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Yup, they stuffed M-Drive in the Granite!


TeamsterGrrrl
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Typical Volvo, omitting specs. No where in the press release does it mention the torque rating. It's a secret? (http://www.macktrucks.com/community/mack-news/2015/mack-mdrive-hd-to-be-available-and-standard-in-the-mack-granite/)

Volvo has offered the 2,600 and 3,180 N.m torque rated models in the US market. This "HD" model probably is the 3,550 N.m rated overdrive ATO3512D (http://productinfo.vtc.volvo.se/files/pdf/hi/ATO3512D_Eng_01_1194137.pdf).

"Mack Trucks today unveiled a heavy-duty version of its game-changing Mack® mDRIVE™ automated manual transmission"

At this juncture, most American customers know it's a Volvo I-Shift. So what's the point of continuing the charade? "Mack Trucks", which no longer exists, hasn't introduced a "game-changing" anything. Volvo should man up and call a spade a spade. It's time they stopped insulting the intellect of US customers and began badging it as the Volvo I-Shift that it is.

You're right in that Volvo doesn't want you to repair this yourself (unlike Eaton and ZF). This transmission is purposely engineered so that you will be forced to swap it out for an expensive Volvo reman.

Both Eaton and ZF's AMT transmissions are already rated for vocational applications. No special "HD" model is required.

Speaking of AMTs, German heavy truck transmission maker ZF in addition to Eaton believes that two countershafts are preferable to one. I couldn't agree more.

An introduction to twin countershaft ZF "AS Tronic" automated manual transmissions:

Note ZF's planetary design range section, and integrally fitted proprietary "Intarder" hydraulic retarder.

An introduction to twin countershaft Eaton UltraShift Plus vocational-spec automated manual transmissions:

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The only thing that was keeping it out of the Granite was an agreement with Allison. Some of the engineers at the assembly plant were talking about this move, but this a lot earlier than they were talking about. And if you think this transmission is bad, just wait until you see the new redesign of the Granite.

You're 100 percent right.

One new single countershaft AMT transmission I like a great deal for vocational applications is the Mercedes-Benz AMT mounted behind the Voith Turbo Retarder Clutch (http://www.bigmacktrucks.com/index.php?/topic/37872-the-game-changer-new-voith-turbo-retarder-clutch/?hl=voith). It borders on across-the-board perfection.

Of course Scania's range of modularly design transmissions are engineered with the same high performance and durability indicative of Mack's legendary Maxitorque transmissions. Like ZF, they incorporate a planetary type range section.

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Multiple countershaft transmissions like Eaton's and the Maxitorques typically go a million miles or so before rebuild in highway use. So far most of the Volvo Automated Manual Transmissions (AMTs) in North America haven't been around long enough to cover that many miles, though I've heard of some that have covered a half million miles without major repairs. The Volvo AMTs have been out longer in Europe, but mileages are lower there so I've heard of a few making it to the million kilometer mark, I haven't heard of any making it to a million miles. Given that big trucks in Europe tend to get sold off to third world markets by that million kilometer mark, if there's an unrebuilt million mile Volvo AMT anywhere, it's probably in the third world... Or more likely the AMT has been replaced by a manual or the truck scrapped. I have heard reports from Australia of Volvo AMTs needing rebuilds around that half million mile mark though, which does not bode well.

None the less, some Volvo AMTs may make it a million miles without rebuild, provided Volvo's application guidelines are strictly followed, with the truck pulling moderate loads on level Interstates. With the AMT spending most of it's time in direct drive, the weaker single countershaft and it's bearings don't get loaded that much. And of course, I'd love to see Volvo show us an unrebuilt million mile AMT that's seen real world use and make me eat my words... I am a Volvo shareholder, after all!

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The only thing that was keeping it out of the Granite was an agreement with Allison. Some of the engineers at the assembly plant were talking about this move, but this a lot earlier than they were talking about. And if you think this transmission is bad, just wait until you see the new redesign of the Granite.

how ugly did they make it?
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Matt

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I drive an I-shift Volvo for work and enjoy the ride all day. I too am wondering how it can handle the torque with a single countershaft. Best I can figure is with integrated drive line and computer control, torque can be limited and applied virtually eliminating shock load. Brothers Auto Transport has mostly standardized on the I-shift due to the fact that DRIVERS (or should I say NON-DRIVERS) create most clutch/transmission failures.

Just my 2 cents

Gregg

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After i was told by my doctor in 2013 i could get my CDL Back after Loosing them in 2007 due to health problems . Now that i have my health back & loosing 150lbs , the State of TN Said that id have to have an automatic Due to the Ceberal Palsy In my left side . So i fought them the 1st time back in the mid 90's when i 1st got my Class B & proved to them i could drive a Duplex, triplex & quadbox . matter fact i took my test in the 77'DM Mack dump we had @ the time w/ 237 & 2 stick 6spd . But this time im thinking of letting them have thier way as a Auto would be eaiser on me due to how my left side likes to lock up a little more esp during the cold winter months . I Just hope they dont totally restrict me to an Auto .

