LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Eaton has enhanced its automated transmissions to save more fuel, by disengaging the driveline when the truck is on a slight downhill grade and dropping engine speed to idle.
Eaton claims doing so improves fuel economy by up to 1%. Neutral Coast Mode is being added to Eaton’s full line of Fuller Advantage Series and UltraShift Plus automated manual transmissions. Each of the OEMs to offer it has applied its own branding: SmartCoast with Cummins; Fuel Efficient Coast with Navistar; and Neutral Coast with Paccar.
“This new option promises to bring fuel efficiency improvements to linehaul fleets typically traveling on roads where hills and grades are present,” said RyanTrzybinski, product planning manager, Eaton. “The gains will vary depending on the amount and severity of grades encountered.”
The transmission exits Neutral Coast Mode when: the brakes or accelerator are applied; cruise control is cancelled; a mode other than Drive has been selected; cruise high or low set speeds are exceeded; maximum vehicle grade is exceeded; or there’s a request from the adaptive cruise system.
Eaton also announced at the Mid-America Trucking Show, an expansion of its Fuller Advantage Series line to include nine new offerings. Three are manual transmissions with new direct drive gear ratios, two are automated models with new direct drive gear ratios and four are automated transmissions with new overdrive ratios. All are 10-speed transmissions.
“Our customers have been asking us for additional ratio coverage in both direct drive and overdrive designs,” said Trzybinski. “All of the direct drive additions are ideally suited for a variety of linehaul applications and will be especially beneficial for regional and LTL (Less Than Truckload) customers with day cabs and 6×2 axles. The other additions are ideal for linehaul/on-highway fleets and provide better options for customers preferring axle ratios that are best suited for an overdrive transmission.”
Fuller Advantage Series transmissions feature a precision lube system and a coolerless design.
Some of these transmissions will see their gross combination weight rating increased to 110,000 lbs, up from 80,000, at the end of April.
James Menzies is editor of Truck News magazine. He has been covering the Canadian trucking industry for more than 15 years and holds a CDL. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @JamesMenzies. All posts by James Menzies