The truck becomes smart: Five new Mercedes Actros go into operation at Vollers Bremen and twelve more in Antwerp. This is a vehicle whose design at first sight does not differ much from its forerunner but on closer inspection, however, a major change catches the eye: the main mirror and wide-angle mirror have been replaced by a serial Mirrorcam.

Instead of the mirror cases, there are narrow cantilevers on the sides in which cameras are located. These not only improve the aerodynamics of the truck considerably, they also offer better all-round visibility than conventional mirror systems. The images from the mirror cams are transmitted to two 15-inch displays on the A-pillars in the cab. A special feature here is that when driving around corners, the image of the display inside the curve swings with the driver, so that he always has the critical area in view.

The driver’s work will also be made easier by the new multimedia cockpit. Two standard interactive screens serve as a central source of information in the digital driver’s workplace. In addition to the conventional information, the displays of the assistance systems are also shown here.


Brake assistant with person recognition

As a further function to support the driver, Mercedes-Benz is bringing semi-automated driving into series production: the new Active Drive Assist can brake, accelerate and steer. The system offers semi-automated driving not only in partial, but in all speed ranges.

The Active Brake Assist 5 also promises greater safety. It intervenes when a rear-end collision or a collision with a person crossing, oncoming or in one’s own lane is imminent – if necessary also with automatic emergency braking. What is new is that the Active Brake Assist 5 now works with a combination of radar and camera system. This enables the system to monitor the space in front of the vehicle even better and also to react to people.

But despite all the technology: the driver is not incapacitated, he continues to bear full responsibility for the traffic situation. Three to five percent fuel savings


And what does the upgrade bring in terms of consumption?

The new Actros will require up to three percent less diesel than its predecessor on the motorway and in intercity traffic, it should even save up to five percent. This is mainly due to aerodynamic improvements resulting from the switch to the Mirrorcam in conjunction with the new end edge flaps, according to the manufacturer. In addition, the intelligent cruise and transmission control system Predictive Powertrain Control (PPC) works even more efficiently and, thanks to extended map material, can now also be used on overland routes. New fuel-saving rear axle ratios are also in use.