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Slippery Western Star

Posted: October 30, 2014

Labelled “the newest fuel-efficient on-highway truck in North America,” the Western Star 5700XE goes for fuel efficiency with style in its aerodynamically angular look, and its standard-equipment Detroit DT12 automated transmission can be mated to any of the Detroit engines offered.

‘XE’ stands for extreme efficiency, by the way.

The all-new 5700XE features a 126-in. BBC with a set-back axle, and is available in a range of sleeper configurations. It sports a corrosion-resistant ‘galvannealed’ lightweight steel cab.

All-new aerodynamic features such as the hood and roof with chassis and cab fairings reduce drag and increase efficiency, the company says. A new sweptback four-piece bumper with an under-bumper valance also contribute, and new halogen headlights are optimized for aerodynamic performance. The “state of the art” visor is specifically engineered to work with the slope in the hood’s rear air ramp to direct air flow over the cab without adding drag. Optional chassis side fairings reduce drag by up to 6% while still providing easy access to batteries and DEF tank.

The 5700XE can be spec’d with the Detroit DD15 engine as well as the DD16 with up to 600 hp and also the DD13 engine for regional hauls and weight-conscious customers.

The truck comes standard with the Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission that can be mated to any of the Detroit engines offered.

Buyers can select the new integrated Detroit Powertrain. That includes the new downsped DD15 engine rated at 400 hp and 1750 lb ft of torque, the DT12 transmission with Intelligent Powertrain Management, and Detroit axles with specific configurations and gearing, all of them engineered to work together.

Features include three Meritor WABCO advanced safety systems: OnLane lane-departure warning; adaptive cruise control that will automatically adjust vehicle speed to maintain a safe distance from vehicles ahead; and OnGuard collision mitigation with active braking, a radar-based system that provides visual and audible driver alerts if a rear-end collision seems likely. If the driver doesn’t take action, it automatically de-throttles the engine and activates the service brakes.

The 5700XE is also equipped with the proprietary Detroit Virtual Technician remote diagnostic service, which is part of the Detroit Connect suite of integrated telematics solutions. It also includes, as options, Visibility fleet software and the forthcoming on-board tablet.

Full production will begin in 2015.

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