Mercedes-Benz Atego: outstanding technology, operation and appearance
The new, clearly structured Mercedes-Benz Atego range includes trucks and semitrailer tractors with gross vehicle weights between 6.5 t and 15 t. The previous “heavy” Atego with two and three axles is now part of the completely re-engineered and extended Mercedes-Benz Axor family. Concentrating the Atego on light and medium trucks has led to a precisely tailored distribution vehicle concept.
The advantages the Atego has adopted in unchanged form from its predecessor in-clude a low cab entry height, with only one step in the light versions. This is due to a particularly low frame with a lowered front end.
Atego 1222: low frame height, high payload
The four-cylinder OM 924 LA engine enlarged to 4.8 l displacement is new in the Atego. This unit has an output of 160 kW (218 hp) and generates a maximum torque of 810 Nm. It combines an excellent performance with low weight: the four-cylinder engine is around 100 kg lighter than a comparable six-cylinder engine, and this is fully to the benefit of the payload.
As before, the new Mercedes-Benz Atego is available with three basic engines in the 900 series with four and six cylinders. The outputs of the four-cylinder OM 904 LA engines with a displacement of 4.25 l range from 90 kW (122 hp) and 110 kW (150 hp) to 130 kW (177 hp). This is rounded off by the new OM 924 LA engine with 160 kW (218 hp). The six-cylinder engines with a displacement of 6.4 l have outputs of 170 kW (231 hp), 180 kW (245 hp) and 205 kW (279 hp). As a common feature of all these power units, their maximum torque is already available in a low engine speed range from 1200 rpm to 1600 rpm.
Mercedes-Benz Axor: completely revised and extended
The Mercedes-Benz Axor series has been completely revised. Visually and technically very close to the Actros, the Axor as a heavy distribution specialist now forms the link between the new Atego and the Actros. The Axor series has been completely restructured to this end. In addition to the previous, two and three-axle semitrailer tractors (4x2 and 6x2) there are now heavy trucks with two axles (4x2 and 4x4) and a gross vehicle weight of 18 t, as well as three-axle trucks with a gross vehicle weight of 25 t (6x2) and 16 t (6x4). With the help of the modular construction system by Mercedes-Benz, an entire family of heavy trucks for the distribution, long-distance and construction sectors has therefore been created below the Actros.
The new Axor is powered exclusively by six-cylinder in-line engines from the 900 series with displacements of 6.4 l and 7.2 l, as well as the OM 457 LA with 12.0 l. The engines in the OM 906 LA series have outputs of 170 kW (231 hp) and 205 kW (279 hp), while the larger OM 926 LA generates 240 kW (326 hp). Maximum torque ranges from 810 Nm to 1300 Nm and is already available at low engine speeds of 1200 rpm to 1600 rpm. As before, the large six-cylinder in-line OM 457 LA is available in the output classes 260 kW (354 hp), 295 kW (401 hp) and 315 kW (428 hp). The maximum torque of the most powerful variant is 2100 Nm.
The new Axor is equipped with disc brakes all-round and a compressed air system with a constant pressure of 10 bar – the basis for short braking distances and high fade resistance under heavy braking loads. The construction vehicles are however equipped with drum brakes owing to the risk of soiling. In combination with the optionally available, electronically controlled Telligent braking system, the Axor sets the standard in braking safety.
Mercedes-Benz Actros: pioneer in emission control
The answer is “BlueTec diesel technology”. With this technology the Actros meets the Euro-4 emission standard prescribed from October 2006, and as an alternative it is even able to comply with the subsequent Euro-5 standard which only comes into force from October 2009. With a combination of ecology and economy, the new Mercedes-Benz trucks with BlueTec are an outstanding solution for the road haulage of the future.
The future has long begun
The first Actros trucks and semitrailer tractors equipped with BlueTec started being delivered to customers in February 2005, commencing with the high-volume models in the output classes from 235 kW (320 hp) to 350 kW (476 hp) with a V6 engine. In the following months the long-distance models in the Actros and Axor series will gradually become available with BlueTec. When the Euro-4 standard comes into force in October 2006, the complete range of long-distance, distribution, construction and special-purpose vehicles will be available.
