UD Quon gains Volvo impetus

By: Matt Wood

UD’s popular heavy duty offering, the Quon, is getting a new heart. The Quon, which has been the bestselling Japanese truck over 257kW (350hp) in Australia for the last seven years, will benefit from a new Volvo derived driveline.

UD Quon gains Volvo impetus
The new driveline will bring the Quon into line with the rest of the Australian UD model line-up which now all feature engines developed by Volvo Powertrain.

To date, the truck has been reliant on a combination of the 13-litre Nissan Diesel GE13 engine backed by an Eaton transmission.

The new 11 litre GH11 engine will feature Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) to comply with Euro 5 ADR80/03 emissions legislation.

The new engine will cover horsepower ratings from 279kW-309kW (380hp-420hp).

Behind the new engine will be a new 12 speed Automated Manual Transmission (AMT), the ESCOT-5 gear box is a fully automated two pedal unit and features hill start and an eco-roll function, ESCOT stands for Easy Safe Controlled Transmission, the gearbox has its basis in Volvo's I-shift transmission.

The new driveline is expected to be launched at the 2013 Brisbane Truck show, and will bring the Quon into line with the rest of the Australian UD model line- up which now all feature engines developed by Volvo Powertrain.

The Quon will also come standard with an Electronic Braking System (EBS) from 2013 this package also features traction control.

We recently visited UD's Ageo manufacturing plant on the outskirts of Tokyo for a preview drive of the Quon with the new drivetrain.

And initial impressions are promising as the new engine proved quite nimble and was complemented by the ESCOT-5 AMT which skipped through the gears seamlessly on the test track. And as you'd expect given the drivetrains' pedigree, drivetrain noise was kept to a civilised level.

The GH11 engine also benefits from a new Holset variable nozzle turbocharger and in the engine braking department a combination of exhaust and engine braking which gives a reported 30 percent improvement in braking power over the previous GE13 engine.

On the track, both loaded and un-laden, the four-stage engine braking system performed impressively during our drive of the new Quon and complimented what appeared to be at first glance a smooth, punchy and driveable vehicle.

Be on the lookout for the upcoming feature on the Quon preview in our magazine.

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