Volvo launches over-the-air updates

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Updates typically take about 20 minutes.

Volvo Trucks North America has announced it has commenced over-the-air remote updates for engine software and parameter updates.

The company has updated 1,300 trucks since last June, and is in a controlled roll-out phase.

Volvo estimates its remote updates have already eliminated more than 600 days of downtime. The average update has taken 20 minutes, and so far, half are overseen by the driver while half are performed by fleet maintenance personnel. Remote updates are available for the powertrain, including the engine, aftertreatment system, and I-Shift transmission.

Customers are notified by a Volvo rep when an update is available. They schedule the update and then notify the driver when it’s to occur. The driver parks the truck with the key in the on position, and then allows the update to be completed. Cellular coverage is required.

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John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking,, TruckTech, Transport Routier, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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