ARVINMERITOR Inc announced an all-new Meritor 14X tandem-drive axle that builds on the legacy of the RT145, one of the industry's most successful tandem axles. Unveiled during the Mid-America Trucking Show, the 14X is the first addition to ArvinMeritor's new MPG Series of products.

With an extensive engineering pedigree, the new axle was created to maximize performance and ensure efficiency for North American truck operators. It will enter production in June 2010 with planned deliveries to all major North American original equipment manufacturers.

“The 14X brings the rich heritage of its predecessor with a ‘tried and true’ design that will stand the test of time,” said Joe Plomin, vice-president, Truck products at ArvinMeritor. “It's an evolution of one of the most successful tandem-drive axles in the commercial truck industry, with nearly two million RT145s manufactured since 1985. New developments include a more robust and efficient inter-axle differential, the fastest ratio and widest range of axle ratios, and several other design enhancements while continuing to be the lightest axle in its class.”

The new 14X axle features three primary benefits:

  • More robust inter-axle differential — the strength was added to the right critical component. The inter-axle differential (now 20% larger) can accommodate the increased nominal torque, up to 2050 ft-lb in certain applications, of today's high-torque-rise diesel engines. The unit includes helical gear needle bearings for reduced heat and wear, upsized main differential side bearings for more capacity, and larger input shaft and rear side bearing for strength.
  • Premium Amboid design now standard equipment for all end-users — the above-centerline design of the inter-axle driveline provides significant improvements: reduced operating pressures for increased driveline life; less driveline angularity, vibration and energy loss; improved ride quality; and overall longer component life.
  • Most complete range of ratios — the 14X offers the fastest ratio in the industry, 2.47:1 and all the way up to 7.17:1. The extensive range ensures coverage for nearly every application and specific engine manufacturers' EPA 2010 recommendations.

The axle can be outfitted with Meritor foundation drum brakes or Meritor air disc brakes depending on the fleet's preference. The axle is produced and assembled by the company's manufacturing facilities in Asheville and Forrest City, North Carolina.

The 14X axle is the signature member of the company's MPG Series of products that are optimized for improved total life-cycle costs, be it in higher productivity or increased miles-per-gallon performance. The lineup currently includes eight components, all of them designed to deliver improved value for North American truck operators through increased productivity, maximized payload gains, and greater fuel mileage performance.

Cumulatively, the linehaul application-focused Meritor and Meritor WABCO components will enable end-users to realize savings and efficiencies in their daily operations.

“We challenged our engineering and product teams to optimize our core products — individually and collectively — to provide our truck operators of all sizes an efficiency edge in the workplace — where they make their living every day,” Plomin said. “Accordingly, MPG Series products are optimized for improved total life-cycle costs, whether in higher productivity or higher miles-per-gallon performance. A sustainable competitive edge is what our end-user customers demand and deserve.”

Select future products will be added to the MPG Series portfolio. Current MPG Series offerings include:

  • The fuel-saving Meritor Tire Inflation System by PSI with ThermAlert option.
  • SteelLite X30 brake drums.
  • Q Plus Cam Brake with stamped steel spider and automatic slack adjuster.
  • PermaLube RPL drivelines.
  • Single-piston Air Disc Brake for tractors, trailers from Meritor WABCO.
  • The RideSentry MPA 38/40 Series Trailer Suspension with Pinloc.
  • Meritor WABCO OnGuard collision safety system.
  • Meritor WABCO System Saver 1200 Plus Air Dryers.

Finally, ArvinMeritor Inc announced that PlatinumShield coated brake shoes will be available on new, OE production heavy-duty trucks and trailers beginning in May, with specific availability to be set by the respective OEM.

The coating helps prevent rust-jacking of brake shoes, a long-standing industry issue, often more prevalent in northern climates which use corrosive chemicals to remove snow and ice from roads during winter.

Initially introduced in the aftermarket in March 2009, the PlatinumShield coating was developed by ArvinMeritor brake engineering to resist micro-abrasion caused by the movement of the brake lining against the shoe table during normal use. Rust-jacking occurs when rust forms on bare shoe metal under the lining, causing the lining to lift and crack. The product offers a three-year/300,000-mile warranty against rust-jacking. End of feature

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