Are you overlooking a chief component critical to vehicle performance?

Tips for spec’ing drivelines for improved vehicle performance.

Specific RPL design characteristics include a non-booted design for the slip section sealing, an integral cup-to-yoke design which simplifies and enhances that connection (which eliminates the “spinning cup”) and extends the life of the end-yoke and U-joint.


“With the never-ending quest for improved fuel economy,” says Bob Ostrander, chief engineer-drivelines, Meritor, “fleets are specifying direct drive transmissions and automated mechanical transmissions with very fast axle ratios to reduce engine rpm while maintaining desired highway speeds. The trade-off with this approach is that a lower driveline rpm must transmit considerably higher torque for the same horsepower so larger drivelines are required to handle the torque and exhibit the same life expectancy.”

Company executives explained that ongoing considerations to raise federal weight limits on trucks (up to 97,000 lbs for trucks equipped with six axles instead of the typical five), as well as to reduce overall vehicle weight, along with the rising needs of the medium duty segment, are all factors behind several new driveline initiatives it is launching.

For starters, the Meritor plans to expand its Permalube (RPL) series driveline family by adding a new model, RPL 3X, designed for trucks hauling increased gross combination weights of 97,000 lbs or more, complete with faster ratios.

The company continues to investigate different lightweight options for future drivelines, including various alternative materials and designs. Its goals include saving weight, assuring a payback and making sure to address performance, serviceability and reliability.

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