HAGERSTOWN, Md. — Mack Trucks and Volvo Trucks, both companies within the Volvo Group, said Wednesday that assembly of the two OEMs’ automated manual transmissions would begin at the companies’ Hagerstown powertrain plant in the third quarter of 2012.
Mack introduced its mDRIVE transmission in the first quarter of 2010, and quickly sold out of the 500 units available last year, company officials said.
The mDRIVE is designed and engineered to work exclusively with MACK MP series engines, and is available on MACK Pinnacle model highway tractors.
Volvo’s I-Shift transmission was introduced in the North American market in 2007, and last year reached a penetration of 26 percent of Volvo Trucks’ North American sales.
Mack officials said the mDRIVE transmission gives customers up to 1.5 percent improved fuel efficiency, better drivability and enhanced driver satisfaction by automating gear shifting, while improving safety.
In addition to these benefits, optional features like Easy Shift support Mack’s reputation for application excellence by providing especially smooth shifting in specialized segments like liquid bulk hauling and fuel delivery, they said.
Volvo officials said customers continue to report significant fuel economy improvements from I-Shift, and because it is only available with a Volvo engine, the transmission is helping to promote the company’s integrated powertrain approach.
I-Shift incorporates a host of fuel-saving and productivity-enhancing features into a reliable, durable, and lightweight design.
An investment of approximately $7 million will be made in the Hagerstown plant to create a new assembly line, install the necessary equipment and train personnel.
The transmissions are currently assembled in Sweden, which is home to the Volvo Group.
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