Cummins, Eaton collaborate on new powertrain package

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Updated Mar 13, 2013
The new powertrain package combining the ISX15 with unique SmartTorque2 ratings and Eaton’s Advantage Series automated transmissionThe new powertrain package combining the ISX15 with unique SmartTorque2 ratings and Eaton’s Advantage Series automated transmission

Eaton and Cummins unveiled a new powertrain package for the North American linehaul and regional haul truckload and LTL markets that could deliver 3-6 percent fuel-economy improvements over comparable Cummins/Eaton engine-transmission pairings long available. Speaking to press at the American Trucking Associations’ Technology and Maintenance Council annual meeting in Nashville, Tenn., reps from both companies detailed the package, which through various custom enhancements and optimized design will enable significant “downspeeding” of rpms at highway cruise speeds, a crucial element of is significant fuel savings.

In addition, said the companies, reduced preventive maintenance costs and total life-cycle cost improvements would be achieved.

The package will be available for order from most truck OEMs in the fall of 2013.

The new product integrates the Cummins ISX15 — in 415- and 450-hp versions — with the Eaton Fuller Advantage Series automated transmission. â€śThe collaboration between the Eaton and Cummins teams has resulted in a superior powertrain package with which both fleet owners and professional drivers will be thrilled,” said Eaton Vehicle Group President for North American Truck Operations Tim Sinden. “The level of integration between this transmission and engine is best in class in the North American heavy duty truck market.”

Brand-new SmartTorque2 ratings build on the SmartTorque ratings now available for the Cummins ISX15 and ISX12. The ISX15 415 ST2 will output peak torque of 1,450-1,650 lb.-ft. and the ISX15 450 ST2 1,550-1,750 lb.-ft. “The SmartTorque system helps the driver to stay in this sweet spot, varing the torque to match the load demand,” said Lori Thompson, Cummins vice president for truck and bus OEMs.

Likewise, Cummins has patented the new Vehicle Acceleration Management (VAM) feature to  manage power output during vehicle acceleration for smoother shifting. The feature contributes to fuel economy benefits in stop and go duty cycles found in regional haul applications.

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The Advantage Series automated transmission will be offered as a small ratio step overdrive model as part of the package. A primary enhancement to the transmission is the elimination of the cooler, which helps to reduce the overall package weight and improve reliability. Combined with the use of aluminum for the rear transmission housing, range cylinder, shift bar housing and the shift tower – along with a thin-wall, cast-iron main case design – the new transmission weighs 75 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.

Other benefits include:

  • Integrated power, fuel and shifting strategies to provide fuel economy improvement for linehaul and regional haul applications.
  • Optimized engine and transmission communications and new control logic enable further engine downspeeding in the overdrive position, with direct drive technology used to good effect here for an efficient blend.

“Both Cummins’ and Eaton’s sales organizations will be promoting the product, and “we’re working with all the OEMs to ensure availability,” said Thompson. “It will be supported by Eaton RoadRanger and Cummins dealer and distributor networks.”