Today's Trucking


Combined Savings: LCVs vs. platooning

March 2, 2018 by Jim Park

TORONTO, Ont. — Pulling two trailers with just a single power unit is an efficient way of moving freight. It’s not quite two-for-the-price-of-one, but fuel and labor costs are lower on a per-trailer basis even if equipment acquisition and operating costs are similar.


Sponsored Fuel-efficient owner-operators benefit from in-cab coaching

February 20, 2018 by John Smith

If you talk the talk, you have to walk the walk.” Those words from three-truck owner-operator Jamie Hagen are one of his motivations for using the PedalCoach in-cab coaching system. No one would criticize Hagen’s fuel economy – he’s established a reputation for pushing his Mack Pinnacle to the brink of 10 mpg. However, even experienced drivers can benefit from telematics that provide real-time driving advice, and Hagen isn’t too proud to admit it.


Top 10 of 17 — Paccar’s 12-speed automated transmission

December 19, 2017 by John Smith

Paccar updated its MX-11 and MX-13 engines this year, shedding weight and extending oil drains in the process. But it was the company’s automated transmission – developed through the new Eaton-Cummins Automated Transmission Technologies – that garnered the most attention during recent product launches.


Fuel-saving, safety training should be refreshed: study

November 1, 2017 by John Smith

MONTREAL, QC – A recent study by PIT Group has found that training in fuel efficiency and safety are only effective when it includes refresher courses, while real-time in-vehicle technologies help to reinforce good practices.

“While vehicle technology designed to improve fuel economy continues to advance, driver training is the element that has the largest impact on fuel consumption,” says Yves Provencher, director – market and business development. “Our studies show that various ways to train drivers – including classroom, in-cab and simulator training – all have their advantages.”


New oils a ‘brand new ballgame’

October 27, 2017 by John Smith

MISSISSAUGA, ON – New oil categories are delivering longer drain intervals and added protection for engine components, but few fleets appear to be embracing the most fuel-efficient formulas of all, Petro-Canada Lubricants reports.


Past has a role in Volvo’s vision

September 29, 2017 by John Smith

ATLANTA, GA – Keith Brandis, Volvo’s director – product planning, says the road toward improved connectivity, electro-mobility, and automation also involves looking at the way trucks with older technology operate in developing nations – and exploring how trucks have become the major or only supplier of goods in eight out of 10 communities.


Daimler testing platooning in U.S.

September 25, 2017 by John Smith

ATLANTA, GA – Daimler Trucks North America is testing platooning systems on test tracks and select highways, further exploring technologies to enhance fuel economy. Tightly spaced pairs of trucks are now running in controlled trips along Oregon and Nevada highways. […]


Starship Initiative to launch in 2018

September 23, 2017 by John Smith

SANTA BARBARA, CA – Shell is on a mission to explore fuel economy improvements that might be realized in decades to come. And some of the ideas are now taking physical shape in the form of a prototype tractor-trailer known as the Starship Initiative.


Fuel-efficient oil from Shell

September 21, 2017 by John Smith

Shell’s new Rotella T5 Ultra 10W30 synthetic blend has been unveiled, meeting the recently introduced FA-4 oil category and improving fuel economy when compared to a conventional 15W40.


New engine oil categories making the grade

September 21, 2017 by John Smith

SANTA BARBARA, CA – A new generation of engine oils is in the North American market, passing a battery of tests developed for specific engine brands. But the work of convincing buyers about related features and benefits continues.
The transition from CJ-4 to CK-4 and fuel-efficient FA-4 categories has essentially been seamless, says Dan Arcy, Shell Lubricants’ global OEM technical manager, referring to formulas that were officially released in December. The chemistry was driven by ongoing calls for longer drain intervals, better fuel economy, lower emissions, and increasing horsepower, after all.
And these are hardly the engine oils that have flowed through pumps in years gone by.
Oxidation stability had to improve to handle higher under-hood temperatures. When oil oxidizes, it becomes acidic and thickens, Arcy explained during a media briefing in California this week. At the very least, that shortens potential oil drain intervals.


Paccar’s proprietary 12-speed transmission

August 24, 2017 by John Smith

MT VERNON, WA – Paccar has unveiled a 12-speed automated transmission, rounding out a proprietary powertrain with the promise of better fuel economy and smoother shifts along the way.
Developed over three years in a partnership with Eaton, the transmission will be released into the market this October.
“The Paccar automated transmission is engineered to work seamlessly with Paccar MX engines and Paccar axles,” says Landon Sproull, Paccar vice president. It will support linehaul applications with Gross Vehicle Weights up to 110,000 pounds, and engines delivering up to 510 horsepower and 1,850 lb-ft of torque. The first units will be an option with MX-13 engines.


Saskatchewan association continues carbon tax fight

August 14, 2017 by John Smith

REGINA, SK – Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall is retiring from politics, but the Saskatchewan Trucking Association is continuing his fight against carbon pricing – and also recommending steps that should be followed if such a tax becomes a reality.

“We have supported the provincial government’s stance on a carbon tax since the beginning, and that has not changed,” said Susan Ewart, executive director, when releasing a related white paper on Friday. “The actions the federal government is planning on taking for backstop jurisdictions are not trucking-friendly and place an unfair burden on industry. Proper policy planning will prevent those actions.”

According to the association, a carbon tax would create an administrative burden, give U.S. carriers operating in Canada a competitive advantage, create budgeting challenges for trucking companies, and create inequalities between different transportation modes because of exemptions for marine and aviation.


Quebec platooning tests underway

August 9, 2017 by John Smith

MONTREAL, QC – PIT Group, the research and engineering arm of FPInnovations, is in the midst of Transport Canada’s truck platooning tests that run from July 24 to August 18 at the Motor Vehicle Test Center in Blainville, Quebec.


IN PRINT — The Downspeeding Decision: Can it work with Canadian spec’s?

May 9, 2017 by John Smith

Spec’ing powertrains for Canadian operations is a tricky job. Americans take their powertrain spec’s pretty seriously as well, but how tough is it to get something that will move 80,000-pound loads on interstate highways? To be fair, our southern neighbors are always pushing the proverbial envelope, but tricky takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to downspeeding.


Vnomics’ True Fuel Part One: Bad Jim

April 17, 2017 by John Smith

PITTSFORD, NY — Since you can’t physically sit beside your drivers all day, observing and coaching their driving habits and performance, some sort of monitoring tool can be quite useful. However, if drivers see such devices as annoying or impeding their ability to drive the truck, they won’t happily accept the intrusion.