Detroit updates engine, expands transmission lineup

Detroit DD15 Gen 5Detroit Diesel on Tuesday announced enhancements its Detroit DD15 engine and expanded its lineup for the Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission. The company says the updates will benefit Freightliner Cascadia customers with better fuel economy, performance and durability.

Detroit says its DD15 Gen 5 engine has been completely updated and engineered to deliver the efficiency the market expects and is a perfect complement to the Cascadia. It will be available with January 2021 truck builds. The company says Gen 5 advances the legacy of Detroit’s heavy-duty engine platform (HDEP), the most popular Class 8 heavy-duty engine platform sold in North America for the past five years, according to data from IHS Markit.

Additionally, the DT12 transmission has evolved into the DT12 On-Highway Series to offer three purpose-built options to meet the unique needs of various on-highway applications, all of which are now available to order. Engineered with extreme fuel efficiency and performance in mind, Detroit says the all-new DT12-HE debuts with enhanced features and robust capability.

“The addition of the DD15 Gen 5 and DT12 On-Highway Series to the Detroit portfolio is sure to add to the momentum we have built by delivering the most robust and fuel-efficient powertrain on the market,” says Kelly Gedert, vice-president, On-highway market development, Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA). “With a rich heritage of innovative engineering, world-class manufacturing facilities, and access to a global toolkit of cutting-edge technologies, our customers demand Detroit solutions because they are the best in the industry.”

With nearly 50 percent new componentry for the DD15 and fine-tuning by the global team of Detroit engineers, Detroit says the DD15 Gen 5 brings up to a three percent improvement in fuel efficiency from propulsion alone. As an additional benefit of more efficient operation, the engine also stands to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Detroit DT12 transmissionA new ball bearing simple geometry turbocharger also reduces friction and allows peak power and torque to be reached faster in the Cascadia. Peak horsepower is reached at lower engine RPMs of 1500 RPM versus the prior generation’s 1625 RPM, and peak torque is achieved at 900 RPM versus a previously rated 1075 RPM. Detroit adds modified inlet ports in engine cylinders and a new piston bowl shape combine to create a swirl effect that creates a fuel spray pattern for better atomization. Along with an ultra-high compression ratio, the new swirl design piston makes combustion cleaner and more efficient than the previous generation of the DD15, the company says.

The durability of many key engine components also is improved thanks to reduced design complexity and increased robustness. A new EPA GHG21-compliant aftertreatment system for the DD15 Gen 5 debuts a smaller unit design to reduce weight by more than 60 pounds while increasing nitrous oxide conversion and, dependent on duty cycle, allowing increased diesel particulate filter service intervals, the company says.

Regarding the DT12, Detroit says the DT12-HE transmission is an all-new DT12 option unleashing ultimate performance, capability and efficiency. Customer adoption is growing for downspeeding with faster rear axles ratios to achieve maximum powertrain fuel efficiency. In answer to this increasing demand, Detroit says the revolutionary transmission boasts higher overall ratios for improved downspeeding and an improved oil system design, both contributing to increased efficiency. The DT12-HE debuts with Cascadia production beginning in early 2021 and additional model applications will be announced soon.

Also included in the DT12 On-Highway Series, is the DT12-HL transmission, a lightweight carry-over option offering comparable efficiency and durability to the rest of the portfolio and intended for weight-sensitive applications. Lastly, the DT12-H, a revised designation for the stalwart of the portfolio, retains the same venerable characteristics that have made the DT12 a favorite of fleets small and large. Both the DT12-H and DT12-HL are currently available for order in Cascadia builds, the company says.

Finally, the company adds a fully integrated powertrain from Detroit enables a complete technologically- and data-driven experience to asset operation. Full Detroit integration offers customers the chance to benefit from the connectivity and analytics of Detroit Connect’s suite of connected vehicle services, including Virtual Technician to translate fault event codes into actionable intelligence and increased uptime, Remote Updates to optimize vehicle performance with over-the-air programming and analytics tools to glean greater insight to efficiency gains, the company says.

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