Detroit-brand axles are now available to order for Freightliner, Western Star, and Freightliner Custom Chassis vehicles, as well as Thomas Built buses, from Daimler Trucks North America. It's a complete line covering every trucking segment, including steer axles and both single- and tandem-drive rears.
Produced at the same Michigan facility as Detroit’s engines, the axles are compatible with all braking systems offered on DTNA trucks.
The steer-axle lineup offers ratings from 6000 to 20,000 lb, including a unique 12,500-lb rating. Featuring a "weight-optimized" I-beam, Detroit’s steer axles are claimed to be up to 40 lb lighter than competitors.
Detroit’s steer axles have an interesting needle-bearing design that's said to reduce wear and tighten tolerances, resulting in better performance and less maintenance, while friction and thrust bearings reduce chatter and enhance steerability, DTNA says. The I-beam design and steering layout result in a wheel cut of up to 55 degrees.
With no pinion-head bearing, Detroit’s tandem axles are said to feature more space for a larger and stronger differential. The offset design with above-center rear-axle pinion position improves driveline angles, the company says, reducing vibrations and increasing durability. Additional benefits include an oil deflector which ensures full lubrication of the power divider at very low speeds, eliminating the need for an expensive oil pump; an input seal inside the bearing cage and separated from the threaded ring for improved sealing; and a larger power divider for improved stability and reliability. Optional driver-controlled or automatic diff locks are available.
Detroit tandem axles are available from 34,000 to 46,000 lb, including an intermediate-track 40,000-lb alternative for easy switching between wide-based single and dual tires.
Single rear axles are available in weight ratings from 13,000 to 23,000 lb, with precision-machined gear sets, resulting in enhanced efficiency, higher torque applications, and quieter operations, says Detroit. Designed with fewer parts and a larger differential, they should offer improved durability.
A "comprehensive" warranty is joined by Detroit's carrier exchange program which enables dealers to exchange carriers or upgrade axles on trucks post-build.