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4 Building Blocks for Greater Fuel Mileage

4 Building Blocks for Greater Fuel Mileage

Maximizing fuel mileage is important for any driver. The math is simple: the less you can spend on fuel, the more you can keep in your wallet. Performance in fuel economy may also impact your bonus as a fleet driver.

At Nussbaum, we want to set up our drivers for success. This means more than just providing training on good practices. Even a great artist can’t draw without a clean canvas and a sharp pencil. He needs the right equipment to produce the best work. That’s why we work with Freightliner to provide our drivers the most fuel efficient equipment available.

Optimized for Better Fuel Milage


Start with the engine.

Our trucks run the Detroit DD15. If you’re looking for both great power and high efficiency then look no further. This engine delivers on both points producing between 1550 to 1650 lb-ft torque at only 1100 rpm. No need to floor it to get your load rolling with this bad boy. Keep it running in the sweet spot between 1000 – 1500 rpm for best performance.

Here are some of the great features that make this engine so efficient:

  • Proprietary Asymmetric Turbocharger reduces weight and complexity delivering improved performance over other turbo designs.
  • Next generation ACRS Fuel System. Optimizes DPF regenerations through combustion and control extending regeneration intervals.
  • DDEC® electronic engine controls adjust to driving conditions and responds immediately to your commands.
  • Optimized Piston Design. Introduces a carbon scraper ring, reduces oil consumption, and contributes to improved fuel economy.
  • Optimized Oil Pump delivers greater fuel economy.
  • Weight Savings of 100 pounds compared to EPA10.

Converting Power into Motion.

When you combine the Detroit DT12 transmission with the DD15 you’ve got a 1, 2 punch for fuel economy. The DT12 takes advantage of the torque in the DD15 by optimizing its shift points.

Like the DD15, the DT12 comes with a slew of features to deliver better fuel economy:

  • ECoast. Helps to maximize fuel efficiency by allowing the vehicle to coast down grades. The engine operates at idle speeds while maintaining momentum. Sophisticated transmission electronics ensure safe operation in all driving conditions.
  • Skip Shift. To increase shifting efficiency, the electronic powertrain controls automatically skip unnecessary gears. This helps increase acceleration to achieve cruising speed quickly and smoothly. This also lets the driver begin the acceleration in the appropriate start gear based on load and grade
  • Weight Savings. The aluminum housing and single countershaft help save weight, allowing for even more payload efficiency.

Slicing Through the Wind

Despite all these great features, a strong wind can still put a hurt on your fuel tanks. That’s where Freightliner’s innovations in aerodynamics come in. Freightliner has charged out to meet the challenge of better fuel economy head on. Through their work to seal up gaps and reduce drag, they created the Cascadia.

Take a look at the features that help this truck greatly reduce drag and direct airflow:

  • Windshield seal improvements streamline airflow around the windshield and A-pillars.
  • Hood-to-bumper fill keeps high-velocity air from entering the underside of the hood.
  • Elliptical shaped mirrors to reduce drag.
  • Rear wheel covers reduce turbulence caused by the cavities in the rear tractor wheels.
  • Side extender filler piece prevents high-speed air from entering the trailer gap.
  • 20-inch side extenders direct airflow around the trailer more efficiently.
  • Chassis side fairing enhancements: 
    • direct air flow around the drive wheels
    • limits inefficient air flow into the tractor-trailer gap 
    • streamlines airflow along the vehicle sides by closing off gaps between the cab and chassis
    • improves aerodynamic performance in side-wind conditions


Where the rubber meets the road.

Last, but not least, are the tires. We don’t just throw any old tire on our trucks. We use only low rolling resistance tires. Low rolling resistance tires reduce wasted energy as they roll. This means the engine doesn’t have to push quite as hard to get you moving.

When you add it all up you can see the benefits. Combined with some good driving practices, you’ve got a winning recipe for improved fuel mileage and a lucrative payday.

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