Volvo hits 100,000 I-Shift milestone in North America

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Updated Apr 8, 2016
Volvo Trucks North America delivered the 100,000th truck equipped with its I-Shift automated manual transmission to Watkins & Shepard Trucking. The truck was presented to Watkins & Shepard President Walt Ainsworth during a brief reception From left to right: Walt Ainsworth, Rick Candler, Kelly Darlington, Dwayne Hill and Rich Schenk of Watkins & Shepard; Brad Bealer of Transport Equipment; Jeff Denny and Bruce Kurtt of Volvo Trucks.Volvo Trucks North America delivered the 100,000th truck equipped with its I-Shift automated manual transmission to Watkins & Shepard Trucking. The truck was presented to Watkins & Shepard President Walt Ainsworth during a brief reception From left to right: Walt Ainsworth, Rick Candler, Kelly Darlington, Dwayne Hill and Rich Schenk of Watkins & Shepard; Brad Bealer of Transport Equipment; Jeff Denny and Bruce Kurtt of Volvo Trucks.

Volvo Trucks North America recently presented its 100,000th I-Shift automated manual transmission (AMT) equipped truck – a Volvo VNL 670 – to Watkins & Shepard Trucking.

To date, Volvo says it has sold more than 575,000 I-Shifts globally. In 2007, Volvo introduced the I-Shift in North America, becoming the first truck OEM to bring an integrated AMT to the market.

Volvo made the I-Shift standard on all Volvo-powered models in 2013 and in 2015, I-Shift penetration in North America reached a record 83 percent.

“When we first introduced the I-Shift, many said that it would not be successful in this market,” says Göran Nyberg, president, Volvo Trucks North America. “Yet thanks to the significant efficiency, performance and productivity benefits the I-Shift delivers to our customers, we’re celebrating the delivery of the 100,000th I-Shift-equipped truck.”

In addition to the efficiency and productivity gains, Watkins & Shepard President Walt Ainsworth says his LTL freight management, distribution, consolidation and warehousing company has found the I-Shift makes it easier to hire, train and retain drivers.

Driver Rick Candler was selected by Watkins & Shepard CEO Ray Kuntz and Ainsworth to receive the VNL 670 model, in part due to his nearly 28 years of service with the company. The truck was customized with Candler’s name on the driver’s door, a hand-painted decal recognizing its significance and a one-of-a-kind custom silver shifter.