All rigs bright and beaut

The Bris­bane show had the bling, the brawn and the safety tech brains

The Advertiser - Motoring - - WORKING WHEELS -

BRIGHT paint and chrome shared the spot­light with green en­gines and safety tech­nol­ogy at the Bris­bane Truck Show.

The huge cel­e­bra­tion of truck­ing played host to some big and brash prime movers in­clud­ing the at­ten­tion­grab­bing In­ter­na­tional Lone Star, which ap­pears half hot rod and half truck.

With its slop­ing nose, co­pi­ous chrome and blue flame paint job, the spe­cial truck was a favourite among vis­i­tors.

Un­hap­pily, the Lone Star is not one of the trucks In­ter­na­tional plans to sell when it re­launches in Australia late this year. How­ever, com­pany sources say it could come here in a few years.

In­ter­na­tional dis­played a smart Pro Star prime mover, sim­i­lar to the CAT CT model. It was fit­ted with an op­tional ex­pand­able sleeper, which slides out the rear wall of the truck to give the driver a bit more room to stretch out.

An­other crowd favourite was the im­pos­ing Freight­liner Ar­gosy from the Trans­form­ers 4 movie. The one-off black and grey cabover, which fea­tures a cus­tom de­sign in­clud­ing stand­out LED strobe head­lights, was a hit with fans young and old.

Mercedes-Benz drew in the crowds with a chunky Zet­ros goany­where truck. Used in Europe as a mil­i­tary ma­chine or for re­mote ser­vice , the Zet­ros won praise with its men­ac­ing mon­ster truck pres­ence.

Mercedes also pre­sented two Ac­tros mod­els at the show, in­clud­ing a limited edi­tion Black Se­ries ver­sion of the cur­rent model, as well as a next gen­er­a­tion Ac­tros brought in from Europe.

The new truck is not due to go on sale here un­til late next year. Mean­while, Mercedes will do com­pre­hen­sive testing to en­sure the truck, which has its own Aus­tralian spec­i­fi­ca­tion, is ready for the ex­tremely tough lo­cal con­di­tions.

The next-gen­er­a­tion Ac­tros runs a Euro6 en­gine, so it is cleaner than the ex­ist­ing Euro5 stan­dard re­quired in Australia.

Some brands pro­moted Euro6 mod­els in Bris­bane, in­clud­ing Scania, which painted all of its trucks green to give a big clue as to their en­vi­ron­men­tal cre­den­tials.

The Swedish brand al­ready sells six-cylin­der Euro6 mod­els in Australia, but re­vealed the first V8 Euro6 mod­els at Bris­bane, in­clud­ing the 537kW (730hp) R 730 hero, demon­strat­ing that trucks can be both green and mean.

MAN also pre­sented a Euro6 cabover TGX 26.560, which will be tested lo­cally be­fore be­ing re­leased for sale. Den­nis Ea­gle showed off a hy­brid rub­bish truck.

Safety was also a big fo­cus at the show. Isuzu re­vealed its up­dated N Se­ries mod­els, which — along with equip­ment up­grades, more power and a re­designed nose — will be fit­ted with po­ten­tially life­sav­ing elec­tronic sta­bil­ity con­trol tech­nol­ogy.

Hino fits ESC on its 300 Se­ries truck but the Isuzu de­ci­sion will make an even big­ger im­pact given it is the topselling brand in Australia.

Volvo Trucks said it will have au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing in the safety pack that is popular on its lo­cally made FH heavy duty truck.

This tech­nol­ogy, which will be­come manda­tory on all new big trucks in Europe, is hailed as a huge step for­ward, us­ing radar to not only warn the driver of an im­pend­ing crash but also to hit the brakes to avoid a crash or at least limit the sever­ity.

The FH safety pack, which is popular among large fleets, in­cludes ESC, blind spot warn­ing, lane de­par­ture warn­ing sys­tem and radar­based adap­tive cruise con­trol.

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