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Mack matching Volvo on technology

AMT transmission build running at 99 per cent, with crawler gears and safety package on the way


Mack says the build rate for its mDrive automated manual transmission is running at 99 per cent for the first quarter of 2016.

This follows a record 97 per cent matching with the Bulldog’s MP8 and MP10 engines at the company’s Brisbane factory last year.

Mack says the statistics prove the acceptance of its AMT, which is based on the 12-speed I-Shift transmission of Volvo Group Australia stablemate Volvo.

Volvo has only the AMT in its trucks. No manual transmission is offered.

Volvo Australia now offers its I-Shift with the option of crawler gears, and Mack says crawler gears will eventually follow in its bigger models in Australia.

Meanwhile Mack is also catching up with Volvo in electronic safety options.

Mack Trucks vice president Dean Bestwick told a media conference on the eve of the recent Melbourne Truck Show that a Mack safety pack is scheduled to arrive early next year.

Bestwick says the high-tech pack has a wide array of electronic goodies including lane departure warning; lane change assist, which highlights vehicles in any blind spots; stationary vehicle braking, which automatically detects and brakes for stationary objects; over-speed alert and action, which automatically recognises and adapts to speed limit signs; and adaptive cruise control with braking, which locks speed with the vehicle in front and ensures a safe distance.

Electronic stability control already comes standard in Mack’s agitator models and is optional across the rest of the range.

Unlike Volvo the Mack safety pack won’t include the option of a driver airbag, but Mack says it wants one in the long term.



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