Volvo Trucks introduced the FlowBelow Tractor AeroKit, which includes a system of wheel covers and fairings designed for improved aerodynamics and fuel efficiency, as a factory-installed option in Q2 2020. The announcement was made on Oct. 28, 2019, at the North American Commercial Vehicle (NACV) Show in Atlanta, Ga.
"The aerodynamics of our trucks have a significant impact on fuel efficiency and our customers' bottom line," said Allison Athey, product marketing manager, Volvo Trucks North America. "The new FlowBelow package offers our customers an enhanced aerodynamic option, providing up to an additional 1 percent increase in fuel efficiency when combined with our most aerodynamic truck spec including the Xceed fuel efficiency package, and a dry van with trailer skirts, further reducing environmental footprints."
The FlowBelow Tractor AeroKit is a complete system designed to minimize turbulence and improve aerodynamics by surrounding the drive wheels to better manage the air that moves around the tractor while in motion. The system consists of wheel covers, a center fairing between the wheels and a rear fairing behind the wheels. These pieces work together to maintain control of the airflow from end to end, keeping the air running along the side of the truck and around the wheels. The air is then funneled out when it reaches the back of the truck, jumping the gap between truck and trailer.
"Heavy-duty trucks experience a great deal of turbulence and drag due to their sheer size and speed at which they travel down the road," said Josh Butler, president and founder, FlowBelow Aero Inc. "The FlowBelow Tractor AeroKit significantly decreases the impact of those factors, optimizing the surface along the side of the truck to make it more aerodynamic, leading to better fuel mileage and real savings for customers."
Not only does the FlowBelow Tractor AeroKit improve the efficiency of the truck, it provides a variety of styling options with wheel covers available in black, white and chrome, and fairings available in black and white. The wheel covers and fairings are both durable and flexible, enabling them to better withstand road conditions, debris and contaminants while also providing easy access for drivers and mechanics.
Volvo Trucks will begin offering factory-installed FlowBelow wheel covers and fairings separately, as well as the full FlowBelow Tractor AeroKit included with its Xceed fuel efficiency package as a customer option for truck orders in 4x2, 6x2, and 6x4 axle configurations by the end of 2019. Volvo Trucks will offer factory installation of the FlowBelow system for all VNL and VNR models in Q2 2020.