Dana Holding Corporation introduced the latest additions to the company’s family of Spicer E-Series steer axles during the 2014 Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky. These axles deliver best-in-class performance and durability with up to 35 pounds less weight.
Available in the first half of 2015, these steer axles feature a steel-forged beam design that reduces axle weight while still delivering the strength and torsional stiffness needed for superior vehicle braking response. The axles are targeted for on-highway, city delivery, and bus chassis applications with gross axle weight ratings from 10,000 to 13,200 pounds.
This new steer axle system is the latest in a lineup of robust Spicer technologies that reduce weight and improve vehicle performance, enabling original-equipment manufacturers to offset the added weight associated with important technologies such as new fuel-efficient engines, diesel particulate filters, and urea injection systems. The benefits of the new Spicer E-Series Steer enable OEMs to further maximize chassis weight distribution and may also allow fleets to forego the higher rated, more expensive tires needed to support heavier front steer axles.
“Fleets today are looking for innovations across the entire vehicle to reduce weight, fuel costs, and maintenance, but they will not allow safety, productivity, and durability to be sacrificed in the process,” said Pat D’Eramo, president of Dana Commercial Vehicle Driveline Technologies. “We have applied our global engineering resources to deliver new Spicer E-Series steer axles that support the highest levels of performance, offering fleets weight savings that increase efficiency and reduce the total cost of ownership.”
The new lightweight steer axles build on patented, market-leading advancements already offered by Spicer E-Series axles, such as a larger diameter king pin, two-drawkey king pin retention, compressible king pin inserts, and tie rod end sealing. These features work together to enhance durability, reduce maintenance, and improve alignment capability.
Dana also announced that the Spicer EconoTrek 6x2 tandem axle is now available on 2014 Peterbilt and Kenworth commercial vehicles. The Spicer new 6x2 tandem axle reduces vehicle weight by up to 400 pounds when compared with a traditional 40,000-pound 6x4 tandem axle arrangement, and it offers numerous innovations for reducing maintenance and increasing the fuel economy of heavy-duty linehaul tractors from 2% to 3%.
“Growing numbers of North American fleets are recognizing the gains in fuel efficiency they can achieve by spec’ing 6x2 axles for select applications,” said D’Eramo. “The Spicer EconoTrek 6x2 tandem axle reinforces Dana’s reputation as a single source for a wide range of drivetrain solutions, each engineered to meet and exceed specific requirements of individual fleets over the long run.”
The Spicer EconoTrek tandem axle supports the use of wide-based single tires on standard track axles with two-inch outset wheels. When specifying the tandem axle with single-wide aluminum wheels, fleets can realize an additional 400-pound weight savings versus dual tires with steel wheels.
Later this year, Dana will release a SelecTTrac option that provides maximum gross axle weight capability for fleets that spec 0- to 0.56-inch outset wheels for wide-based single tires.
The Spicer EconoTrek tandem axle is optimized for use with electronic-controlled air suspension systems, such as the new Bendix eTrac system. ♦
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