Eaton Roadranger

SmartAdvantage Powertrain package available for Volvo VNLs

Power management company Eaton has announced that Volvo Trucks will offer the SmartAdvantage Powertrain in all VNL Series models in order to maximize fuel efficiency in line haul and regional haul applications.

In addition to lighter weight and increasing the driver pool with smooth, automated shifting, “this powertrain is designed to enhance the time spent in a diesel engine’s most efficient rpm zone helping to reduce fuel consumption,” says Tim Sinden, Eaton’s president of North American truck operations.

“Partnering with North American truck manufacturers to deliver integrated powertrain solutions is a key part of Eaton’s strategy,” he says “Eaton has a long history of providing our fleet customers with enhanced, optimized powertrain choices, and we believe this new offering for Volvo’s VNL Series will be well received by the marketplace and professional drivers.”

The powertrain

The SmartAdvantage Powertrain for Volvo combines a Fuller Advantage Series Automated Transmission with the Cummins ISX15 diesel engine with SmartTorque2 engine ratings that enable “smarter acceleration and performance” under a variety of operating conditions.

Delivering fuel economy improvements between 3 and 6 percent, more than 80 customers have taken delivery of trucks with the SmartAdvantage Powertrain or have orders pending, with many confirming that their expectations in fuel economy improvements have been met or exceeded under real-world operating conditions, Sinden notes.

“Volvo Trucks is continuously looking for fuel efficient solutions for our customers,” said Wade Long, director of product marketing at Volvo Trucks. “The SmartAdvantage is one opportunity in the Volvo product offering to allow customers to downspeed. “Downspeeding provides additional fuel savings for every 100 rpm we can reduce engine speed.”


Transmission features

A new Precision Lubrication system represents one of the most important upgrades in the Fuller Advantage Series, says Eaton’s Sinden. The system reduces the oil churn energy losses found in traditional transmissions by nearly 33 percent.

With less heat being generated, the Fuller Advantage Series transmissions do not require a cooler and corresponding lines and fittings. The result is that less preventative maintenance is required, plus engine fans cycle less, further reducing horsepower demand.

In addition, small-step technology enables downspeeding in overdrive and efficiency in direct drive. Optimized shifting is based on grade, vehicle weight, engine torque and throttle position.

Significant weight savings – up to 82 pounds with no sacrifice to strength – has also been achieved with the new Fuller Advantage Series transmissions. A thin-wall cast-iron main case design is complemented by the strategic use of aluminum for the shift bar housing, auxiliary section cover and range cylinder.

All Fuller Advantage Series transmissions have a standard warranty of five years/750,000 miles. The Advantage Series clutch is warranted for three years/350,000 miles.

Extended protection plans are also available.

Additional features

Other features of the Fuller Advantage Series Automated Transmission include:

- Error-free, automated shifting due to the use of an Electronic Clutch Actuator (ECA) which offers “unprecedented performance,” including gradeability and low-speed maneuverability.

-  Auto Neutral automatically switches into neutral once the parking brake is engaged to prevent potential movement.

­- Hill Start Aid prevents roll back or roll forward. When a grade exceeds 3 percent, foundation brakes hold truck for up to three seconds for a controlled launch.

- Extended oil drain interval of 500,000 miles before the first scheduled transmission oil drain service for linehaul applications rated at 80,000 lbs or less.

-  Oil level sight glass for reduced preventative maintenance downtime.

- Standard eight- and six-bolt power takeoff openings.

- Ten forward speeds and two reverse.

- Capabilities: gross combination weight ratings up to 80,000 lbs; 110,000 lbs pending.

- Torque capacities from 1,150 to 1,850 ft/lbs.

All Eaton products are backed by the Roadranger network, which includes more than 200 drivetrain professionals throughout North America.