When it comes to city hauling, agility and maneuverability there are the two main characteristics that truck drivers look for when buying conventional-cab units. Regardless of their payload capacity, they can be counter-productive for workers if they can’t easily go through busy streets.

This is why the Class 6 mid-size offering of Kenworth, the T270, is considered one of the most efficient hauling machines for city use. This article will look at its development and design history throughout the years to see how it has provided significant value to business owners and truck drivers.

History of the Kenworth T270

To understand how the Kenworth T270 achieved its current agile and efficient design, it’s imperative to look at its history. 

Kenworth T300

In 1994, there was an overwhelming market demand for medium-duty trucks for freight services. For this reason, Kenworth introduced the T300 model, a Class 6 truck with a powerful engine, excellent payload output, and efficient design.


Kenworth T300

Aside from contributing to the rise of delivery and drop-off services in the country, the T300 line also inspired Kenworth to manufacture more medium-sized conventional-cab trucks, such as the Kenworth T270.

Kenworth T270

Kenworth further expanded their mid-size offerings in 2008. The company released the Class 5 T170 commercial truck, the Class 6 T270 mid-size truck, and the Class 7 T370, which can further be expanded to Class 8.


Kenworth T270


Kenworth T270 Upgrades

Kenworth provided the T270 with several upgrades in technology, safety and engineering. 

Some of the most notable ones are the following:

  • March 2013 – Two-piece or one-piece roof fairings to give precision fit and finish to the Kenworth T270.
  • June 2013 – Hendrickson PRIMAAX® EX rear air suspension with higher roll stiffness, reduced roll steer coefficient, increased lift capacity, heavy-duty bushings for reduced maintenance, and redesigned U-beam assembly.
  • December 2016 – The Bendix® Wingman® Advanced™ system, a radar-based collision mitigation technology, delivers adaptive cruise control with braking and autonomous emergency braking features to help drivers mitigate rear-end collisions.
  • December 2017 – Dana Spicer S140 series of single-reduction, single-drive axles, ranging from 16,000-lb to 21,000-lb gross axle weight rating.
  • December 2017 – Bendix® Wingman Fusion™ advanced driver assistance system with enhanced collision mitigation, lane departure warning, stationary vehicle braking, and over-speed alert and action. 

Kenworth T280

Despite its numerous upgrades, the Kenworth T270 was ultimately replaced in 2021. Kenworth released the T180, T280, and T380, which served as upgraded versions of the T180, T280, and T80. The three models came with the new PACCAR TX-8 automatic transmission, which promised to provide better versatility and convenience for drivers.


Kenworth T280

Furthermore, the new lineup came with bumper-to-back-of-cab measurements and hood types for various applications.  

Kenworth T270 Design: Hybrid Agility and Efficiency

One of the features that made the T270 one of the most popular models in the Class 6 industry was its hybrid mechanism. This further boosted the already powerful engine of the T270 with electrical technology.

The T270 hybrids were powered by a PACCAR PX-6 engine, which included an integral transmission-mounted motor, a frame-mounted 340-volt battery pack, and a power management system. These specifications create excellent and efficient fuel consumption for every ride.

Aside from these hybrid features, the T270 also came with an Eaton 6-stepped Ultrashift, 152” minimum wheelbase, 130 amp brushless alternator, Dana Spicer front axles from 8,000 to 14,600 lbs, Dana rear axles from 16,000 to 26,000 lbs, and Kenworth aero heated motors.


Kenworth T270 hybrid engine

The T270 hybrid also introduced “regenerative braking.” This mechanism allowed the truck to generate, store, and use 60 hp and 310 ft-lb torque electrical power, assisting the diesel engine during acceleration. These configurations can be modified further with an electric power take-off to allow energy to be drawn from the batteries for engine-off operation. 

Since the T270 was originally manufactured for delivery businesses and city use, the hybrid motor was developed to maintain its fuel efficiency despite slower stop-and-go traffic. The parallel hybrid power system was designed with Eaton, which acted as an electric motor using power from the battery pack instead of the engine.

There is no denying that the electrical technologies found in the T270 made the line one of the most popular models for business owners. Thanks to its efficient power consumption, the T270 model led to improved fuel economy and productivity, resulting in increased efficiency for owners and operators.

Improve the Agility and Efficiency of the Kenworth T270

Although the hybrid engine of the Kenworth T270 delivers exceptional performance in terms of responsiveness and fuel economy, the HVAC system can have an impact on the driver’s comfort.

For this reason, getting an upgraded HVAC box has been one of the most common modifications for the Kenworth T270. Fortunately, Shorline Truck Parts offers high-quality  Kenworth heater boxes that are compatible OEM units initially installed in the T270. 


Premium Medium-duty HVAC Box

When searching for a new HVAC box for your T270, it’s best to look for one built with 18-gauge 304 stainless steel that is spot welded with stainless fasteners. This ensures optimal functionality and a longer lifespan. Aside from this, it’s a good idea to go for an upgraded blower motor that can produce a 15% increase in CFM over OEM, a new evaporator & heater core, an electronically operated door actuator, and a fresh air intake door weldment. These features can further improve the comfort and efficiency of your T270.

Enjoy the Full Power of the Kenworth T270

Because of its hybrid engine, the Kenworth T270 remains one of the most efficient medium-size cab trucks on the market today. It provides versatility, productivity, efficiency, and reliability to business owners and truck drivers.

To experience the full power of your unit, make sure you have the best HVAC box for Kenworth T270

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