MBSA Trucks ace the test
FOCUS speaks to Mercedes-Benz Trucks product manager, Christo Kleynhans, to get his thoughts on Truck Test 2013.
Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) found the test to be very beneficial. Kleynhans explains: “It indeed plays an important role and adds value to the South African trucking industry. The number of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that participated bears testament to the fact that the manufacturers recognise the value of the test.”
The MBSA driver Naveen Sook and his co-driver, Marcus Nkhoma, found the route to be a perfect match for the distribution application. Says Kleynhans: “It was fair and the Mercedes-Benz Atego 1523/54 found itself at home.”
The drivers prepared for the test with ease. Kleynhans adds: “Among our value chain offerings is FleetBoard Professional Training, which has a driver training academy. The professionalism and expertise of our driver trainers makes it easy for us to be prepared for exercises such as these.”
MBSA entered the Mercedes-Benz Atego 1523/54 with Telligent automatic gearshift and a distribution cab withseating capacity for four crew members, plus driver and co-driver. Kleynhans elaborates: “The vehicle is popular in the market, but the Telligent automatic gearshift and the distribution cab are some of the options that we wanted to showcase to the market – specifically the distribution application. We want customers to be aware of what we can offer them.”
The Telligent automatic gearshift relieves the driver’s workload, due to the automatic functions for declutching, gear shifting and engaging the clutch. It also reduces maintenance and operating costs, and protects the entire powertrain due to enhanced shifting operations.
The distribution cab adds value in various ways:
• It allows for easier working conditions for the driver, thanks to a very spacious, functional workplace with a friendly atmosphere;
• It assists recuperation phases in the cab (e.g. during waiting times) thanks to the generous space concept designed on the basis of state-of-the-art ergonomic and safety criteria;
• It provides a high level of rest and sleep comfort;
• It offers numerous storage facilities and compartments to keep the cab tidy and enhance comfort;
• It provides a high level of passive safety, due to the high-strength design and efficient safety equipment; and
• It offers a comfortable cab mounting with high suspension comfort, to reduce the strain on the driver on long journeys.
MBSA expects the vehicle to have yielded benchmark results. Says Kleynhans: “We are confident that the Mercedes-Benz Atego 1523/54 lives up to the ‘Profit on the go’ theme for the test. We are also very confident of what the Atego can deliver, and encourage customers to put it to the test and experience for themselves what this superior product can offer.”
The Atego that participated in the test was fitted with MBSA’s FleetBoard system, and so was constantly monitored by the FleetBoard contact centre at the head office. Kleynhans adds: “So we already know how well the Atego performed. FleetBoard monitored the driver behaviour and the fuel consumption.”
“Moreover, the Atego offers benchmark total cost of ownership. Reliability, safety and environmental awareness, with excellent driving comfort, are just some of the qualities that set this vehicle apart,” he concludes proudly.