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Eight Decades of Freightliner Innovations

Freightliner Trucks has been building innovative and efficient vehicles for the long haul trucking industry for over 75 years.  What follows is a quick look at some of the highlights from their history:

The 1940s

Freightways Manufacturing CEO Leland James changes the name of his company to Freightliner and begins building aluminum trucks.  Hoping to increase truck hauling efficiency even in these early years, the "Model 600"  or "Shovelnose" is the first truck in the industry with an all-aluminum cab.  

During World War II, Freightliner does its patriotic duty manufacturing materials for the war effort and ceasing production of trucks until after the war.  

The 1950s

In 1953 Freightliner introduced the WF64. a truck with the first overhead sleeper design and an early approach to alternative fuel possibilities with the option to run on diesel, gasoline or liquified propane.  

In 1954 the Mountaineer was released with a 4wd drivetrain.  The Mountaineer had on/off-road capabilities and handled better in snowy road situations.  

The 1960s

In the age of jets and space flight, Freightliner released the Turboliner truck.  Powered by a Boeing gas turbine engine, this truck weighed in at 2,400 lbs less than a diesel truck with similar capabilities.  

The 1970s

The Flagship Freightliner Powerliner is released in 1973.  It lives up to its name with a 600 hp engine behind that massive 2000 sq. in. radiator.  The Powerliner was a classic Cab Over Engine design of the early modern years.  A rigid ride and crazy climb in and out of the cab combined with amazing visibility and length saving design, these trucks hold a spot in trucking history. 

The 1980s

In 1981 Daimler Benz purchased Freightliner Trucks from Consolidated Freightways. Daimler-Benz still owns the Freightliner Trucks brand today.  

In 1987. Freightliner released the soon-to-be best selling FLD, the first aerodynamic conventional design from the company.  

The 1990s

The Argosy model is released and combines the maneuverability and visibility of the COE design with the spaciousness of a

conventional design.  

The 90s also see the release of a raised roof in the FLD120 and the addition, in 1999, of the Century Class Safety and Technology Features.  

The 2000s through the present

The Class 8 Freightliner Cascadia hit the highways in 2007, with its Detroit DD15 505 hp powerplant, lighter weight design, and other features to boost fuel efficiency. 

In 2013 the 72" Cascadia sleeper cab gets the first OEM factory installed in-cab exercise system to allow drivers easy access to fitness equipment. In 2015, the Supertruck model meets a Department of Energy goal of 115% haul efficiency increase over industry standards. 

2017 marked 75 years of Freightliner truck history.  The new Cascadia represents continued industry innovation with up to date Safety, Fuel Efficiency and Connectivity features. 

JRuble & Sons Truck Sales is your source for excellent condition used Freightliner and other model trucks.  We offer a large inventory of high quality nicely refurbished daycab tractors, heavy spec cab and chassis, and other vocational trucks


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