Benz makes safety cheaper


The safety package offered by Mercedes-Benz on its range of heavy commercial vehicles is a lot more affordable than many operators realise

Benz makes safety cheaper
Benz makes safety cheaper

By Gary Worrall | June 11, 2010

The outstanding safety package offered by Mercedes-Benz on its range of heavy commercial vehicles is a lot more affordable than many operators realise.

ATN Technical Editor Gary Worrall had a refresher course on how well the technology performs during the recent ‘Drive It’ program at the Australian Automotive Research Centre in Anglesea.

With the full safety package comprising Telligent Lane Assist, Telligent Proximity Control, Active Brake Assist and a Voith Retarder, Benz customers can now specify the complete package for $14,500, including GST.

While the initial price when the technology was launched in 2007 was approximately $25,000 for the complete package, Benz management in Australia decided to reduce the price to make it more accessible to operators.

The Lane Assist uses downward-looking sensors to read the lane markings on either side of the truck, setting off a warning if the truck crosses over without the indicator being activate, allowing the driver to bring the truck under control.

The proximity control uses radar to control the distance between the truck and the vehicle in front, activating the brakes as needed, as well as resuming the pre-set speed once the traffic obstruction is removed.

Active Brake Assist, which is activated after the truck is dong at least 15km/h, detects moving objects in front of the truck and warns the driver, at the same time activating the braking systems to help avoid a rear-end collision, although it is unable to detect anything stopped or moving less than 8km/h.

The Voith Retarder is a hydrodynamic auxiliary brake offering up to 3,500 Newton metres of brake force, with the driver able to select five different levels of brake force, depending on the situation, with the retarder also forming part of the emergency braking effort if required.

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