Now days i help a couple of buddies cut grass & do quite a bit of landscape work. I Still haul recaps for my buddies in the tire business some (that helps keep my sanity of being around a truck ) but the lawncare & staying in the gym helps keep me in shape & helps keep my CP a Little more limber & my body doesnt get as tight as when i was in the operators & drivers seat all the time .

I'm wanting to go out on my own either this year or next w/ my own lawn care service & start off w/ a few small yards But a few years after that id like to have a small single axle dump to go w/ the lawn service & haul the small loads of dirt, sand, mulch, pro mix, & gravel. i would buy a small dump w/ a manual But in my case & the long run due to my left side im getting where i perfer a automatic in everything i drive even my personal rides .

:mack1:

You Cant Fix Stupid. But You Can Numb It With A Sledgehammer. :loldude:

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After i was told by my doctor in 2013 i could get my CDL Back after Loosing them in 2007 due to health problems . Now that i have my health back & loosing 150lbs , the State of TN Said that id have to have an automatic Due to the Ceberal Palsy In my left side . So i fought them the 1st time back in the mid 90's when i 1st got my Class B & proved to them i could drive a Duplex, triplex & quadbox . matter fact i took my test in the 77'DM Mack dump we had @ the time w/ 237 & 2 stick 6spd . But this time im thinking of letting them have thier way as a Auto would be eaiser on me due to how my left side likes to lock up a little more esp during the cold winter months . I Just hope they dont totally restrict me to an Auto .

Now days i help a couple of buddies cut grass & do quite a bit of landscape work. I Still haul recaps for my buddies in the tire business some (that helps keep my sanity of being around a truck ) but the lawncare & staying in the gym helps keep me in shape & helps keep my CP a Little more limber & my body doesnt get as tight as when i was in the operators & drivers seat all the time .

I'm wanting to go out on my own either this year or next w/ my own lawn care service & start off w/ a few small yards But a few years after that id like to have a small single axle dump to go w/ the lawn service & haul the small loads of dirt, sand, mulch, pro mix, & gravel. i would buy a small dump w/ a manual But in my case & the long run due to my left side im getting where i perfer a automatic in everything i drive even my personal rides .

:mack1:

The physical activity definitely helps, Bulldog man. That's the part about my job that I enjoy the most. Moving around the truck loading and unloading cars plus the walking involved to fetch cars keeps me in shape and I've lost 30 pounds since I started this job 3 years ago I feel better than I did 25 years ago. But after four stops on Long Island yesterday that automatic sure feels nice coming back across the Cross Bronx Expressway makes for an easy ride home after a long day.

Gregg

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I'll agree, for urban trucking an automatic is the way to go, and automatics open up opportunities in trucking to a whole bunch of people with disabilities. But not this automatic- Eaton's has a much longer track record and is based on their bullet proof twin countershaft designs, Allison's AMT is a twin countershaft design with a torque converter, and I wish ZF's were available here. And for really tough urban and off road trucking, the traditional Allison is the way to go.

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The Volvo AMT has only been out for a few years now so it really hasn't had a full test yet. In a few years we could be looking at thousands of Macks scrapped with far less than a million miles on them because their Volvo AMTs failed and it would cost more money to fix them than they're worth,

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Volvo built a handful in 2001 before putting it on sale in the global market in 2002 (ex. US). And they introduced it in the US market for the 2008 model year.

We sometimes assume that a market launch means immediate high volume sales, e.g. Ford's new F-150. But that's not the case here. It took years for sales to grow in Europe, and they were problematic for many years. In many markets where second-hand Volvos are sold, they still yank out the ishift and install a ZF.

In the US, the ishift (and rebadged mDrive) sold poorly for years. Only now are they seeing volume sales (frankly because Volvo is now pushing it so hard).

In my humble opinion, ZF's AMT is probably the best, with the Eaton a close second but a tad lower in purchase cost. And again, for a single countershaft AMT, the Benz AMT/Voith clutch-retarder is worth a hard look in the vocational segment.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The M Drive or I Shift may be great on highway even though when there is a problem with them you can't repair them they are replaced or so says two Mack dealers service managers I have talked with. I just dont like the automated manual with an electrically, air or centrifically actuated clutch for vocational work because there is a clutch that you as the driver cannot control engagement with. On highway when you use the clutch to start and stop its not really a big issue, however try to keep a dump truck slow for milling work and its in and out in and out. With a conventional clutch you can slip it just a little to ease forward or a least ease it into and out of engagement. The perfect version of the vocational truck uses a torque converter, you just use the accelerator and if it moves a little to fast, left foot brake to keep it where you want it. Allison has the vocational transmission figured out and in my humble opinion you will never match a torque converter equipped true automatic trans with an automated manual for vocational work. That being said the automated manual is the way to go for the on highway "truck drivers" that seem hell bent on destroying clutches and drivetrains whenever possible. There's my two cents.

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