Mack announces LR 4×2 configuration, OTA updates for refuse trucks

Two big announcements from Mack Trucks today: its low-entry refuse cabover, the Mack LR model, is now available in a 4×2 configuration, and its Over-the-Air (OTA) update system for GuardDog Connect will be coming soon for its refuse trucks. 

Mack delivered both announcements today at WasteExpo 2017 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, L.A. This year’s event kicked off Monday and ends Thursday.

Mack reports that the 4×2 axle configuration offers customers a lighter, more maneuverable option for refuse collection.

“The LR model was initially available as a 6×4 only, but some customers needed improved maneuverability that only a 4×2 configuration could offer,” said Curtis Dorwart, Mack refuse product manager. “With the addition of a 4×2 LR model, we’re pleased to meet the needs of an even wider range of refuse customers.”

With a shorter wheelbase and tighter turning radius, the 4×2 LR model has the ability to fit into alleys and other small spaces. The 4×2 LR model is also lighter than its 6×4 counterpart, improving handling. LR models in 4×2 configuration are available now for order.

Launched in 2015, the Mack LR model was engineered to meet the specific challenges of the refuse application. Customer input led to improved cab design including enhanced driver comfort, safety and visibility.

The cab’s upgraded driver environment includes power windows and power door locks, memory mirrors, in-dash air-conditioning, standard in-cab LED lighting and an instrument cluster with color LCD display. HVAC and radio controls are centrally-mounted and accessible from both driving positions. A tilt and telescoping steering column is also standard and features steering column-mounted main gauge pods for both the right-hand and left-hand driving positions to enhance gauge visibility and improve ergonomics.

The LR model was also designed with expansive front glass to provide even more visibility. Wrap-around rear cab corner windows were also added to improve visibility and safety.

A new center storage space for lunch coolers, two-liter bottles, beverage cups, mobile phones and MP3 players was added, as was a rear-wall unit that offers two additional levels of storage.

All LR models are powered by Mack’s 11-liter MP-7 diesel engine with up to 355 horsepower and 1,260 lb.-ft. of torque. The Cummins Westport ISL G natural gas engine is optional. LR models are equipped with an Allison RDS five-speed or six-speed automatic transmission.

The LR model was also designed with body builders in mind and offers additional access points and mounting locations for wiring, controls and joysticks. Customers requiring additional support can turn to Mack’s new online Body Builder Portal, which brings together all of Mack’s body builder resources into one convenient online location. Resources available through the portal include wiring schematics, a PTO pump speed calculator and more, as well as contact information for Mack’s Body Builder Support Group.

Mack’s Body Builder Support Group helps connect customers and body builders to Mack product experts to address questions that might arise during the upfit process, enabling Mack to address customer inquiries before, during and after a vehicle is put into service.

OTA updates coming for refuse trucks

Mack Trucks also announced today that its Over The Air (OTA) software update system will be available on refuse vehicles including the Mack 2018 Granite®TerraPro and LR models equipped with Mack 2017 GHG engines. Mack OTA allows customers to update software without disrupting their schedules, improving efficiency and increasing uptime.

“Mack refuse customers can plan for software updates and schedule them when it’s most convenient,” said David Pardue, vice president of connected vehicles and uptime services for Mack Trucks. “Refuse applications demand real-time service and support because they have to be up and running and on time. Mack OTA is the next step in our uptime journey.”

Mack OTA will be available on 2018 Mack LR models equipped with a Mack engine with the availability of GuardDog Connect beginning in Q3 2017. Mack OTA for the TerraPro and Granite models is also planned for later in 2017.

Software updates for powertrain components and for vehicle parameters like road speed limits are available through Mack OTA.

Mack OTA capitalizes on fully integrated Mack GuardDog Connect telematics hardware to deliver the software updates directly to customers with minimal interruption to their operations.

GuardDog Connect comes standard on every Mack model equipped with a Mack engine and provides proactive monitoring and repair planning, enabling real-time diagnosis of issues, scheduling of repairs and confirmation that needed parts are in stock and ready to install. Combined with Mack ASIST and Mack’s live OneCall uptime agents, GuardDog Connect aims to deliver the right mix of people and technology to provide decision-critical information to maximize customer uptime.

Mack’s uptime functions are based at the Mack Uptime Center, a 123,000 square-foot facility that houses personnel from every customer support function. Through the latest telematics, communications and case management tools, the Uptime Center allows Mack uptime agents to work through cross-functional teams and address customer needs quickly and efficiently.

For more information, please visit your local Mack dealer or Mack booth 2526 at WasteExpo 2017.