The construction variants of the Actros are available in the weight class from 18 to 41 tonnes gross vehicle weight. These tippers, all-wheel-drive dump trucks, concrete mixers, semitrailer tractors and special-purpose chassis are available in two, three and four-axle versions and in seven output classes from 235 kW (320 hp) to 440 kW (598 hp). An eighth output class will be added with the introduction of the BlueTec-4 emission control system, as some of the output and torque values will increase. The drive configurations range from the “4x2” two-axle truck with rear-wheel drive to the “8x8/4”, a four-axle truck with all-wheel drive and two steered front axles.
Robustness, reliability and off-road capability have become synonymous with the construction-site versions of the Actros. The technology and equipment in the Actros are uncompromisingly geared towards these attributes, from the powerful and economical V6 and V8 engines and the extremely strong frame to the very robust planetary axle for optimal ground clearance. The wide range of variants provides scope for the right body to suit any application, whether as a dump truck, crane tipper or concrete mixer. And because construction-site operations also make the very highest demands on drivers, the standard cabs are among the largest and most comfortable in the world.
S-cab: emphasis on practicality
The standard S-cab provides compact external dimensions for maximum loading length, while offering plenty of space in the interior. All the switches in the cockpit are arranged into function groups according to their frequency of use. Naturally there are also numerous practical stowage facilities in the cockpit, in the door panels, above the windscreen and on the rear wall.
M-cab – more of everything
The optional medium-length M-cab offers more of everything: more space, more freedom of movement and even more stowage facilities. The large stowage boxes behind the seats provide a great deal of space for tools and equipment. A folding berth attached to the rear wall is also available as an option for relaxing breaks. And for operations requiring extra personnel, an optional centre seat equipped with a seat belt, an integral head restraint and armrests can be installed.
L-cab: comfort on longer journeys
The large, extremely spacious L-cab is also available as an option for the 2 and 3-axle variants, and is particularly recommended if longer distances are to be covered during operations. The L-cab features everything necessary for personal comfort on longer journeys, for example a lower, 70 cm wide standard berth with a spring core mattress and an optional upper berth with a width of 80 cm. The L-cab is additionally equipped with a manually adjustable air conditioning system as standard. It also features two large stowage compartments with a capacity of 180 l each and external stowage compartments, which are accessible from the interior and are able to accommodate a small crate of drinks. From a cup holder to a penholder, the stowage tray in the instrument panel leaves no wishes unanswered.
Shared standard: superior controls and comfort
Illuminated, slip-resistant steps – as a standard feature on tipper models, and available as special equipment on the other versions, the lower step is movable and pivots away to the rear on contact with an obstacle – and grab handles on both sides ensure that access to the cab is both safe and effortless. The large windscreen and side windows, as well as the mirror system with heated exterior mirrors, ensure good visibility from the interior. These are supplemented with many practical and well-considered features, for example the multifunction steering wheel with its adjustment facility for height and angle, the comfortable, air-sprung suspension seat for the driver and the practical co-driver’s seat, whose seat cushion can be simply folded up when not in use to provide space for changing clothes, for example.
Particularly on a construction site, efficient vehicle operation depends on good driver comfort. In the Actros this is ensured by the fatigue-reducing suspension seat, which is adjustable in numerous ways for an individual seating position. The flat-woven seat upholstery fabrics are dirt-repellent and extremely hard-wearing, and the interior is very easy to wash down and clean. The multifunction steering wheel is pneumatically adjustable at the touch of a button – by up to 66 mm for height and from 10 to 42 degrees in angle – and can therefore be perfectly adapted to the driver.
The multifunction steering wheel features buttons which operate the radio, CD player and telephone, leaving the driver’s hands where they belong – on the wheel. These buttons also enable operating and service data from the driver information system to be accessed. Various diagnostic functions and settings are easily and rapidly controlled via the multifunction steering wheel and displayed in the non-reflective instrument cluster – from an oil-level check to the programming function for the optional auxiliary heater.