Numerous economic arguments in favour of BlueTec
Economic aspects need to be considered when choosing between an Actros BlueTec 4 and a BlueTec 5. Buyers of a new Actros BlueTec will already enjoy numerous lasting commercial advantages at an early stage. Right up to September 2009, 40-tonners with more than four axles have significant advantages relating to German motorway tolls if they already meet the Euro-5 emission standard in advance.
Financial advantages of various kinds are also already planned or obtainable in many other European countries for commercial vehicles with particularly low emissions. These are enhanced by a better resale value for used vehicles and a reduced fuel consumption, where DaimlerChrysler engineers have measured an advantage of up to five percent versus Mercedes-Benz trucks equipped with Euro-3 technology.
Low-emission engines are based on SCR technology
The new BlueTec diesel technology employed by DaimlerChrysler is based on highly efficient engines and emission control using SCR technology (SCR = Selective Catalytic Reduction). The operating principle of SCR is that unwanted nitrogen oxides are converted into harmless nitrogen and water vapour by the addition of ammonia as a reducing agent in a catalytic converter. A non-toxic and odourless, aqueous urea solution is used for this purpose. The solution used in connection with SCR technology is known as “AdBlue”. Under the control of the engine management system, AdBlue is sprayed into the hot exhaust gases from a separate tank as required.
An AdBlue infrastructure based on public filling stations is currently under construction throughout Europe, and a supply system based on company-operated refuelling stations is already possible now. The engines do not require low-sulphur fuel, therefore they are usable on a Europe-wide basis without problems. BlueTec is designed to last for the operating life of the vehicle and is practically maintenance-free. This means that the service and oil-change intervals of BlueTec vehicles are not impaired in any way.
Mercedes-Benz Econic: specialist for municipal operations
Usually to be found in an urban environment, the distinctive Mercedes-Benz Econic series is particularly common in the waste disposal sector, but also in fire-fighting services, airport ground services, for drinks deliveries and with a tanker body. The Econic is specially suited to these by virtue of its low cab concept, with a continuously level floor on a lowered front frame section and a low overall frame height of only 874 mm. The Econic is equipped with a full air suspension system as standard. Launched in April 1998, the Econic has long established itself as a fast, efficient, easily driven and highly manoeuvrable vehicle in predominantly inner-city operations. This is aided by its progressively acting steering system and the electronically/ hydraulically controlled trailing or forward-trailing axle in the three-axle variant of the Econic.
New drive systems with a diesel and natural gas engine
The Econic is available in two and three-axle versions with gross vehicle weights of 18 t and 26 t. New to the line-up is a right-hand-drive four-axle version with a gross vehicle weight of 32 t. These models are powered by six-cylinder in-line engines. In addition to the OM 906 LA in the output classes of 170 kW (231 hp) and 205 kW (279 hp), the OM 926 LA with 240 kW (326 hp) has been available since spring 2004. All Econic models with a diesel engine are equipped with a 200-litre aluminium fuel tank. As an alternative to diesel, the Econic is also to be had with a natural gas engine. The M 906 LAG natural gas engine has a displacement of 6.88 litres and an output of 205 kW (279 hp). Power is transferred by a six-speed Allison automatic transmission.
The natural-gas-powered Econic is now voluntarily certificated according to the EEV emission standard and therefore even betters the Euro-5 limits. The emissions of the natural gas Econic contain virtually no microscopic particles or particulates. The natural gas power unit has the further advantage of being extremely quiet. As an alternative, a combination of a diesel engine and a ceramic particulate filter with an integrated oxidising catalytic converter is now available ex factory or in the form of a retrofit package. The Econic range is supplemented with new variants with a shorter wheelbase of only 3450 mm. These excel with outstanding manoeuvrability, with a turning circle diameter of only 14.80 metres.
Interior significantly upgraded
The interior of the Econic has been redesigned in many respects. Rather than on a bench seat for three persons, passengers are now seated on individual seats with head restraints, as in a bus. New entrance and floor coverings make for considerable improvements with regard to non-slip characteristics and cleaning. There are also four additional installation spaces for DIN-size units above the driver.