Loyal Mercedes-Benz customer, Arrow Transport, has commenced exchanging its existing trucks for the new generation models that are said to deliver a range of performance, economy and safety benefits.
The company runs a fleet of 49 trucks and all but three are from the Mercedes-Benz stable. The new units comprise a mix of 11-litre 2646 models that produce 460hp and 2200Nm for local side loader work and 16-litre 3358 models boasting a substantial 580hp and 2800Nm, which ply their trade hauling double container loads in Melbourne and regional Victoria.
To date, the Altona-based business has taken delivery of nine prime movers, with another seven on order. It specialises in wharf haulage and quarantine services in Melbourne and also runs containers out to regional Victoria using Super-B and A-double combinations.
Arrow Transport Managing Director, Craig Webster, said he was keen to upgrade to the new generation trucks after running a test unit as part of the local testing and evaluation program.
While impressed by the performance and fuel economy of the new trucks, it was the safety features that Craig was particularly enthusiastic about. The new Mercedes-Benz models are available with a Safety Pack, including adaptive cruise control and an automated emergency braking feature, which can even automatically initiate braking for a pedestrian or vehicle, as well as lane keeping assistance and fatigue alert.
“I didn’t hesitate to make the Safety Pack standard on all our trucks,” said Webster. “Safety is critical to what we do at Arrow Transport and this technology is as good as you will see in the Mercedes-Benz passenger cars.”
In order to limit potential damage to turntables, Webster had the dealer, Daimler Trucks Somerton, organise for reverse cameras to be fitted to the new models. The footage from the camera automatically appears on the large information screen in the centre of the truck’s dashboard as soon as reverse is engaged, which makes lining up trailer king pins a more straightforward affair.
He said working in the yard and at the wharf is also less stressful for the drivers thanks to the new crawler function that was introduced with the latest generation Powershift Automated Manual Transmission (AMT), which is standard.
“The drivers just love the new crawler function, it makes life so much easier,” he said.
As is the case with the entire range of new generation Mercedes-Benz trucks, the engines in the Arrow trucks meet the stringent Euro 6 emissions standard.
Webster said the drivers appreciate the comfort of the new trucks, but adds that it is the performance that really has them talking.
“The drivers are getting in the trucks with the 11-litre engine and they are adamant they have a bigger engine than before, when in fact they are smaller than before,” he said.
Asked how the new generation 16-litre engine performs when hauling two 40-foot containers at 82 tonnes gross, Craig replied: “They are animals. They are so strong and the drivers just love them.”
Webster also had a custom bull bar developed for his trucks. He wanted a minimalist design that would not be as bulky as regular units and would not obscure the Mercedes-Benz badge.