Automated manual transmissions are growing in popularity within the North American trucking industry.
U.S. truck company Mack Trucks, which also operates in Canada, recently announced that automated manual transmissions will now be standard on the Pinnacle highway tractor, Truck News noted. The move is reflective of the rapid growth of the devices in the trucking sector.
Martin Daum, head of Daimler Trucks North America, proclaimed less than two years ago at the announcement of the new Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission that he intended to switch North American trucking over to the devices, according to Today's Trucking.
The company announced that with government assistance, it would invest $120 million in facilities to begin producing the transmissions, the publication explained. During a recent discussion with reporters, officials from Daimler stated that the success of the Detroit DT12 has gone above and beyond their expectations.
Daum expects sales of the transmission to reach 25,000 units next year.
"We invest in Detroit for 57,000 automated transmissions in 2017, and that may not be enough," he said, according to Today's Trucking. "Who would ever have thought that would happen?"
Automated manual transmissions may even attract new driving talent to the trucking industry, according to Commercial Carrier journal. Ann Demitruk, Western Star's director of marketing, at the launch of the company's 5700XE aerodynamic truck in Las Vegas, noted that it may be smart for fleets and driving schools to begin using the proliferation of automated manual transmissions as a marketing tool.
With the influence that Daimler has over the trucking industry, it is quite possible the company will play a critical role in pushing the trucking industry toward the standardized use of automated manual transmissions, Today's Trucking noted.