With its modular transmission system TraXon for heavy trucks, ZF Friedrichshafen AG scooped the European Transport Award for Sustainability 2014 in the Commercial Vehicle Components category. An expert jury awarded the product innovation top marks in the assessment criteria “Economy”, “Environment”, and “Social Responsibility”. The award was presented to ZF by the Transport trade magazine on the evening of November 19, 2013 in Munich.
“Our new TraXon modular transmission system is sustainable in the best sense. It helps make heavy commercial vehicles environmentally friendlier, more economical, quieter, and more comfortable at the same time,” says Winfried Gründler, Head of the Truck and Van Driveline Technology business unit at ZF. “But we are also especially delighted with the European Transport Award for Sustainability because the competition’s criteria not only take on a central role in ZF’s products, but in ZF’s entire business ethos.”
An independent seven-strong expert jury including representatives from business, science, trade associations, and the media assessed the submitted innovations from three aspects: In the “Economy” criterion, the decisive factor was the extent to which the product simplifies the work and business processes or technical workflows in the transport sector and helps cut costs. The “Environment” aspect considered to what extent the innovation helps improve the eco-balance – compared with the predecessor product and other solutions in the market. And with “Social Responsibility” those products did well that conserve resources as well as further optimize environmental protection and conditions within the workplace. TraXon received the top marks from the experts in all the assessment criteria – thus making it the clear winner in its category.
The core element of the automatic ZF-TraXon transmission system is a compact basic transmission which was designed for torques of heavy trucks of up to 3 500 newton meters and is the benchmark in terms of its spread of gear ratios and power-to-weight ratio. The modular kit concept ensures ultimate flexibility. The basic transmission can not only be combined with a dry clutch, but also with other starting elements, for example with a dual-clutch module or a hybrid module with powerful 120 kilowatts. Both technologies will be available for the first time in the heavy commercial vehicle segment.
ZF specially developed the PreVision GPS shift strategy for the new transmission. By using GPS data and digital map material, the transmission control unit responds in an anticipatory manner while saving fuel: The system avoids unnecessary gear changes in relation to the respective topography.