Daimler Trucks North America and Walmart Showcase New Technologies on Cascadia

The Class 8 truck features advanced aerodynamic and predictive technologies.

Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) and Walmart unveiled the latest innovations for the Freightliner Cascadia at the 2011 American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exhibition. Built as a technology truck and based on Walmart advanced fuel-efficient specs, the Class 8 truck features the industry’s most advanced aerodynamic and predictive technologies.  

Since launching the project in late 2010, DTNA engineers and Walmart experts have worked closely together to create an environmentally-friendly and fuel efficient heavy-duty commercial vehicle, with many of the featured options now in production and available to DTNA’s over-the-road customers.

“Together with Walmart, we have closely evaluated new technologies that will further enhance the Cascadia’s power and fuel efficiency,” says Wilfried Achenbach, senior vice president, engineering and technology for Daimler Trucks North America. “As industry leaders, DTNA understands it is our responsibility to help shape future transportation through technology and innovation. The advancements we’ve made thus far are just the beginning.”

“Walmart is pleased to partner with Daimler Trucks North America and play a key role in shaping the design and technology that will propel the industry forward,” says Elizabeth Fretheim, Walmart director of logistics sustainability. “The technologies on this truck give us the tools we need to continue our leadership role in improving the sustainability of transportation and ultimately our fleet.”

To further enhance efficiency, the 72-in. raised roof Detroit Diesel DD15-equipped Cascadia is outfitted with DTNA’s proprietary Run Smart Predictive Cruise system, which evaluates upcoming road profiles more than one mile in advance and determines the most fuel efficient vehicle speed; Eaton UltraShift PLUS transmission with Hill Start Aid; and Meritor Wabco’s OnGuardCollision Safety System with Adaptive Cruise Control and Active Braking. Combined, these systems will maximize fuel efficiency, driver productivity and vehicle safety.

The Cascadia has been enhanced with next-generation chassis side fairings and side extenders to maximize aerodynamics. Additional components focused on increasing efficiency and productivity include:

  • A low solar-gain windshield to better insulate the cab;
  • A viscously coupled fan drive;
  • Eco driver feedback, which visually displays fuel economy feedback based on real-time conditions of the vehicle; 
  • Predictive torque management, which alters engine torque based on the vehicle’s operating conditions; 
  • Flexible service system, which determines when maintenance is required based on driving conditions of vehicle, not pre-set mileage intervals; and
  • The Lectronix T7000 infotainment system, which provides GPS navigation, radio, iPod connectivity, Bluetooth®and onboard vehicle diagnostics, all on an ergonomically located LCD display. 

“By combining all of these technologies into one vehicle, we are providing the industry a glimpse of what’s to come from DTNA,” says Mark Lampert, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Daimler Trucks North America. “With the EPA’s 2014-2018 greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency emissions standards on the horizon, this collaboration with Walmart will ensure that we are prepared to provide the best products to both meet these standards and exceed our customers’ expectations.”