The moon is approximately 240,000 miles away. It takes spacecraft somewhere in the neighborhood of 3 days to reach it. (Urbain, 2022)

I’ve been in my 2021 Freightliner Cascadia for a significantly longer time, but have traveled about that far since getting into it, near the end of November 2020. Let me give you the 250,000-mile update on this earth-bound vehicle.


This beautiful truck is a 2021 Cascadia with the Gen 5 DD15, boasting 450 HP and 1850 FPT at 975 RPM. The engine is mated to the DT12 AMT. Nussbaum runs wide-base singles, and the tractor is equipped with the Aero-X Package and also has the Driver’s Lounge Package. 

You may also notice the solar panels on the top of my truck. These panels are Merlin Solar Panels and create up to 440 watts of power. When used to supplement the Dual HVAC system, this reduces idle time and significantly lengthens battery life. Idle time on this truck is right at 1%. Not too shabby.

I run Freight All Kinds (FAK) in the lower 48 states. Whatever the customer loads, and wherever they want it, this truck will take it. This tractor has picked up, and/or delivered, a load in every state in the lower 48. My best guess in the 22 months that I’ve been her primary driver, given time off for vacations, truck shows, and a month where some of the fine engineers and technicians from Freightliner were running tests and tweaking parameters, she’s actually been on the road less than 20 months. That should shed some light on how much running has actually taken place.

Fuel Economy

Below are the various spreadsheets that I’ve built to keep track of not just the fuel economy, but empty miles and Ton-Miles Per Gallon (TMPG). This number takes into account all miles, empty and loaded, as well as all load weights. It’s calculated by taking tons x miles, then divided by gallons (T x M)/gallons. This calculation is how they can make the claim that trains are more fuel efficient than trucks. TMPG is higher, even though MPG is decidedly lower. Here you can see my monthly totals, as well as rolling averages, calculated through the second week of September. 




Soon I’ll be getting into a brand new Cascadia and will pass these keys on to another very lucky driver. The new truck will be called Scarlett or Enzo…..decisions, decisions, decisions. I’ll keep you posted and do a new truck review when I take delivery. There will be some fun stuff to report on with that one.

Urbain, T. (2022, August 9). How long does it take to get to the moon? Distance & Travel Time. StarLust. Retrieved September 19, 2022, from https://starlust.org/how-long-does-it-take-to-travel-to-the-moon/

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Clark W Reed

Clark Reed of Roscoe, Illinois is an OTR company driver and trainer for Nussbaum Transportation based out of Hudson, Illinois. He has been driving since 2005 and has driven van, reefer, and tanker. He currently hauls dry van to all lower 48 states. Clark is passionate about MPGs and how driver habits influence them. The lifetime average of his 2018 Cascadia is 9.75 mpg, with eyes on 10. Clark, along with Henry Albert, was one of the seven drivers in 2017's "Run on Less" by NACFE, a road show, demonstrating what fuel efficiency can be obtained with existing technologies.

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