All That's Trucking

Peterbilt Technology Truck talks to iPad

March 23, 2012

I saw a lot of neat iPad apps this week at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Ky. But one of the coolest was on Peterbilt's 2012 Technology Truck.


The Model 587 Technology Truck was one of the trucks set up in the South Hall entryway, right when you walk in, and always seemed to have people clustered around.

The truck is designed to showcase emerging technologies. The interior of the truck is "a study on human centered design," and will be used for obtaining feedback for future features. Some of the unique ideas include as a sliding rear wall sleeper, a flexible floor plan, and a driver's workstation.

There's an innovative and eye-catching aero package that, when combined with an aerodynamically optimized trailer, has demonstrated over 9 mpg pulling 63,000 pounds using current engine technology. Low-drag mirrors contain NHTSA compliant flat glass with convex functionality available through hood-mounted cameras.

A Lithium-Ion Power Pack stores enough power to start the truck and provide 10 hours of engine-off hotel loads / air conditioning -- with a 250-pound weight savings over lead-acid batteries.

In this video you'll learn more how the truck communicates wirelessly with devices such as a tablet PC or in this case an iPad. The truck wirelessly transmits the status of the truck (mileage, tire pressure, diagnostics, etc.) using 5.9 GHz connectivity to the iPad. The iPad is integrated into the dash yet can be removed for use both inside and outside the vehicle. This allows the driver simple access for inspection, diagnostics, live video, tire pressure and temperature monitoring, and onboard scales.