In order to meet growing demand for its I-Shift automated manual transmission, Volvo Trucks announced a $7 million investment to bring assembly of the transmission to the Hagerstown, MD, powertrain plant, with production scheduled for the third quarter of 2012.

Volvo’s I-Shift transmission was introduced in the North American market in 2007, and last year reached a penetration of 26 percent of Volvo Trucks’ North American sales. Customers continue to report significant fuel economy improvements from I-Shift, and because it is only available with a Volvo engine, the transmission is helping to promote the company’s integrated powertrain approach. I-Shift incorporates a host of fuel-saving and productivity-enhancing features into a reliable, durable, and lightweight design.

The transmission is currently assembled in Koping, Sweden, and then sent to Hagerstown for adaptation to North American market requirements. The Hagerstown investment will include creation of a new assembly line, installation of new equipment and tooling, and employee training. The new capacity will increase the Volvo Group’s global transmission footprint, and will be the primary source for North America.