New Benz brings big fuel gains and partial autonomy


A new Mercedes-Benz Actros has dropped in Europe, bringing with it fuel economy gains of up to five per cent, cameras instead of wing mirrors, and high-tech semi-autonomous driver aids

New Benz brings big fuel gains and partial autonomy
High-tech cameras replace your typical mirror setup

 

We don’t yet know when this model will make its way down under and Mercedes-Benz Truck and Bus Australia Pacific director Michael May says it’s all about ensuring the product is a good fit for the Australian market before introducing it.

"We are very excited to see this technology on display in Europe, but it is too early to discuss details of when it might be available in Australia," May says.

"As demonstrated with the current Mercedes-Benz model range, we will only introduce technology into Australia when we are absolutely positive that it is right for our local customers and able to withstand our tough conditions."

The model was launched just in time for the IAA Commercial Vehicles Show in Hanover, Germany, on 20 to 27 September where it was unveiled to media for the first time.

Technology is at the core of the updated model; with Mercedes-Benz citing digitisation allowing the advanced ‘Multimedia Cockpit’ that provides an improved interface between driver and vehicle.

Active Drive Assist introduces automation to the Actros, something the manufacturer says offers greater safety and less burden on the driver in stressful situations at all speed ranges.

The system gives drivers access to semi-automated driving at all speeds, a first for production trucks according to Mercedes-Benz.

Building on the Proximity Control Assist functions offering stop-and-go and Lane Keeping Assist in existing Actros trucks, the new system also brakes the truck if it gets too close to a vehicle in front and then accelerates back up to a set speed.

Active Drive Assist will also intervene and steer the truck back into a lane if it starts to veer outside of the lines.

Improved fuel consumption is being touted by Mercedes-Benz, with the new Actros using up to five per cent less fuel thanks to aerodynamics and other improvements.

The first vehicles which reach customers in Europe in spring next year and Owner//Driver will keep you posted on information relating to an Australian release.

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