Engine, driver alert system among Volvo truck updates

  • 24-Jun-2008 07:28 EDT
New Volvo D11 Engine.jpg
Volvo will offer the D11 11-L engine in the revised FM heavy truck. Variants are already in use with Renault and Mack trucks.

Volvo has revised its FH and FM series heavy trucks, introducing a new 11.0-L engine to the low-height FM model and a number of modifications to the cab. Volvo has pursued a similar design for all its heavy-truck engines in recent years, and the new engine, designated D11B, follows those principles.

Developed from the Volvo 9.0-L D9 engine, the D11B is an inline six-cylinder design with a single one-piece cylinder head. Its 10.8-L displacement is derived from a cylinder bore of 123 mm (4.84 in) and stroke of 152 mm (5.98 in). The overhead camshaft operates four valves per cylinder and the centrally positioned electronic unit injectors (EUI). Induction is by a single variable-geometry turbocharger and intercooler, and the engine runs with a compression ratio of 18.3:1.

The new engine is offered in two power ratings. The lower-powered variant produces 390 hp (287 kW) at 1800-1900 rpm and 1880 N·m (1387 lb·ft) between 1100 and 1400 rpm. The more powerful version produces 430 hp (316 kW) at 1800-1900 rpm and 2100 N·m (1549 lb·ft) between 1100 and 1300 rpm. Volvo has set oil change intervals at up to 100,000 km (62,000 mi) or once a year.

Like Volvo’s 9.0- and 13.0-L diesels, the D11B can be fitted with the Volvo Engine Brake that provides up to 354 hp (264 kW) of braking power. Volvo offers the D11B certificated to Euro-IV emissions standards with selective catalytic reduction (SCR).

The D11B is described as a Volvo Group engine. Variants of it are already in use by Renault and Mack trucks in the U.S. Renault variants are badged DXi11 and supplied with common-rail injection, while the Mack variant is badged MP7 and uses EUI, with enhanced exhaust gas recirculation for emissions control.

For vehicle operators on weight-sensitive operations, a D11B-equipped FM has a mass around 140 kg (310 lb) less than an equivalent model fitted with the 13.0-L D13 engine.

The D11B engine will be available with the Volvo FM chassis in tractor, 4x2, and 6x2 pusher configurations. The FM with D11B will be supplied with Volvo’s I-Shift twelve-speed automated gearbox. The transmission is a twelve-speed range-change and splitter gearbox with computer-controlled clutch and gear selection.

Volvo claims to be the first European truck manufacturer to launch a system to alert the driver if he or she loses concentration. Driver Alert Support monitors steering wheel and pedal movements and, using an onboard computer, compares these with the vehicle’s position relative to lane markings, monitored from a video camera mounted on the windscreen. If the vehicle starts to weave, the system will sound an alert for the driver and flash a warning on the instrument panel.

The system is offered as an option when the Lane Keeping Support system is specified. Lane Keeping Support uses the video monitoring system only to monitor the vehicle’s position in lane.

Inside, both the FH and FM cabs have been modified to provide more space and comfort for drivers. In Globetrotter and Globetrotter LXL cabs, there is more standing headroom than before. The LXL cab option is new for the FM range and provides 150 mm (5.9 in) more standing headroom than the existing FM Globetrotter cab. The space above the windshield now incorporates four storage spaces and six DIN standard recesses.

Volvo has provided more storage space below the lower berth too, and given access to the external side lockers from inside. Two drawers of 60 and 40 L capacity are included beneath the lower bunk.

For vehicles fitted with the Powertronic automatic or I-Shift automated transmissions, the selector control has been moved slightly further from the driver’s seat to provide more space around the driver. Among the options is a lower bunk with adjustable backrest, giving a reclining position as well as the conventional flat bunk. A swiveling passenger seat is another option.

Among convenience options are rain-sensing windshield wipers, a first for a European truck, according to Volvo.

The redesigned instrument cluster includes a black-on-white LCD display incorporating an AdBlue level indicator for vehicles equipped with SCR engines. The instrument panel has been reshaped to provide more storage space, while a USB connector and auxiliary socket for the audio system has also been added.

Three new audio systems are available with power outputs up to 400 W. Both 12- and 24-V power sockets are now incorporated in the dashboard. Volvo has also provided adjustable interior lighting, which includes a dimmer to vary the light level according to working or resting needs.

Exterior changes include an optional cornering light function, switched on automatically when the indicators are activated on that side, or when the steering wheel is turned and the headlamps are switched on. The headlamps have also been redesigned, separating the headlights and driving lights. Bi-xenon headlights are an option. LED lamps are now used for the direction indicators.

The front panel and grille have been modified to increase airflow through the grille. The hinged upper grille panel is now a steel pressing.

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