turbocharger lag, and unpredictable acceleration are a thing of the past as the C12.9 maximizes available boost pressure via an electro-magnetic clutch; as the turbocharger spools up, the supercharger disengages, ensuring the most powerful and fuel efficient operation of the engine through the entire speed range.  After many hours of enjoyment, servicing the C12.9 is effortless owing to the left or right hand service option paired with the available electric fuel priming pump; plenty of electricity is made available with the optional 175 amp alternator installed for vessels with large direct current consumption.

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