“When we decided to go standard, only 25 to 28 percent of customers were ordering VADA,” Ashraf Makki, Volvo North American technology product marketing manager, told FreightWaves.
The take rate rose to 40 percent after the decision. Makki said it should be about 55 percent for the VADA 2.0 system on the Volvo VNR and VNL models. It remains optional for the VNX model available later this year.
Makki said customer education will increase the acceptance of advanced safety systems. It is a “moral obligation for everyone involved in the Class 8 system,” he said.
Trucking fatalities from crashes rose 9 percent in 2017, the most in 29 years and counter to an overall drop in roadway fatalities, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data. Preliminary figures for 2018 show an additional 3 percent increase in trucking deaths.
For those focused strictly on return on investment, higher resale values accompany trucks with advanced safety systems, Makki said. Insurance premiums can be lower for entire fleets with the systems. Individual drivers and small fleets would get less of a break.
NHTSA data places the cost of a single crash where a fatality is involved at $10 million. An injury could cost $400,000 to $500,000. The price of property damage ranges from $30,000 to $50,000. The goal of advanced safety systems is zero crashes but until that is possible, reducing the physical and financial impact is the next best thing.
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