Trucking journalists present Cummins X12 with tech award

John G Smith
Krista Toenjes, Cummins’ North American manager of on-highway sales and marketing, accepts this year’s Technical Achievement Award from Jim Park, chairman of the truck writers committee that determines the annual honor. 

ATLANTA, Ga. – Trucking industry journalists from around North American have presented the Cummins X12 diesel engine with the annual Jim Winsor Memorial Technical Achievement Award.

“As in previous years, there were a number of very worthy candidates nominated by members of our awards committee, and debate was lively,” said award committee chairman Jim Park, who writes for Heavy Duty Trucking and Today’s Trucking magazines. “But in our voting, the X12 emerged as the top product from a final field of four.”

The 11.8-liter X12’s dry weight is 2,050 lb., 150 to 400 lb. less than 11- to 13-liter competitors, yet it makes up to 500 horsepower and 1,700 lb-ft of torque, according to Cummins. Innovative engineering trimmed weight from the cylinder block but maintained the required strength. Its advanced combustion design and effective air and fuel handling promises high efficiency.

At 2,050 lb., the Cummins 11.8-liter X12 is lightweight but powerful, with up to 500 horsepower and 1,700 lb-ft of torque.

The runners up were the Peterson Pulse electronic system for trailers, Stemco’s automatically deploying Trailer Tail, and the Stemco-Webb Trifecta wheel hub.

The X12 went into North American production and became available to customers in 2018, which made it eligible for the latest Technical Achievement Award. The engine is now an option from Autocar, Freightliner and Western Star.

The honor is presented during the annual meeting of the American Trucking Associations’ Technology and Maintenance Council.

Cummins, the industry’s sole independent engine manufacturer, won the award twice before, in 2017 for its X15 Efficiency Series diesel, and in 1998 for its Signature 600 diesel. In 2007, Cummins Filtration earned the award for its Fleetguard User Friendly filters.

The Truck Writers of North America, predecessor to today’s Award Committee, gave the first Technical Achievement Award to Grote Industries for its red LED marker lamp, a technology that has become standard on trucks and trailers and across the automotive world.

Two years ago, the committee named the award after the late Jim Winsor, a 50-year veteran of the trucking trade press. He served as editor-in-chief at Commercial Carrier Journal and executive editor at Heavy Duty Trucking, and was active in TMC.

Canadian judges on the award committee include Park, Truck News editor James Menzies, and Today’s Trucking editor John G. Smith.

Past Technical Achievement Award winners include:

2018 – Hyllion 6x4HE electric auxiliary axle

2017 – Cummins X15 Efficiency Series diesel

2016 – Eaton Procision Dual-Clutch automatic transmission

2015 – Aperia Technologies’ Halo Tire Inflator

2014 – Mack Twin-Y suspension

2013 – Meritor FuelLite 6×2 tandem

2012 – Volvo XE powertrain

2011 – Bose Ride System

2010 – ArvinMeritor PlatinumShield brake shoes

2009 – Detroit Diesel DD15 engine with turbo compounding

2008 – Michelin Durable Technologies tire

2007 – Cummins Filtration Fleetguard User Friendly filters

2006 – Carrier Transicold Deltek Hybrid Reefer

2005 – ConMet TruTurn brake drum

2004 – Meritor-Wabco anti-rollover system

2003 – Bendix XVision night vision system

2002 – XM Satellite Radio

2001 – ZF Meritor Freedom Line two-pedal automated transmission

2000 – Donaldson Silent Partner muffler

1998 – Cummins Signature 600 diesel

1998 – Eaton Fuller AutoShift transmission

1997 – Rockwell Automotive ESS (Engine Synchro Shift) transmission

1996 – Navistar International 9800 flat-floor cabover

1995 – Caterpillar and Navistar HEUI (hydraulically activated, electronically controlled unit injectors)

1994 – Goodyear G300 tire

1993 – Cummins ESP variable torque engine line

1992 – Grote Industries LED marker lamp



John G Smith

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

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