Eaton unveils Fuller UltraShift 10-speed transmission

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. Eaton Corp. has come to market with the Eaton Fuller UltraShift 10-speed, a fully automated heavy-duty truck transmission that provides two-pedal operation.

The UltraShift 10-speed is based on the Eaton Fuller 10-speed "B" ratio transmission and is offered in four torque capacities from 1,050 lbs. ft. to 1,650 lbs. ft. The UltraShift 10-speed is currently in its "LQR" phase (limited quantity release), with an initial production quantity of 1,000 over the next 12 months.

Full production begins in the spring of 2004.

UltraShift 10-speed key features include:

— An automatic start with no clutch pedal that helps to reduce drivetrain abuse.

— Automatic shifting that permits the driver to keep both hands on the steering wheel.

— Computer-controlled shifts, made at ideal engine speeds for improved efficiency and

— "Skip-shifting" provided as operating and load conditions allow, for optimum performance and fuel efficiency.

— A patented automated mechanical Eaton Fuller "DM AutoClutch" that uses a 15 inch, two-plate design with industry-standard ceramic facing material.

— A high capacity inertia brake that speeds automated up-shifts, and serves as a clutch brake.

— Clutch-less "float shifting" between gears, eliminating hundreds of clutch actuations per day and providing extended clutch life.

The UltraShift 10-speed allows drivers to use the transmission in full automatic mode or with manual intervention, depending on conditions or driver preference. A Manual mode holds the current gear and allows driver-selected up-shifts or down-shifts. The Low mode feature can be used in any gear to prevent the transmission from up-shifting, and initiates downshifts to optimize engine braking performance. Low mode can also be used to select first gear at a standstill, and will hold in low until drive mode is selected.

"The UltraShift 10-speed provides all the benefits of a 2-pedal automated transmission, while staying true to its roots," says Gerard DeVito, heavy-duty transmission product planning manager for Eaton.

DeVito said the UltraShift 10-speed has been in extensive testing for more than two years with many millions of miles of road and lab testing. "The AutoClutch has a combined 30 million miles of road testing and accelerated lab testing in the last two years, and the high-capacity inertia brake has 16 million similar testing miles under its belt," said DeVito.

Over 40,000 AutoShift transmissions have been sold in the North American fleets in the last five years, and those trucks have logged more than 10 billion miles of experience.

Jim Sweetnam, senior vice president for Eaton’s Truck Components group, keynoted the transmission’s launch at the Mid-America Trucking Show with an assurance to the industry that the new transmission would meet an as-yet unmet need for reliable 2-pedal automation designed specifically for the North American market.

For more information, visit the Internet at

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