Sterling Introduces Eaton-Fuller Automatic 6-Speed Transmission for the Acterra

Sterling Truck Corporation today announced it will offer the Eaton-Fuller Automatic 6-Speed transmission as an option for the Acterra line of Class 5-8 vehicles. The company introduced the new transmission on an Acterra M7500 tow truck chassis at the Mid-America Trucking Show here.

“The Eaton-Fuller Automatic 6-Speed is an excellent choice for Acterra customers who need an easy-to-use automatic but still want the serviceability of a manual transmission,” said Sterling Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing John Merrifield. “Sterling is pleased to bring yet another transmission option to our customers.”

The new transmission design is based on Eaton’s AutoShift transmission for medium- and heavy-duty trucks. An electronic control unit (ECU) is added that enables communication between the engine and transmission via the SAE J1939 datalink. An electro-mechanical shift control replaces the driver’s hand on the shift lever.

What makes the new transmission a true, 2-pedal automatic is the addition of an oil-cooled, electro-hydraulically-actuated clutch in place of a dry, pedal-actuated clutch. The automatic clutch is linked electronically to the ECU and shift controls.

Other features include a dash-mounted, push-button-operated electro-mechanical shift control for simple operation. A manual shift mode lets the driver decide when to shift or allows the truck to be held in its current gear, when necessary. Progressive gear ratios provide for less shifting in lower gears and improved fuel economy at highway speeds.

Typical applications for the new transmission include pickup and delivery operators, construction, towing and recovery work, beverage haulers, less-than-truckload fleets and municipalities.

Sterling demonstrated the transmission on an Acterra with a roll-off wrecker body from Miller Industries. The show truck featured a 230-hp Mercedes-Benz MBE900 diesel engine.

The Eaton-Fuller Automatic 6-Speed will be available for the Acterra beginning in June.

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