During a special event at its U.S. assembly plant this week in Dublin, Va., Volvo Trucks North America (VTNA) took the wraps off of its completely redesigned long-haul VNL series line of long-haul highway tractors.
Four sleeper cab configurations are being rolled out as well, with a brand new 70-in. sleeper configuration available for Volvo VNL 760 and 740 models.
“While we wanted the new VNL to make a statement on the road, we knew that it also had to make a statement to our customers’ bottom lines,” Wade Long, VTNA’s director of product marketing said during the event. “Whether it’s the sleek new bodywork that improves aerodynamics, or the new three-piece bumper that aids in repairability, every design change we’ve made has a purpose.”
On the outside, that new aerodynamic shaping includes “swept-back” light emitting diode (LED) headlamps with daytime running lights plus what the OEM calls a “bold” new grille and hood design.
Redesigned and repositioned engine air intakes allow for less turbulent intake air delivery, while airflow up and around the cab is improved via new chassis and roof fairings, the company noted.
Under the hood, the VNL series comes standard with the 13-liter Volvo D13 engine, while daycab and VNL 400 models can be spec’d with the 11-liter Volvo D11 as an option. The 15-liter Cummins X15 is also available as option in the VNL series, VTNA added.
On top of that, the VNL can also be equipped with the Volvo D13 Turbo Compound (D13 TC) engine that taps a mechanical waste heat recovery system to capture wasted energy from the engine’s exhaust stack. The result is an additional 50 horsepower fed back to the crankshaft along with an improvement in fuel efficiency of up to 6.5%, the OEM said.
The entire VNL series will now come standard with Volvo’s I-Shift automated manual transmission (AMT), and when combined with the Volvo’s D13 TC engine, the OEM said its new VNL tractor can deliver up to a 7.5% increase in fuel efficiency when compared to a 2015 VNL model equipped with a GHG 2014 D13 engine.
Other new features include:
- An optional infotainment system is available, featuring a seven-inch color touchscreen, navigation and an exterior back-up camera.
- Volvo’s smart steering wheel, attached to its “Perfect Position” air-assisted, which provides an “infinitely adjustable” steering column. That enables drivers not only to tilt and telescope the steering column, but also tilt the steering wheel relative to the steering column.
- The addition of “Globetrotter” trim levels, available for the first time on the VNL 760 and VNL 860 sleeper models. They include a full aerodynamic package, polished wheels, high-end seating, as well as a refrigerator, inverter and parking cooler package.
- Volvo Active Driver Assist by Bendix, now standard on all VNL models, which combines a camera and radar-based system to provide forward collision mitigation warnings and active braking.
- Volvo Enhanced Stability Technology, an electronic stability control system, is also now standard equipment on all VNL models.
- All VNL models also come standard with Volvo Remote Diagnostics, Volvo’s factory-installed telematics hardware that provides connectivity for proactive diagnostics and monitoring of critical engine, transmission and aftertreatment trouble codes. The same hardware also allows customers to perform powertrain software and parameter updates over-the-air with Remote Programming.