Daimler Trucks’ powertrain component brand Detroit celebrated the production commencement of their Automated Manual Transmission (AMT), the DT12. With the launch on November 20th, the company is delivering on the commitment made during President Obama’s visit to the Redford facility in December 2012.
The Detroit Powertrain provides integration like only Detroit can, because the engine, transmission, and axles are all engineered and designed to work together as one. The Detroit Powertrain integrates the DD15 engine , with the technologically advanced DT12 transmission and specifically designed Detroit tandem axles.
The new Detroit DT12 combines the operational ease of an automatic with the efficiency of a manual transmission, resulting in enhanced fuel economy, vehicle performance and safety. The addition of the Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission and related assembly represented a capital investment of $100 million and resulted in the addition of 170 new jobs.
Available in the Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 5700 XE, the DT12 maximizes fuel efficiency for line-haul/long haul operations. Adding to the transmission’s overall economy is its lightweight design, which offers additional payload because of its aluminum housing and single counter shaft.
The DT12 improves slow-speed maneuvering capabilities without compromising high road speed efficiency. The 12-speed, direct- or over-drive automated manual transmission combines a traditional manual gearbox with high-speed, computer-controlled shift and clutch actuators that automatically and seamlessly select the right shift pattern and perfect clutch engagement for fuel economy and engine power. The DT12’s creep mode simulates a torque converter to improve low speed maneuverability for parking, docking, heavy traffic and other low speed situations.
Advanced technologies include Skip Shift, which automatically skips gears, enabling the transmission to run through lower gears faster to achieve cruising speed sooner; and eCoast, which allows the vehicle to ‘coast’ down grades with the engine operating at idle speeds while preserving vehicle momentum, maximizing fuel efficiency.
A proprietary control module communicates with the entire powertrain, giving the transmission and engine the ability to share information and offer complementary functions, which gives the Detroit transmission an advantage that only a proprietary powertrain can provide. For example, the engine can limit torque to protect against driveline damage and harsh shifts, while the transmission can optimize shifts to keep the engine in the sweet spot.
Drivers will also appreciate comfort features such as helical gears and geometrical optimized gear-cut for noise reduction; pneumatic clutch and shift actuation for faster gear shifts; and a choice between eco or power-mode configuration. Additional advantages for the driver include a true two-pedal system for ease of operation, and a kick-down feature that improves vehicle acceleration when needed.
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