MAN all-wheel-drive trucks prioritise safety on their tracks along with driver fatigue management

Penske Commercial Vehicles tells Australian Mining how it doesn’t compromise on class-leading comfort but makes it standard across all its vehicles.

MAN’s development of its all-wheel drive (AWD) range is progressively driven by new technologies and innovation as well as customer requirements.

Its fit-for-purpose AWD range does not typify the introduction of a new product, but rather an ongoing evolution.

From mining, drilling, to power and energy applications, MAN’s fit-for-purpose AWD vehicles have the ability to turn into motor homes, crane trucks and special-purpose vehicles including drill rig applications.

For example, one of the innovative features is MAN’s hill-climb brake that is designed to let the high-payload trucks stay put on an incline, while reducing the load on the parking brake and preventing potential collisions. It allows the trucks to stabilise through road undulations and corners.

Sergio Carboni, national sales manager – MAN, Penske Commercial Vehicles, says there’s always something to overcome with any specialised product requirements.

“MAN has always been renowned for working toward a better solution and overcoming those obstacles, including the most severe off-road requirements,” Carboni says.

The versatility, robustness and reliability of the German-manufactured MAN AWD range respond to various environmental challenges. They maintain high performance in harsh conditions of Australian mine sites – in terrains of mud, red dust and high or low gradient – as well as in snow and icy environments in other parts of the world.

In the case of a lock-up, a truck driver can apply continuous braking using MAN’s anti-lock braking system (ABS) technology. The ABS is equipped with off-road logic, which improves the truck’s braking effect on soft, unpaved surfaces such as gravel, sand, mud and deep snow at a low speed.

The MAN AWD range not only emphasises safety by producing a truck that is secure for both users and the ancillary equipment that go on the trucks, but also features that are integrated in the actual hardware.

The vehicles are equipped with impact-absorbing deformable cab; in the case of a frontal collision, the cab will demount from its chassis, allowing it to move rearward up to 0.75 metres. This will absorb the energy and cause the cabin to stay intact despite a 100km/hr frontal impact.

The MAN AWD range follows worldwide cab safety requirement ECE-R29, which has become a standard rating across all models of the MAN.

They also comply with all of Australia’s environmental emission requirements, which are the Euro 5 standard (ADR80-03) with some of the vehicles already moving toward the Euro 6.

A lot of the ergonomic European features have, therefore, become a standard in these trucks. They include climate control and air conditioning; programmable speed limiter; Bluetooth connectivity; multi-adjustable and heated driver’s seat with three-way lumbar support; multi-function steering wheel integrated with stereo; and sun-blinded door windows that prevent glares.

“One of the MAN’s key safety requirements is to ensure that a driver can concentrate and maintain his focus on the road. What MAN has done is transition driver comfort from what was, in the past, the domain of prestige vehicles, to now being the domain of commercial vehicles,” Carboni says.

The decibel level within the cab is kept to a minimum to maximise a driver’s comfort on the road – an important aspect in fatigue management when it comes to long-distance travels.

Carboni says MAN has been widely considered the market leader for all-wheel drive products for a long period of time in Australia.

“In addition to the mining segment, we’ve also enjoyed segment growth in the AWD space throughout the rail, defence and essential services segments.

“Penske continues to invest in our dealer network nationally ensuring customer support is not only available in major cities and regional locations, but also in remote areas. Through Penske’s parts distribution business, the company has the ability to ensure there will be an adequate supply of parts across the network.

It strives to have continuous local stock to meet customers’ needs. “We don’t just sell the vehicles on a customer order basis,” Carboni says. “Through regular collaboration with our dealer network, there is ongoing stock order placement with the MAN factory to meet demand as they arise.

“Penske’s commitment is to investing in the long-term supply chain for our clients, supporting them with localised stock.”

To top it all off, driving and service training have been made available, so users can maximise their vehicles’ productivity and utilise them efficiently.

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