Nothing makes a truck writer like me happier than the opportunity to see a brand new truck enter the market. Two new chassis from American LaFrance, made specifically for the work truck market, debuted at World of Concrete.
The manufacturer, best known for outstanding firefighting apparatus, launched the Condor 880s class 8 and the Condor 780s class 7. The trucks are well-suited for ready-mix trucks or pumps.
The 880s has a Cummins ISC as its base engine, but the Cummins ISM and Caterpillar C-13, with up to 430 hp and 1550 lb-ft of torque, are options for concrete producers. Allison transmissions are standard. Four-axle versions are available.
The roomy cab-forward design allows easy entry and exit. The low-cut door glass and low windshield provide excellent visibility forward and to the sides. The Condor is quite roomy, with a work platform on the engine cover that is large enough for four people to dine.
The class 7 Condor 780s' base engine is the Cummins ISB 6.7 liter diesel, rated at 200 hp and 520 lb-ft. Optional ratings are available to 260 hp/ 620 lb-ft. Both chassis are designed to accept and cool EPA 2010 engines.
Bridgestone introduced the L315 wide-base radial with aggressive traction, rugged on/off highway construction and high flotation. Unlike Super Singles, wide base radials have an extra wide footprint with a rolling radius similar to the duals they are designed to replace.
Wide-base tires have grown in popularity in on-highway markets because they offer outstanding traction, improved ride, and better fuel economy. They have only two sidewalls to flex instead of the four you find on dual tires. Sidewall flexing is a major part of the rolling resistance that consumes energy. It also affects ride quality.
The new L315 has an “L” load rating, allowing each tire to carry 12,300 pounds at 120 psi inflation. It has a 30/32-inch tread while its tough tread compound resists cuts, chips, tears, and irregular wear. The tire operates at sustained speeds up to 65 mph. It is currently available as a 445/65R22.5.
Engine meets emissions rules
Detroit Diesel, part of Daimler Trucks North America, showed its new DD15, a 14.8-liter, inline 6 designed for current EPA emissions rules and beyond. This worldwide engine will take the Daimler family (Freightliner, Sterling and Western Star in North America and Mercedes Benz worldwide) well into the 21st Century.
This big-bore replacement for Detroit's venerable Series 60 comes in power ratings from 455 to 560 hp. Torque ranges from 1550 to 1850 lbs-ft. Maintenance intervals for severe duty service are 25,000 miles or comparable hours for oil and filter changes. Peak torque is achieved at 1100 rpm, with a virtually flat torque curve from 1000 to 1500 rpm.