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Freightliner Shows Detroit DD8 Engine in a Heavy Vocational Truck

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Heavy Duty Trucking (HDT)  /  January 23, 2018

Freightliner Trucks is displaying the new Detroit DD8 diesel in a vocational model at the World of Concrete show in Las Vegas this week. The midrange-size engine is an alternative to the Cummins L9 and will be offered in the 108SD, such as the one at the show, as well as the 106SD and 114SD.

The DD8, with ratings of 260 to 350 hp and 660 to 1,050 pound-feet, will be an alternative to Cummins’ L9, representatives said. The 7.7-liter DD8 is a larger, six-cylinder version of the four-cylinder DD5 introduced in 2016.

Cummins’ L9 is an 8.9-liter diesel that has long been popular with weight-sensitive applications, especially concrete mixer chassis.

“The DD8 engine combines the durability and efficiency expected from Detroit with the features best suited for vocational applications,” said Kelly Gedert, director of product marketing for Freightliner Trucks and Detroit Components.“As highlighted in in our World of Concrete booth, the DD8 is part of our overall strategy for having the right solution for any job.”

The DD8 claims best-in-class maintenance intervals and is available with the engine and transmission power-take-off options needed for vocational applications, he saidThe DD8 display at World of Concrete includes Detroit’s variable cam-phasing for efficient aftertreatment performance.

The engine is installed in the Freightliner 108SD set-back axle chassis with a ProAll volumetric mixer truck.Like the L9, the DD8 weighs hundreds of pounds less than larger-bore diesels, adding to a truck’s payload. The DD* will be priced similar to the L9, representatives said.The display truck’s transmission is an Allison 3000 RDS automatic, a midrange series unit that costs considerably less than 4000 series Allisons required for larger, higher-output engines.

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DTNA Unveils DD8 Engine for Medium-Duty Lineup

Transport Topics  /  February 6, 2018

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Daimler Trucks North America announced the addition of the Detroit DD8 diesel engine to its medium-duty lineup.

The 7.7-liter engine, which has been available in Europe for five years but is just now arriving in North America, features technology designed to reduce diesel particulate filter maintenance. It will initially be available in Freightliner M2 106, 108 SD and 114 SD models, DTNA product manager Brian Daniels told reporters here Feb. 6.

The North American introduction of the engine comes after a $375 million investment DTNA made specifically to tailor the DD8 to the NAFTA region, said Kelly Gedert, director of product marketing for Freightliner Trucks and Detroit Components.

“We have a really strong commitment to ensuring this product will be a success here, and meet our customer’s needs,” she said. “Dealers and customers have been asking for a medium-duty solution for years.” She noted, however, that Freightliner will continue to offer Cummins’ medium-duty B67 and L9 engines.

A key feature of the DD8 is the engine’s variable exhaust cam phasing, which increases exhaust temperatures to reduce manual DPF regenerations, the company said. The DD8 also will offer power takeoff capability. In addition, every DD8 for North America will come equipped standard with Daimler’s Virtual Technician remote diagnostics system; every new engine will get the service included for three years or 250,000 miles, which matches the engine’s standard warranty period.

Daimler also will offer Wabco collision mitigation and Bendix lane-departure warning systems on DD8-equipped trucks.

To provide flexibility for upfits, two exhaust aftertreatment systems will be offered in DD8-equipped trucks: a horizontal n-line system, or an understep setup.

The five years that the DD8 has been available in Europe has given Daimler time to identify and address maintenance issues, Gedert noted. “This is a proven product for us,” she said.

For the NAFTA market, the engine has undergone 31,000 hours of bench testing and has logged 1.9 million miles in 15 test vehicles, the company said.

Power ratings will range from 260 horsepower and 660 pound-feet of torque with a single-stage turbo to 375 hp/1,050 lb-ft with a dual-stage turbo.

All North American DD8 engines will be manufactured at Detroit’s Redford, Mich.-based manufacturing facility, the same plant that produces the medium-duty DD5 engine and Detroit’s 13-liter DD13, 15-liter DD15 and 16-liter DD16 engines, as well as the DT12 automated manual transmission and Detroit-brand axles. The DD8 has been in production there since fall, and installations in trucks began on Feb. 4, Gedert said.

She said in the fourth quarter of this year Daimler will relaunch the DD5 to broaden its applications.

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Detroit's New DD8 Diesel Engine Completes Medium-Duty Power Offerings

Heavy Duty Trucking (HDT)  /  February 6, 2018

WEST PALM BEACH, FL – The long-awaited Detroit DD8 diesel engine this week entered into serial production in Redford, Michigan, and also was unveiled to Daimler Trucks North America customers and journalists at a race track outside of West Palm Beach, Florida.

