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Volvo’s I-Shift automated transmission comes to North America

SAVANNAH, Ga. -- Volvo has engineered its I-Shift automated mechanical transmission for the North American marketpl...

SAVANNAH, Ga. — Volvo has engineered its I-Shift automated mechanical transmission for the North American marketplace.

The new automated transmission will be available on model year 2007 Volvo trucks, with deliveries beginning in the second quarter of 2007. Volvo’s I-Shift is a popular option in Europe, where more than 80,000 are currently in use. It has been modified for North American applications and boasts several fuel-saving and productivity-enhancing features, the company says.

“We believe customers will immediately recognize the advantages I-Shift offers for productivity, lower cost of operation, driver recruitment and retention, and safety,” said Scott Kress, senior vice-president, sales and marketing. “The combination of I-Shift with Volvo’s new engine family gives our customers a complete vehicle and drivetrain solution. The truck, the engine and the transmission have all been engineered and designed to work as one integrated, exceptionally efficient machine. Customers can always get the perfect ratio at the right time for optimal engine and vehicle performance, which means a higher degree of productivity, fuel economy and reliability. And I-Shifts light weight means more payload per trip.”

Three I-Shift models will be available with the ability to handle all power and torque inputs available through Volvo’s new engine family. It will be able to handle GVWs of up to 110,000 lbs.

The I-Shift is a 12-speed, two-pedal transmission featuring sophisticated electronics and programming that allows the transmission to shift at the optimum RPM each time, improving fuel mileage. Unique to the I-Shift is a feature called Eco-Roll, which allows the truck to idle down hills further saving fuel with no input required from the driver. This feature allows the driver to save fuel while operating in top gear, company officials announced.

For a complete overview of the I-Shift automated transmission, including first-hand impressions as experienced by executive editor James Menzies, see the November issues of Truck News and Truck West.

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