"The shape of the new Volvo VNR had to be as aerodynamic as possible for regional haul," says Product Marketing Manager Jason Spence.
Aerodynamic savings in the new Volvo VNR design are significant. The hood is narrower, pushed in and down. The LED headlamps — a safety feature that brings automotive-quality lighting to trucking — are integrated into the lines of the truck.
Brian Balicki, chief designer says he meant for the new Volvo VNR to have a "family resemblance to the classic Volvo lines." But he also worked with the unique demands of a regional haul truck.
Believing in seeing Because the Volvo VNR often works at low speed in tighter areas, visibility was a primary concern.
The aerodynamic savings are significant
"We pushed hard to shrink the hood volume as much as was possible so we reduced the visual mass and increased sightlines. It is a focus for us to make sure forward visibility over the hood is
class-leading," Spence says.
Speed and strength Balicki hopes he brought to the new Volvo VNR design some of the principles of the motor sports industry. "In motor sports the lines and the materials are all so precise and all the forms follow specific functions. You’re looking for speed and strength. We wanted to project a combination of precision and power," says Balicki.
As an example, Balicki points to a line coming off the hood and down through the bumper. "That line makes the truck look strong and ready to do the job. It makes it look planted on the road, even though it’s as aerodynamic as can be."
Designed with purpose The entire design focused on what the customer needs to do, Spence says. There was the emphasis on visibility, plus with an up to a 50 degree wheel cut, no truck has a tighter turning radius. The bumper is built to take some contact without breaking and causing a slow-down in the customer’s operation. The truck is lighter and easier to maneuver.
This truck will reestablish Volvo’s leadership in the market
"I love how purposeful this truck feels. It’s a work truck, but a dynamic, premium work truck," Spence says.
Jason Spence is not alone in loving the new truck. Many Volvo Trucks employees postponed retirement so they could stay involved with the new truck’s development.
"People extended their tenure to see the launch because they had such tremendous pride in the product we’re bringing to the market," Spence says. "It’s a highlight in our careers. This truck will reestablish Volvo’s leadership in the market."