SAN DIEGO — Saying that his company believes “that the best components delivering the best benefits to the customer should be the standard,” Stephen Roy, president of Mack Trucks North American Sales and Marketing announced that the company’s Pinnacle model now comes with the Mack mDrive transmission as a standard feature.
Roy made the announcement at the American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exposition in San Diego, California.
The mDrive is a 12-speed “automated manual” transmission that is controlled via a dash-mounted shift pad. An integrated display indicates the current gear, while a separate display, located in the vehicle’s instrument panel, shows the number of up or down shifts available, the current gear and the current operating mode.
Roy began the announcement by lauding Mack’s “leadership role” as a supplier of heavy-duty vehicles for the construction industry. “Our goal is to establish a leadership role in over-the-road trucking as we have in the construction sector,” he said.
The mDrive transmission, formerly an optional component of Mack’s Pinnacle model, was installed in about 50 percent of the tractors sold. Customers will still have the ability to spec’ other transmissions in future orders.
Roy added, “Our confidence in the mDrive and its ability to offer increased efficiency, productivity and safety will set the bar for the industry.”
The conference topic then shifted to Mack’s sponsorship of the American Trucking Associations Share the Road program. Mack announced in late September that it would sponsor the program for the next year, marking the 13th consecutive year the company has done so.
As part of the sponsorship, Mack is providing a 2014 70-inch high-rise Pinnacle tractor featuring a Mack MP8 505C engine and mDrive automated manual transmission. The company claims the engine produces 505 horsepower and 1,760 lb.-ft. of torque.
The tractor is also equipped with Mack Stability Advantage from Bendix, along with the Bendix Wingman Advanced adaptive cruise control that integrates throttle, engine brake and foundation brakes into the cruise-control function.
The Share the Road program dispatches drivers who have exemplary safety records to conduct safe driving demonstrations for students, motorists and other groups. Subjects such as commercial vehicle stopping distances, blind spots and other hazards unique to large vehicles are discussed in the demonstrations.
Roy concluded that “Through the Share the Road program, we can do our part to help increase highway safety by educating as many motorists as possible about safe driving behaviors.”
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