The new engine is designed to be a low-maintenance, higher torque and higher horsepower option for fleets such as construction, dump, mixer, plow, fire and rescue and other tough duty applications. The engine joins Detroit’s previously released DD5 diesel engine, which is designed for urban applications such as last mile and P&D. According to Kelly Gerdert, director of product marketing, Freightliner and Detroit Components, the engine marks the end of a $375 million investment made by Daimler to round out its medium-duty diesel portfolio in North America.

The engine isn’t technically new, however. Gerdert noted Daimler leveraged all of its global engineering design assets in developing the engine, including input from the company’s European and Asian business units. The DD8 first debuted in Europe in 2015, which means it has five years’ of real-world driving miles behind it, Gerdert added. Other than a few tweaks to meet certain North American regulatory standards or customer preferences, the engine is largely the same as the ones running in Europe today.

Beginning this week, the Detroit DD8 can be spec’d for Freightliner M2 106, 108SD and 114SD truck models.

The DD8 is an inline, 6-cylinder 7.7L diesel offered in two basic configurations: a single-stage turbocharged version designed for maximum fuel economy, and a dual-stage turbo version that delivers higher horsepower and torque. Power ratings from the engine range from 260 to 375 hp, with engine torque ranging from 660 to 1,050 lb-ft of torque. And, according to Brian Daniels, manager, Detroit Powertrain and Component Product Marketing, it has a B10 life of 400,000 miles, which means engineers predict that 90% of the engines sold will make it to that mileage point before failure. He noted that the DD8’s 3 year/250,000 mile warranty reflects the engine’s robust design and longevity in tough trucking applications.

“The DD8 is built for performance with features that meet the needs of those specialized segments,” Daniels said. “Additionally, a big differentiator for the Detroit brand is the Detroit Connect Virtual Technician remote diagnostics system, which is available as standard on both the DD5 and DD8 engines. Virtual Technician helps fleets make informed service decisions within minutes of an engine or aftertreatment fault event, increasing uptime.”

Around Town with Detroit’s New DD8                                                

I was given the opportunity to drive several medium-duty Freightliner trucks equipped with the new DD8 engine, both on a closed course and in heavy city traffic, to see for myself how the new design handles itself on the road.

Popping the hood on a Freightliner M2, a quick once-over confirmed several points from our technical briefing earlier in the day. As with its little brother DD5 engine, the DD8 is extremely easy to access for both daily checks and more in-depth maintenance work. The fuel and oil filters feature a cartridge design for fast, clean change-outs. And all routine service points have been grouped together logically and placed as low as possible on the engine to facilitate fast and easy maintenance.

Walking toward the back of the truck, I was able to check out the new aftertreatment system. Freightliner has actually designed two different aftertreatment systems, a horizontal/inline configuration that hugs the rear frame rail, and a horizontal/understep design that can be placed underneath the steps leading to the cab. The goal here, Daniels explained, was to give more options to body upfit companies and make installations easier.

Turning the key, the DD8 dutifully shuddered to life and came up to idle quickly and smoothly. One of the DD8 features designed with the vocational market in mind is variable exhaust cam phasing, used at low engine speeds to increase exhaust temperatures and increase uptime by reducing the need for manual regenerations. Daniels warned me that this feature gives off a bit of a low-end, throaty grumble at idle. But I found the rumble barely noticeable and in fact forgot about it until my passenger pointed it out while we were waiting for a traffic light to change.

What is noticeable, however, is the low volume of engine noise that does find its way up from the engine compartment into the cab. The DD8 is a remarkably quiet design at both ideal and cruise speeds.

I drove both the single- and dual-stage turbocharged versions of the engines. Both were impressive in terms of low-end power and torque. But the higher-horsepower, dual-stage turbo version is very impressive with how fast it digs in and accelerates from a dead stop. Even loaded its 30,000 pounds, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a truck fitted with one hit 50 mph on a quarter mile run. Throttle responses are crisp, with no noticeable lag time between inputs and engine response. And the engine’s exhaust brake is equally impressive, delivering steady, forceful braking power once you take your foot off the throttle. In fact, I liked the exhaust brake quite a bit, as it started out with smooth, measured braking force that gradually increased as the truck’s forward motion slowed, without any harsh jerking or jarring that you sometimes get with aggressive engine brakes.

Daimler says customer interest in the new engine is high, and it’s easy to understand why. The new DD8 will be a welcome addition to Freightliner medium-duty fleets that need a bit more power to get their work done quickly and efficiently.

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