Volvo marks quarter century of aerodynamics
Sep 1, 2008 12:00 PM
Twenty five years ago in June 1983, Volvo White Truck Corporation (now known as Volvo Trucks North America) introduced the first aerodynamically styled heavy-duty conventional trucks.
The trucks' design integrated a number of fuel-saving features that have become commonplace today, but were boldly different from traditional trucks in an era when diesel cost around $1 a gallon.
Volvo's focus on aerodynamics included wind-defeating devices such as a bullet-shaped, full-length roof fairing (the first to be applied to a conventional truck), cab side extenders, fairing extenders, and trim tabs. These devices were designed to move the airflow smoothly to the trailer from the cab.
The trucks Volvo introduced in a quarter century ago also included the original integral sleeper model - a truck with a unified cab and sleeper compartment. The trucks also had a hood that was six inches narrower and six inches lower at the front than at the cowl, to minimize wind resistance.
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