Daum: 10 mpg truck ‘definitely’ attainable

By Linda Longton on

daumTrucks that achieve 10 mpg fuel economy “will definitely come during our professional lifetimes,” Martin Daum, president and CEO of Daimler Trucks North America, told attendees Monday at Heavy Duty Dialogue 2013, produced by the Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association in Nashville. Daum recalled that when he discussed the feasibility of a 10 mpg truck at the 2010 Mid-America Trucking Show, “I got a hard time from our engineers,” he said. “But most were excited and said: ‘let’s go for that.’”

Recently, on a trip from San Diego to Gastonia, N.C., a fully loaded Freightliner Cascadia Evolution achieved 9.31 mpg. “That’s darn close to 10 mpg,” he said, adding that not that long ago, that same truck would have gotten 6 mpg. “That’s a major achievement.”

Looking ahead to 2013 NAFTA Class 6-8 truck sales, Daum said the industry is currently not on pace to meet last year’s 344,000 level. “To meet that number we’ll have to considerably ramp up speed through the end of the year,” he said, voicing cautious optimism that sales could be 10 percent higher than that.

“Truck makers have to be flexible,” he said. “Managing the cycle is key.”

Daimler is currently running a backlog that would sustain the 344,000-truck level. We needed to adjust production to that backlog,” he said, referring to the announcement of Daimler laying off 1,300 workers.

The actual number of layoffs, which will be announced at the Mid-America Trucking Show this month, will be less than 1,300, he said.

Linda Longton

Prior to her promotion, Linda served as Vice President of editorial for Randall-Reilly for nine years. She served as editor of Overdrive beginning in 1996 before being promoted in 1999 to Editorial Director of Trucking Media. Prior to joining Randall-Reilly, Linda worked in public relations and corporate communications at Communication Concepts Unlimited in Racine, WI. Before that, Linda spent 10 years in editorial positions with Johnson Hill Press, now Cygnus, in Fort Atkinson, WI. Linda is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

11 comments
P Shock
P Shock

I agree with Michael and S Johnson.  We run 2012/13 Cascadias with DD15 multitorque engines and average just over 6 mpg.   We have experienced drivers and a fuel incentive pay program.  I have been in the business for over 30 years and personally know of no one getting 7 or more for a fleet average.  I don't know where people are getting these numbers.   When you dig into it, the high mpg's are from trucks pulling 15,000 lbs on flat land, not 80,000 rigs running long haul.  I've also noticed that high mpg claims tend to be based on computer read-outs rather than manual calculations of actual miles driven divided by total gallons added to derive the mpg.

Michael Gully
Michael Gully

The 10 mpg sounds great.  And I hear a lot of people bragging they are getting 8 mpg plus now.  But when one gets to asking a lot of questions that is a not a quarter, half year, or year average.  It is more like some isolated trips during a month.  We have some Casadia's.  And while they have decent fuel mileage the numbers are far from 9 mpg.  MOre like 6.3 in the winter and high 6's to low 7's in the summer.

 

S Johnson
S Johnson

I find 10mpg hard to believe as our 2013 Cascadias are only getting 5.5 on the average

Jennifer Pipenger
Jennifer Pipenger

Fuel MGP efficiency of 5-7% increase is already possible with the correct treatment ratios of the 'right' additives for diesel fuel.  Imagine what results fleets could achieve with the combination of improved tech both outside AND inside the trucks.   10 MPG seems VERY achievable. 

Mark Morin IP owner worlds 1st aerodynamic mudflap
Mark Morin IP owner worlds 1st aerodynamic mudflap

Its indeed an every-bit counts world we live in. CCJ witnessed and reported the launching of the "worlds first purpose built aerodynamic mudflaps" at GATs 2001, proven to acheiv .5 -1% fuel economy gains while reducing 1 ton of C02 per truck. Having validated such tech for the last several years, Mr. Daum has evidently seen a glimpse of the future. From integrated aero headlights, mirrors and smooth skins to undertray systems and intelligent mudflaps I've every confidence his engineers will indeed rise to the occasion with every last bit of tech needed to not only meet but exceed everyone's expectations .   

Skymark
Skymark

@S Johnson What engines are you running?

Skymark
Skymark

Were always trying to get feed back from other carrires and try to give as much as we can as well. I appreciate your feed back. What company are you with if you don't mind me asking. @S Johnson

Skymark
Skymark

We have gone with the dd13's and are seeing a steady mpg at about 8.0. What speed are you governed at? @S Johnson @S

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  1. [...] Truck” prototype near 10 mpg, compared to national highway fleet average of 5 to 6 mpg. Other OEMs have reported they’re gaining on that 10 mpg target figure as well (and you don’t have to look that far to find some [...]



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