Trucker 7469 Meritoract 4 1

Meritor CEO urges industry to adapt to coming changes

May 4, 2018
Trucking industry manufacturers and suppliers must adapt to electrification and other emerging technologies or risk being left behind.

LONG BEACH, CA. Trucking industry manufacturers and suppliers must adapt to electrification and other emerging technologies or risk being left behind.

That was the message from Jay Craig, president and CEO of Meritor Inc., during his keynote address at the Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo.

Craig acknowledged the pace of change is progressing so rapidly that it is “making it difficult to make planning decisions.”

For a supplier like Meritor, there is a constant balance between investing to remain a leader in axles and other components, while taking steps to become a leader in electrification and other emerging trends.

He cautioned ACT attendees to deny projections on the growth of electric vehicles “at your own risk.”

Craig spoke at ACT on the same day Meritor announced the launch of Blue Horizon, a new technology brand representing the company’s emerging platform of advanced technologies centered on electric drivetrain, efficiency, and connectivity systems.

Meritor said the products offered under the Blue Horizon brand will include integrated electrified solutions for Classes 4-8 commercial vehicles across multiple vocations.

“Blue Horizon signifies our commitment to evolutionary and revolutionary solutions for commercial transportation,” Craig said. “With this new brand, we’re looking forward to the future of electrified drivetrains and to more innovations in the years ahead.”

Initially, Blue Horizon electric drivetrain systems will feature Meritor’s integrated eCarrier that utilizes an electric motor inside the axle to power the vehicle, replacing a conventional mechanical engine with an electric motor integrated into the rear drive axle.

Meritor’s eCarrier will launch with the eAxle and eSuspension platforms to deliver power ranges of 150, 180 and 200 kW in each axle and peak power of 250 kW.

Also at ACT, Meritor also it will supply all-electric drivetrain systems for two Peterbilt vehicle platforms through its alliance with TransPower.

Meritor will supply high-efficiency and lightweight axles, drivelines and brakes for 12 Peterbilt all-electric Class 8 Model 579 day cab tractors and three Model 520 refuse trucks. TransPower is a California-based manufacturer of integrated drive systems, full-electric truck solutions and energy-storage subsystems.

Testing will last about one year and is designed to prove out the ranges, operating hours and charging requirements of vehicles operating in real-world service conditions. The trucks will operate at ports throughout California.

About the Author

Neil Abt

Neil Abt, editorial director at Fleet Owner, is a veteran journalist with over 20 years of reporting experience, including 15 years spent covering the trucking industry. A graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., he began his career covering sports for The Washington Post newspaper, followed by a position in the newsroom of America Online (AOL) and then both reporting and leadership roles at Transport Topics. Abt is based out of Portland, Oregon.

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