The year: 2001 – Asteroid landing, iPod, DNA and the first I-Shift
In 2001, the first I-Shift was launched. While initially the new technology was unreliable, by 2015 over 80 per cent of Volvo FHs in Europe were equipped with the gearbox.
Asteroid landing, iPod, DNA and bad phone habits
This is the year Apple launches its first version of the iPod media player. The first player has a storage capacity of five gigabytes – tiny compared to later iPods which can store up to 160 gigabytes of data. Since its launch, over 350 million iPods have been sold worldwide.
2001 is also the year when we learn what a human is made of, with the researchers presenting the first map of the human genome, in which 99 per cent of the human genome are charted.
Some trips are more difficult than others. In 2001 NASA manages to land a spacecraft on an asteroid. The spacecraft Shoemaker had circulated and studied the asteroid Eros for a year before landing on its surface.
By the early 2000s, more and more people are acquiring mobile phones. Unfortunately this also results in many accidents. A study is published showing that those talking on cell phones are twice as likely to drive through a red light as those listening to the radio. As a result, in August 2001, 23 European countries ban talking on a mobile phone without a hands-free when driving.
Volvo Trucks introduces the first I-Shift
This is the year Volvo Trucks’ AMT gearbox (Automated Manual Transmission) is launched.
The gearboxes are not reliable and few believe in the technology but Volvo Trucks is confident that investing in automated mechanical transmissions is the way forward. In 2015, over 80 per cent of Volvo FH trucks in Europe are equipped with I-Shift.
I-Shift was an entirely new unsynchronised basic transmission with an integrated control unit that gave full control of the engine and its twelve gears.
At the time, I-Shift was only adapted for Volvo’s 9- and 12-litre engines with gross combination weights up to 44 tonnes and torque of 2,400 Nm.
Since its launch in 2001, I-Shift has been updated periodically. In 2005, it received multiple hardware and software updates that allowed it to adapt to combination weights above 60 tonnes. The gearbox then also worked in trucks with 16-litre engines. In 2009 I-Shift was updated again, particularly on the software side. The world’s first automated dual-clutch transmission was launched in 2014 – the I-Shift Dual Clutch.