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Volvo » N7 / N10 / N12

The N86 / N88 was replaced by a new model in 1973 when the traditional styling was abandoned for a new N type. Normal control was by then rare in all but North America and a few other markets for highway haulage and in various specialist heavy duty roles like oilfields, quarrying and construction. Lots of the big European players had abandoned the concept but Volvo’s project 6000 recognized a lasting demand for bonneted trucks and its initial offering, briefly called the N89, soon became the N12 with the 12 litre 330 bhp engine introduced for the F89 in 1970. It had a sixteen speed box, unusual at the time for being fully synchromesh. The N types were also available as the N7 and N10, denoting their smaller cylinder capacity, all with turbocharging.

Common to all were strikingly modern cabs made of galvanized steel pressings with printed circuit fuse boxes and a heater system able to maintain plus 35 degrees C in minus 20 outside temperature. The three speed fan could change cabin air twice per minute and facia and controls were up to touring car standards with even better seating. The windscreen was thirty five per cent bigger than the Titan types and other improvements included power steering and a higher tensile chassis which could be flitched for extra heavy duty service but was still five kilogrammes lighter per metre. The four line air braking included a spring parking brake and engine brake, whilst the steering lock had increased to fifty degrees enabling a 6.7 metre turning circle for a 3.8 metre wheelbase two axle chassis.

Even the 7 litre model was available for 38 tonne GTW operation with single reduction axle, whilst most 10 and 12 models had double reduction. For 70 to 100 tonne gross, hub reduction axles were specified, giving Volvo maximum coverage of most types of haulage with the minimum possible number of different components.

Of course, all Volvo models evolved over the years, gaining the brand’s radiator cross stripe in 1979, an intercooled 385 bhp version of the 12 litre in 1982 and a new range of sturdier eight and twelve speed gearboxes in 1986. In that year the N7 bowed out after creditable sales of over twelve thousand. The more popular N10 and N12 carried on and came to be built in several overseas plants, most notably that of White which Volvo had taken over in 1980. The famous N models lasted in production all the way through to 1990, after which demand for normal control models came mostly from the USA and South America.

N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12
N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12N7 / N10 / N12

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