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Heavy-Duty Truck Review – Notable 2021 Mack & Volvo Trucks

In this article, we review notable 2021 Mack & Volvo Trucks. While we aren’t going to cover every truck in the 2021 lineup we are going to focus on notable trucks with technology that is significant to fleets.


Mack Trucks have a reputation as tough work trucks. But Mack is actually focused on making the drivers of their semi-trucks the ones with a reputation.

“Every Mack Semi-truck delivers functional design, tough construction, and reliable performance across a range of applications. So you can tackle any job, day in and day out. These are the machines that make you legendary.”


Drop Your Fuel Costs by 13%

One way that Mack is making a big impact in 2021 is with their Mack Anthem HE+ Package which boasts a 13% drop in fuel costs. To put that in perspective, according to The Truckers Report, the average over-the-road semi-truck consumes as much as $70,000 in fuel each year. A 13% reduction in fuel costs is an annual savings of $9100 per year.

This is the most fuel-efficient engine Mack has ever built, getting 11+ miles per gallon which represents fuel savings for the long haul, 445 max hp, and 1860 lb.-ft. max torque even at 900 RPM, which means equal parts power and performance.

Mack sent owner/operator Jamie “Hell Bent” Hagen on the road to help highlight the Mack Anthem HE+ Package. You can follow the journey by following #Mackonomics on your social channels.


We wouldn’t be able to talk about Mack & Volvo without focusing on what Volvo has been doing with their trucks. Volvo is not to be left out of the fuel efficiency conversation in 2021 making the Volvo D13TC Engine standard for the aerodynamic VNL series. According to VolvoTrucks.ca, “…our next generation Turbo Compound is 6% more fuel-efficient than our current 2020 D13 engine. And it’s up to 11% more efficient when compared to 2015 truck models.”

Volvo VNR Electric

The competition for the electric truck market is heating up and Volvo will not be left behind. On December 3, 2020, Volvo Trucks North America announced, “the commercial introduction… of its zero tailpipe emission, battery-electric vehicle to the North American market. The Class 8 Volvo VNR Electric truck model has a scheduled production start in early 2021.”

In a critical step towards realizing the organization’s vision for the transportation industry to be more sustainable, the Volvo VNR Electric is designed for customer applications and driving cycles with local and regional distribution ranges. The 264-kWh lithium-ion batteries, which charge up to 80% within 70 minutes, have an operating range of up to 240 km based on the truck’s configuration.

“In launching the VNR Electric, we’re answering a very real need from fleet customers across North America—to not just deliver a road-tested, battery-electric truck, but to provide them with solutions for the entire life-cycle of the vehicle,” said Peter Voorhoeve, President of Volvo Trucks North America. “Before making the VNR Electric truck available to our customers, we thought through every aspect of electrification so they didn’t have to. We have worked alongside our fleet customers to plan beyond the vehicle and have developed an entire support system, ensuring this vehicle meets their needs day-in and day-out.”

Now commercially available, the Volvo VNR Electric will play a meaningful role in the commercial truck industry’s global efforts to reduce emissions. It will be interesting to see how the aftermarket service and parts industry adapts to these new trucks and what role they will be able to play, if any, in maintaining these trucks in the years to come.

“Across the globe, Volvo Trucks is leading the electrification race. By introducing a robust lineup of all-electric commercial vehicles in both Europe and North America, we are delivering on our promise to drive this industry toward a sustainable future,” said Roger Alm, President of Volvo Trucks. “Volvo doesn’t view transportation electrification as a disruption of the existing market—we see it as an opportunity to invent something completely new and transformational. We are proud to collaborate with our partners around the world to bring this vision to life, and it is especially impressive to see what is being done together with our partners in North America.”

Volvo Trucks is introducing the Class 8 VNR Electric model with the help of strategic partnerships that will allow them to demonstrate and deliver the truck in innovative ways.

“By collaborating with 14 other organizations in the Volvo LIGHTS project in Southern California, we gained crucial experience as we worked together to demonstrate the real-world viability of the VNR Electric truck and its supporting ecosystem,” said Peter Voorhoeve. “We fully understand the steps needed to successfully deploy and operate electric trucks and can confidently offer the Volvo VNR Electric to our customers across North America.”

The press release concluded by saying, “With a goal to transform goods movement, the Volvo LIGHTS project united public and private stakeholders to design an end-to-end support system for the wide-scale electrification of commercial trucking.

Alongside rigorous real-world fleet trials, the landmark project created a robust dealership service model for sales and maintenance, developed best practices to implement reliable and cost-effective heavy-duty charging infrastructure, and launched next-generation training programs for technicians and first responders. The project will continue to gather real-world operational data through 2021.”

We will be reviewing other North American Class 8 Trucks over the next few weeks so make sure to subscribe below so you don’t miss out.

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Author: Jamie Irvine

Jamie Irvine is the host of The Heavy-Duty Parts Report and a consultant that works with manufacturers, distributors, and SaaS companies serving the heavy-duty truck parts industry.


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