Freightliner has unveiled the newest truck in its Cascadia line, which will be available in 2017. The Cascadia features an updated design, including standard enhancements such as an upper door seal, elliptical-shaped mirrors, sloped hood, bumper with integrated air deflector and integrated antennas all minimize drag. The optional Aero and AeroX packages provide additional aerodynamic benefits to manage airflow, including longer side extenders, lower chassis fairings, drive wheel covers and proprietary-designed wheel fairings.
The new Cascadia is available with the integrated Detroit powertrain, which combines either the Detroit DD15 or Detroit DD13 engines with the Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission, Intelligent Powertrain Management (IPM4) and corresponding Detroit steer and rear tandem axles. The new Detroit rear axles have features such as lower sump volume, gear-set coating, friction reducing gear cutting and optional Axle Lubrication Management that reduces parasitic loss and improves fuel economy. The new DT12 has also been updated to improve fuel efficiency and reduce friction by using super-finished gears and use of low viscosity transmission oil. It also features the latest generation of intelligent powertrain management (IPM4), which uses a GPS-based system to anticipate upcoming road terrain and maximize the powertrain’s ability to utilize fuel most effectively.
The interior of the new Cascadia also features several improvements ranging from the layout of the gauges and switches in the driver compartment to features inside the sleeper area, including a new Driver’s Loft configuration. Steering and handling have been improved with the driver in mind. A new front suspension provides a smoother ride and improved roll stiffness, and the steering gear is now located further forward to help improve steering precision and ultimately lead to less driver fatigue.
The ergonomically designed wraparound dashboard includes switches and steering wheel controls which allow drivers to work without leaning and stretching. In the instrument cluster, digital smart gauges and information displays keep drivers informed as they drive.
The New Cascadia’s cab is even quieter, thanks to new noise abatement technology. To further improve the truck’s interior sound level, Freightliner engineers have developed an optional insulation package using 3M Thinsulate technology. Additionally, a new engine mount design provides better vibration isolation and the engine tunnel cover is now constructed using Quiet Steel technology.
The optional Detroit Assurance 4.0 suite of safety systems includes Active Brake Assist that now provides full braking on stationary objects, Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Departure Warning with optional video capture. This proprietary safety suite includes driver-friendly controls and is seamlessly integrated into the truck’s dashboard, engine and transmission electronics and can enhance driver safety by mitigating collisions.
Detroit Assurance safety event reporting can be accessed using Detroit Connect Analytics, which will be available to customers starting in Q1 of 2017. The connectivity platform will be available at the start of production of the new Cascadia in January 2017. A five-year standard base package includes Virtual Technician, access to the new Detroit Connect portal, and later in 2017, remote updates.
Related: For a more in-depth look at the New Cascadia’s Detroit Connect offerings, click here.
The OEM explained that Freightliner master technicians inspected and rated every single component on the truck for ease of serviceability and maintenance improvement recommendations. New splayed frame rails create more room in the engine compartment to allow technicians easy access for maintenance tasks, and most electronic control units are now stored securely in the cab in the new eVault for easier convenience and protection from the elements. In front of the eVault is the fuse and relay box which is easily accessible with no hand tools needed. To increase dash component accessibility, the dash panel was designed to be easily removed. Additionally, the standard two-piece front bumper of the Cascadia can be quickly removed within two minutes.
Further enhancements to serviceability will pay uptime dividends over the life of the truck. An updated, larger, engine air filter increases airflow and requires less frequent replacement intervals. Standard, interior and exterior LED lights further add to the Cascadia’s ease of maintenance.
“We focused on the priorities identified by drivers, fleet managers and technicians,” said Richard Howard, senior vice president of Sales and Marketing for Daimler Trucks North America. “The new Cascadia was inspired by science and driven by passion, ultimately creating a new standard for on-highway vehicles.”