October 7, 2019 6:00 PM, EDT

Mack Introduces Extended Chassis Fairing, Integrated ELD Option

Jonathan Randall, Mack’s senior vice president of North American sales and marketingJonathan Randall is Mack’s senior vice president of North American sales and marketing. (John Sommers II for Transport Topics)

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SAN DIEGO — Mack Trucks has introduced an extended chassis fairing option for its Mack Anthem models to enhance fuel economy through improved aerodynamics.

The new fairing, available for order now, is designed to improve air flow around the rear axles to boost fuel efficiency by up to 0.5%.

The truck maker also announced an integrated electronic logging device option in partnership with telematics vendor Geotab. Geotab Drive for Mack Trucks utilizes the truck maker’s factory-installed telematics hardware in combination with Geotab’s mobile application and cloud-computing technology.

Mack made the announcements at an Oct. 7 press conference here at American Trucking Associations’ Management Conference & Exhibition.

Jonathan Randall, Mack’s senior vice president of North American sales and marketing, also provided an update on the truck market.

The manufacturer projected a total Class 8 market of 325,000 trucks in 2019 in North America but expects demand to decline to typical levels in 2020.

“Normal does not equal bad,” Randall said, adding that the company expects vocational truck sales to be strong next year while the longhaul segment slows.

In terms of product development, Mack continues to invest in vehicle connectivity and uptime services, including remote diagnostics and over-the-air updates, said Roy Horton, director of product strategy.

Meanwhile, Mack is moving into the emerging electric truck business.

The manufacturer is building a battery-electric version of its LR refuse model that will go into service in January with the City of New York Department of Sanitation.

Mack also will place a second electric truck into service with waste collection provider Republic Services in the first or second quarter, Randall added.

“The plan is to get to commercialization on that truck not too far after that — after we prove out the viability of it in those very tough applications,” he said.

Randall said the refuse segment is an ideal fit for battery-electric trucks because the application has set miles, set routes and opportunities to utilize regenerative braking to repower the batteries.

Mack will invest in electrification within the refuse segment as other parts of the Volvo Group pursue other applications for electric commercial vehicles, he said.

In other news, Mack extended its sponsorship of ATA’s Share the Road program into 2020. Mack has sponsored the highway safety campaign since 2001.

The truck maker also continued its support of the ATA Workforce Heroes program, including the donation of a Mack Anthem model with a camouflage-styled wrap to travel across the country to help recruit military veterans into careers in the trucking industry.

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