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Eaton, Cummins announce SmartAdvantage portfolio expansion

Over 80 customers have taken delivery of trucks with the SmartAdvantage ISX15 package or have orders pending, with many confirming that their expectations in fuel economy improvements have been met or exceeded under real-world operating conditions.

The Trucker News Services

3/11/2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Power management company Eaton, along with Cummins Inc. announced that its SmartAdvantage Powertrain package is being expanded to include applications for the ISX12 diesel engine and ISX15 SmartAdvantage applications up to 110,000 lb gross vehicle weight (GVW). The product, which initially integrated an Eaton Fuller Advantage Series Automated Transmission with the Cummins ISX15 engine, has been embraced by customers since its launch last year, while receiving industry accolades as a top new product, company officials said.

Speaking March 10 at a media event at the American Trucking Associations’ annual Technology & Maintenance Council meeting, executives from both companies said that the product announcement is a continuation of the long-standing collaboration between Eaton and Cummins, and builds upon the announcement one year ago of the SmartAdvantage Powertrain for the ISX15 engine.

Over 80 customers have taken delivery of trucks with the SmartAdvantage ISX15 package or have orders pending, with many confirming that their expectations in fuel economy improvements have been met or exceeded under real-world operating conditions.

“Cummins and Eaton continue to collaborate on powertrain solutions for the North American on-highway markets that we serve,” said Lori Thompson, Cummins vice president, truck and bus OEM business. “The latest SmartAdvantage Powertrain offerings are a natural extension of the initial product, and will provide customers with the fuel economy and productivity improvements they desire, along with a broad range of applications to meet their specific hauling needs.”

“The level of integration and advanced technology in the SmartAdvantage Powertrain delivers a package that both fleet owners and professional drivers are thrilled with,” said John Beering, senior vice president and general manager, commercial vehicle transmission business, Eaton. “Our teams continue to receive feedback from our customers and, in turn, deliver the kind of integration between the transmission and engine that is best-in-class in the North American heavy-duty truck market.”

SmartAdvantage ISX12

Designed to meet the increasing demands of fleets seeking lighter-weight vehicles, the new SmartAdvantage offering will pair the Eaton Fuller Advantage Series 10-speed Automated Manual Transmission with the Cummins ISX12 diesel engine. It will be offered as a small-ratio-step overdrive model with two new Cummins ISX12 SmartTorque2 (ST2) ratings: the ISX12 370ST2, with torque of 1150 lb-ft to 1450 lb-ft (1559-1966 N•m), and the ISX12 425ST2, with torque of 1350 lb-ft to 1650 lb-ft (1830-2237 N•m).

Through a combination of hardware and software enhancements, the powertrain package benefits include:

• Integrated power, fuel and shifting strategies to provide an estimated 2 percent to 4 percent fuel economy improvement for regional haul applications;

• Optimized engine and transmission communications and new control logic, enabling further engine down speeding in the overdrive position and the effective use of direct-drive technology in operational conditions required for a blend of perfect efficiency.

Eaton’s Fuller Advantage Series transmissions have lower overall package weight and improved reliability due to the elimination of the cooler. Combined with the use of aluminum for the rear transmission housing, range cylinder, shift bar housing and the shift tower — and a thin-wall cast-iron main case design — the new transmission weighs 82 pounds less than Eaton’s UltraShift PLUS LAS base model. A new Precision Lubrication system for precise and efficient transmission lubrication further enhances fuel economy by reducing churning losses, officials said.

The new engine and transmission combination has been designed to maximize fuel economy benefits. Cummins new ISX12 ST2 ratings are the next generation of today’s SmartTorque ratings, and precisely manage the power needed for the load demand. Vehicle Acceleration Management (VAM) is a patented Cummins electronic feature that manages vehicle acceleration for smoother shifting. The feature contributes to fuel economy benefits in stop-and-go duty cycles found in regional haul applications.

This newest SmartAdvantage powertrain package will be available in the fall of 2014, and is currently undergoing field testing, with initial test results confirming a two percent to four percent fuel economy improvement, depending on duty cycle and application.

Eaton and Cummins continue to collaborate on expanded offerings to cover more market segments, including the ISX15 SmartAdvantage in operations over 110,000 lb GVW for customers seeking to maximize driver comfort and productivity in their operation. The joint validation of the products is being conducted with planned release later in 2014.

More information on the SmartAdvantage Powertrain can be found at smartadvantagepowertrain.com.

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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