The door control panel has a clearly arranged group of switches controlling the power windows, mirror adjustment, heated exterior mirrors etc. As another convenient feature, the Telligent shift lever is integrated into the armrest of the driver’s suspension seat, allowing easy gearshifting with a flick of the wrist.
Engines and transmissions: power and control to suit every need
The Actros models for the construction sector are powered by V6 and V8 engines. The maximum torque of the V6 units extends to 2300 Nm, while the V8 engines generate up to 2800 Nm. In every case the highest torque is made available in the lower, fuel-efficient engine speed range. Power is transferred by 16-speed transmissions whose advantages include good climbing ability and low manoeuvring speeds, which on all-wheel-drive models are ensured by engaging a reduction gear in the transfer case. Telligent gearshift is included as standard. Locking the differentials activates a special "construction programme" which shifts the gears more rapidly when freeing the vehicle on soft ground – even with the Telligent automated gearshift. The Telligent automated gearshift is available as special equipment. For the 440-kW (598-hp) output category, Mercedes-Benz Powershift comes as standard.
Front axle load compensation is a significant active safety benefit in the four-axle vehicles. This ensures that the wheels of both front axles remain on the ground in the event of height differences and on uneven surfaces, thereby providing the necessary traction for good progress and effective braking.
The braking system in the Actros construction trucks is configured for the intended applications. Tippers are equipped with disc brakes at the front, while the all-wheel-drive dump trucks and four-axle tippers, which are mainly used in heavy-duty site operations, are equipped with drum brakes all-round. The electronically controlled and highly responsive Telligent braking system is included as standard. One of its advantages is the harmonisation of brake lining wear, which makes fewer visits to the workshop necessary.
The advantages of the Telligent maintenance system installed as standard in all Actros trucks are particularly obvious in the construction vehicles, effectively doubling the previous service intervals. Servicing can be timed using three different criteria: according to the residual wear for each service item, grouped by maintenance criteria or according to the time schedule best suited to the fleet as a whole. Low-maintenance or maintenance-free bearings and suspension points on the springs and axles help to reduce the number of service items.
All conventional variants are available within the Actros series of construction vehicles, whose gross vehicle weight ranges from the two-axle 18-tonners to the 41-tonne four-axle truck. Tippers and dump trucks in this category tend to carry out their duties away from public roads. The 62 and 64 three-axle vehicles are also to be found within this 18 to 41-tonne range, and different overloadable versions are also available between 25 and 33 tonnes. There are also semitrailer tractors with two and three axles – also in 6x2/4 with a single-tyre, steered forward-trailing axle – and three-axle trucks intended mainly for on-road operations as a 6x2, or as a 6x2/4 with a Telligent steered trailing axle for materials distribution operations. And finally there are 62 vehicles with a twin-tyre trailing axle.
Actros SLT heavy-duty tractor unit
On the basis of the Mercedes-Benz Actros 3354 6x4, a highly overloadable three-axle tractor unit with two driven rear axles, the range of construction vehicles also includes the Actros SLT heavy-duty truck. This three or four-axle tractor unit is designed for extremely heavy loads and is capable of drawing a combination with
a total weight of 250 tonnes. The Actros heavy-duty truck is equipped with the OM 502 LA V8-engine and is available with either 395 kW (537 hp) or 448 kW
An additional cooling system installed behind the cab ensures that the temperature of the standard torque converter clutch unit with its integral primary retarder is always correct. This external cooling of the torque converter and retarder allows the engine cooling system to perform its primary task.
In addition to the high-performance cooling system behind the cab, the optional fourth axle is one of the most obvious differences compared with the regular production version. The additional axle is located directly in front of the two driven axles as a steered 7.5-tonne forward-trailing axle, increasing the maximum fifth wheel load to 27.5 tonnes. In Germany the Actros SLT is registered for a maximum gross vehicle weight of 35 tonnes, though 49 tonnes is technically possible.