New model cars are introduced every three or four years, but heavy truck introductions may come once a decade. That's one reason why the new Freightliner 114SD Severe Duty Mixer, introduced at this year's World of Concrete, is noteworthy.
Freightliner didn't develop it alone. It partnered with people who know a lot about mixers: McNeilus Cos. The Freightliner 114SD SFA chassis was designed around the McNeilus 1.5-cubic-yard Bridgemaster Transit Mixer to meet federal bridge formula requirements.
The combination allows for a 36-foot bridge with a 66,000-pound gross vehicle weight. That means 9.5- to 9.7-cubic-yard loads.
With a 114-inch BBC (bumper to back of cab) and a newly designed sloped hood, the 114SD provides outstanding vision all around, a major safety feature on jobsites, in the yard, and in traffic. It's also very maneuverable when specified with a 45-degree wheel cut.
Standard air rear cab mounts add to driver comfort. Inside the ergonomically designed driver's area are close-to-hand controls, an automotive-style dashboard, easy-to-read LED backlit gauges, and a comfortable seat.
Steer axles start at 12,000-pound capacity and are available to 22,000 pounds. Both single and tandem drive axles are available. Single axles range from 21,000 to 38,000 pound rating. Tandems start with the 40,000- pound standard drive axle and are available in ratings to 58,000 pounds. An optional tridem drive axle set has a 69,000-pound rating.
Other options include pusher and tag axles rated from 8000- to 22,000- pound capacity. Freightliner Air Liner and TufTrac rear suspensions are optional, as are Hendrickson and Chalmers suspensions.
The standard Powertrain is the Detroit Diesel DD13 with up to 350-hp and 1350 lb-ft of torque, pulling through an Eaton Fuller 10-speed manual gearbox. The DD13 is available with up to 450-hp and 1650 lb-ft of torque. A range of Allison and Eaton transmissions are available, including the automated UltraShift Plus vocational series.
Later this year, two Cummins engines will be added to the options list. The ISC will offer up to 350-hp and 1000 lb-ft of torque, while the larger ISL can provide up to 380-hp and 1300 lb-ft.
Partnering with McNeilus helped Freightliner simplify the upfitting of the mixer body. The new truck has a clean back-of-cab, with all emissions control devices, the 70-gallon fuel tank and a six-gallon DEF tank packaged under the cab.
Freightliner uses Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) to control NOx and a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) for soot and ash. Detroit Diesel claims its BlueTec SCR system virtually eliminates the need for DPF regeneration when parked. That saves fuel and, with a perishable product like concrete, time.
For those who prefer front-discharge ready-mix trucks, Terex Roadbuilding introduced its new EPA 2010-complic-it mixers at the show. The line consists of three-, four-, five-, six- and seven-axle models in both standard and bridge formula designs.
The current engine is a Cummins ISX 11.9 (liter) diesel, in ratings of 350-, 380- and 450-hp. Later this year, Terex will offer Detroit Diesel DD13 engines ranging from 350- to 450-hp. Both engine makers use SCR technology and DPFs to meet EPA 2010 requirements. The five-gallon diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) tank must be refilled after 165 to 250 gallons of fuel are consumed, depending on workload. Gauges alert drivers.
All exhaust after-treatment components—the SCR, DPF and catalytic converters—are secured to the frame rather than the engine. New mountings for the engine and transmission allow each to be removed independently, simplifying service to either.
The new Terex has an electronic control module that senses if the truck is loaded. It drives the new load-based shifting schedule, a Terex exclusive. By varying transmission shift points according to load, fuel economy is improved.
Paul Abelson is a former director of the Technology and Maintenance Council of the American Trucking Association and is on the Board of Truckwriters of North America.