Volvo Trucks is the first truck manufacturer in the world to
offer automatic engagement of all wheel drive on construction trucks. The
Automatic Traction Control function activates the front wheel drive when the
rear wheels lose traction on slippery or soft ground.
“Many drivers connect front-wheel drive or differential lock
in good time before a difficult section of terrain, in order to avoid getting
stuck. Volvo Automatic Traction Control engages the front wheel drive when in
motion, and only for the short time that it is really needed,” says Jonas
Odermalm, Construction Segment Manager at Volvo Trucks.
According to a press note, Volvo Automatic Traction Control,
which has now become standard in the Volvo FMX with driven front axle, is
already used by Volvo Construction Equipment in their articulated haulers.
The solution consists of software connected to the wheel
speed sensors which detect and control wheel drive. When a rear wheel starts to
slip, the power moves automatically to the front wheels without the truck
losing torque or speed. A dog clutch activates the front-wheel drive in just
half a second. The clutch is lighter and has fewer moving parts than a
traditional solution with permanent all-wheel drive. If the driver encounters
particularly rough ground, then it is possible to manually lock the other
differentials at both front and rear.
The drive on the front axle prevents standstills on slippery
surfaces. At the same time, the function is often only required for a very
small part of the total driving time. With Automatic Traction Control, the
front tyres’ grip is concentrated on the steering right up until any critical
situation. Thus, the driver can take advantage of the better manoeuvrability for
as long as possible.
The driver also avoids extra fuel consumption and wear on
the driveline and tyres, that the constant engagement of front-wheel drive
normally results in. Automatic Traction Control ensures that the optimal drive
combination is always enabled and removes the decision from the driver.
“Automatic Traction Control is yet another example of how
innovative technology can make things easier and smarter than before. Just like
the Volvo I-Shift revolutionised the gearbox, we are confident that this new
development will do the same for the driven front axle,” says Ricard Fritz,
Vice President, Volvo Trucks Brand.
Automatic Traction Control is standard on the Volvo FMX in
versions 4*4, 6*6, as well as 8*6 and is offered with the complete engine program
for Euro standards 3, 4, 5 and 6.
Source: Volvo Trucks
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