Kenworth remains to be one of the leading brands when it comes to manufacturing semi-trucks that provide exceptional performance and driver comfort. In this article, we’ll explore when the Kenworth T680 came out on the market and how it revolutionized efficiency and comfort in trucking.

When Did the Kenworth T680 Come Out?

Kenworth announced the production of the Kenworth T680 at the 2012 Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, as it was meant to replace the T660 and T700 units. However, due to EPA13 emission requirements, the model wasn’t released until 2013.


The powerful Kenworth T680. (Source: Kenworth)

The other Class 8 releases that year focused on fuel economy through aerodynamics. On the other hand, Kenworth concentrated on offering better power efficiency by improving the T680’s powertrain. The flagship variants feature an EPA2021 PACCAR MX-13 Engine with TruckTech+ Remote Diagnostics and Over-the-Air Updates, which give users intelligent driving capabilities. The T680 also comes in a cheaper variant, manufactured with a PACCAR MX-11 engine.

Aside from these configurations, the T680 has an all-new cab design with a 2.1-meter width, state-of-the-art construction, and stamped aluminum base. Kenworth continues to manufacture the T680, albeit in a slightly configured iteration compared to its original release. The company calls the new units the T680 Next Generation, which come with a more high-tech dashboard, a taller grille, and streamlined cab design.

How Was Kenworth T680 Created?

The design of the Kenworth T680 we know today can be traced to several models: the T660, T880, and W990. To understand how the unit achieved its maximum comfort and efficiency, let’s go through these units one by one:

Kenworth T660

In 2007, Kenworth released the T660, which replaced the classic T600. The model graced a similar look to its predecessor. However, it was manufactured with better aerodynamics and an engine that will meet the new emission requirements for Class 8 conventional cab trucks.


The impressive Kenworth T660. (Source: North American Truck & Trailer, Inc.)

Furthermore, the T660 also came with GPS navigation, better driver info displays, multiplexed wirings, onboard engine diagnostics, and other technological solutions that improved the overall riding performance of the unit. Despite all these impressive features, the T660 was ultimately discontinued in 2017 and effectively replaced by the T680. 

Also read: Kenworth T660 Truck: A History of Efficiency and Innovation

Kenworth T880

The first Kenworth T880 was delivered in March 2014. The Class 8 semi-truck was released as a replacement for the T800. It shares a similar cab design to the T680, albeit in an 8” wider size. It also comes with a one-piece windshield and is currently available with a Cummins X15 or PACCAR MX13 engine. 


The critically-acclaimed Kenworth T880. (Source: Chicago Motor Cars)

The American Truck Dealers (ATD) hailed the T880 as the 2015 Truck of the Year. The organization saw how dependable the truck is for vocational use. Because of the overall rugged design of the truck, it’s usually configured to be a pickup, concrete mixer, firetruck, and delivery truck. Kenworth still manufactures the T880 to this date.

Kenworth W990

In 2019, Kenworth released the W990, an upgraded and more contemporary version of the W900L. It sports the same cab design as the T680, with a 1.5” longer hood compared to the W900L. It’s made available with PACCAR MX13 and MX11 engines and the updated Kenworth navigation dashboard. Like the T880, Kenworth still manufactures the W990. 


All-black unit of the Kenworth W990. (Source: Kenworth Sales Company)

What Made the Kenworth T680 Special?

The Kenworth T680 wouldn’t be popular among truck drivers today without its impressive engine, interior, exterior, and high-tech features. Let’s go through each of these categories:


The engine configurations of the T680 can be categorized into two: the flagship EPA 2021 PACCAR MX-13 and the optional PACCAR Mx-11. 

The PACCAR MX-13 has a 12.9-liter engine with 405-510 horsepower and 1550-1850 lb-ft of torque. It’s mated with a PACCAR TX12 automatic transmission and a PACCAR DX-40 rear tandem axle. The exhaust/aftertreatment system features a right-hand under fairing DPF/SCR configuration, along with a DEF tank that provides 21 usable gallons.

On the other hand, the PACCAR MX-11 has a 10.8-liter engine with 355-455 horsepower and 1250-1700 lb-ft of torque. It has the same configuration as the MX-13 variant except for its small round DEF tank of 11 usable gallons.

Needless to say, the MX13 variant is a popular option for regional haulers and heavy-duty vocational service providers. On the other hand, the MX11 units are geared toward city use.


The ergonomic and high-tech cabin of the Kenworth T680. (Source: Trucks, Parts, Service)


Kenworth takes pride in the T680’s world-class cabin. Its spacious interior ensures a convenient riding experience, while the high-tech features give drivers a sense of control. In terms of ergonomics, the T680 is equipped with Kenworth seats made of durable vinyl, cloth, and premium ultra-leather skin. They provide exceptional comfort, adjustability, and suspension to withstand the most challenging roads.

For style, Kenworth manufactures the T680 in two colors: Slate Gray and Tan. The two choices come with their respective complementary trim colors.


The T680 doesn’t fall short when it comes to aerodynamics. It comes with front air dams, long side extenders, fairing extenders on the chassis, and exhaust cutout covers. The model’s overall design allows it to do all-day hauling without the risk of excessive fuel consumption and overheating.

Aside from this, it also comes with wide-base single tires, reducing at least 300 lbs. of weight. The lightweight design also improves the fuel mileage of the unit.


As mentioned earlier, one of the key features of the T680 is the TruckTech+ Remote Diagnostics and Over-the-Air updates. These integrated solutions allow drivers to monitor their units’ overall performance and functionality. This way, they can make intelligent road decisions to reduce the risk of engine failure. These solutions can also automatically send repair and maintenance requests to Kenworth service providers. 

Furthermore, the T680 comes with a Driver Performance Assistant module that provides real-time analysis of your driving technique. This will allow you to improve your fuel economy and optimize the truck’s performance depending on the environment. 

Kenworth T680 Parts

Here at Shoreline Truck Parts, we’re adding more truck parts to our inventory. We have same-day shipping availble for most parts that we carry as our goal is to maximize your uptime! Check out our website for all of your semi truck parts needs. Or give us a call or text with any questions that you might have (616) 834-1503.

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