NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Faster axle ratios and the industry’s lightest-weight trailer axle were among the new products Meritor showcased at the Technology & Maintenance Council meetings.
Its MTec6 trailer axle is 36 lbs lighter than the industry-standard five-inch trailer axle, Meritor claims. It features a six-inch diameter but through the more efficient use of materials, weight was taken out of the design.
“We applied Meritor’s advanced product development and manufacturing technologies, combined with a century of experience building axles, to develop the market’s lightest trailer axle,” said Martha Remski, general manager, trailer for Meritor. “The MTec6will save fuel, expand payload capacity and increase tire life.”
The lightweight axle reduces gross trailer weight so fleets can save fuel or add payload. The MTec6 also features greater stiffness and reduces axle deflection, the company says.
“Our MTec6 is designed to help fleets get the most from their van and refrigerated applications by achieving a higher level of efficiency and reduced maintenance costs,” Remski said. “Using our engineering expertise in axle design, we developed a larger-diameter axle with reduced wall thickness while improving basic physical properties, resulting in a lighter, high-strength product.”
Also debuting at TMC was a new version of Meritor’s 6×2 FueLite axle, dubbed FueLite+.
Available in March, the new axle offers fast ratios of 2.31 and 2.47 in 6×2 applications, with more ratios to be added later, Meritor announced.
About 15-20 lbs of weight were removed from the design compared to the original FueLite and it now can handle a higher gross combination weight of up to 140,000 lbs. The FueLite+ also offers an application of automatic differential lock capability at higher speeds, enabling greater traction.
Meritor also announced availability of a faster 2.28 ratio for its 14X 6×4 tandem drive axle, beginning in August. It can be paired with Meritor’s new RPL35 and RPL35SD drivelines to handle the additional torque generated by downspeeding.
“With FueLite+ and the new super-fast ratio for our 14X portfolio, truck operators can achieve that fuel-economy ‘sweet spot’ through downspeeding,” said Karl Mayer, director, product strategy for Meritor. “While the 14X was designed to handle higher torques, Meritor fortified the already strong design by enlarging the pinion system to handle the extreme torque levels associated with downspeeding.”
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