New for 2017 trucks, Volvo is now offering its I-Shift power train automated manual transmission with a crawler gear option: a system it says is entirely unique for series-produced heavy trucks.
Volvo I-Shift with Crawler Gears is for applications requiring a slow speed and maneuverability: applications such as concrete mixers with curb pouring capability, asphalt paving, spreaders, dump trucks, heavy haul and line painters. Volvo says the new power train option is aimed directly at the vocational truck market.
During a press event at Volvo Group's power train plant in Hagerstown, Md., product manager Wade Long discussed the features and benefits of Volvo's new system.
"Crawler gears add one or two low-low ratios to aid starting on upgrades for heavy combination vehicles and vocational trucks, making the 12-speed transmission into 13- or 14-speed gearboxes", said Long. "The 13’s crawler ratio is 17.54 to 1 and the 14’s are 19.38 to 1 and 32 to 1. Concrete mixer trucks, which have to creep while pouring curbs, are a good example of a vocational truck suitable for the crawler gear equipped I-Shift option."
The gears are contained in a back section just ahead of the bell housing. The crawler-gear section adds 5 inches to length and 90 pounds to a 12-speed an I-Shift’s 720 pound weight. Gears and other hardware have been hardened to withstand frequent shifting under harsh conditions.
The clutch also has larger dampening springs to better absorb torsional vibrations and add durability.
Increased fuel economy on 2017 Volvo diesel engines
Volvo's 2017 D11 and D13 diesels feature combustion and fuel-system improvements for better fuel economy and responsiveness. The 10.8-liter D11’s top rating is 425 hp, up from the current 405 hp. The 12.8-liter D13’s 455-hp rating will add 100 lb-ft, going to 1,850 lb-ft. The D11 will deliver 2.2 percent better economy and the D13 will offer 2.5 percent improvement.
D13 Turbo gains horsepower for the long haul
A turbo compounded version of Volvo's D13 has a second turbocharger linked via fluid coupling and a geartrain to the crankshaft, gaining as much as 50 hp and 4 percent in fuel economy, for a total of 6.5 percent over the current D13, officials said. It’s designed for long-hauling at steady highway speeds.
A compact One Box exhaust aftertreatment system is 12 inches shorter than the current system, freeing frame space, and its diesel particulate filter will be easier to service.
Products will be phased in starting this October and extending into mid 2017, Long said.