Facts about popular truck gearboxes on the road in South Africa

Within this article, we provide an in-depth look at the key features, benefits, and operational insights of the most popular truck gearboxes used in the country. We explore the technical aspects and performance benefits of leading gearbox models such as the ZF AS Tronic, Volvo I-Shift, and Mercedes Actros, offering valuable information for professionals in the transport and logistics industry.

ZF Friederichschafen

ZF Friederichschafen is a technology provider to the automotive industry and within their scope is the very popular ZF AS Tronic gearbox. This is an automated manual transmission that we see in a lot of trucks today. They are also responsible for the ZF 6 speed and ZF 8 speed transmissions.

Hino Truck Gearboxes

Interestingly enough, the ZF 12 speed and ZF 16 speed AS Tronic are used in the Hino 700 and in some DAF trucks. The Hino 500 uses a completely different gearbox as the Hino 700 – it makes use of the Eaton Fuller gearbox.

Volvo Powertrain AB

Volvo Powertrain AB has produced their Volvo I shift which is typically seen in both trucks and buses. This is an automated manual transmission which has 12 forward gears and 4 reverse gears. This gearbox doesn’t have a clutch pedal and is controlled similarly to an automated gearbox with either its mounted gearstick or buttons on the dashboard.

Mercedes and Mitsubishi Truck Gearboxes

Mercedes has a strong brand presence on the road with its G240 and Actros gearboxes. This family extends into the Mitsubishi group with its FUSO gearboxes. The brand’s success can be related to its inclusion of multiple brands.

Formerly known as Nissan, the UD truck name is a common one. Trucks making use of the older UD 8 speed gearboxes are Isuzu, Iveco and DAF. The UD Quon also makes use of the Volvo I Shift.

Scania trucks

Scania trucks and buses make use of their own gearboxes with the most common gearboxes on South African roads being the GRS905 and the GRS900.

Many different trucks use different gearboxes. Trucks within the same brand also make use of completely unrelated gearboxes. This is proof that a gearbox specialist should always be contacted directly when trying to diagnose a truck gearbox fault in order to get a timely and accurate solution.