MONTREAL -- Volvo Truck North America has just added a new regional tractor to its stable. The unveiling took place here Wednesday on the eve of Canada's largest trucking trade show, ExpoCam.
We haven't learned a lot about the truck yet, as the official press conference takes place Thursday morning. Volvo has said it expects the regional and short-haul segments will be areas of growth in the near future, and the VNR is poised to be the truck of choice for that application.
"We have been listening to food retailers and petro-chemical producers, and this is the truck they tell us they have been looking for," said VTNA president Goran Nyberg.
Goran said the industry is shifting toward a hub-and-spoke or a relay-type of operation to attract drivers.
"Many drivers are leaving the industry because they aren't happy being away for weeks at a time," said Nyberg. "Relays and hub-and-spoke will get drivers home regularly and more often, and many fleets are already tailoring there operations that way to attract the best drivers."
Volvo's VNR at a Glance
The VNR will be available in three configurations:
-VNR 300 basic daycab local service,
-VNR 400 42-in. flat-roof sleeper for regional overnight trips
-VNR 640 61-in. mid-roof sleeper for regional multi-day trips
- Design changes to the cab and hood, shorter 113" BBC, better wall-to-wall turning radius, better visibility fore and sides
- Three interior trim levels: Fleet, Express and Premier
- Volvo D11 engine is standard, 325-425 hp / 1,250-1,550 lb-ft
- Volvo D13 engine is optional, 375-500 hp / 1,450-1,850 lb-ft
- Transmissions: Volvo I-Shift, Eaton-Fuller 10, 13, 18 or Allison 5-6 speed automatic
The VNR will be available with most of the fuel saving, safety and maintenance features available in the current lineup, such as a downsped drivelines, remote diagnostics and more.
It's not markedly different in appearance, but it has a 113-in. BBC and a more rounded hood and front bumper. There's some styling clearly reminiscent of Volvo's SuperTruck.
We'll have more details on the new VNR after the press conference here on Thursday morning.
Find more photos of the launch event here.