WS trucks get new suspensions

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DALLAS, Tex. – Western Star 4964SX and 4964EX models with Freightliner-designed suspensions and are evidence of the changes underway since Freightliner bought the company earlier this year.

Despite the equipment changes however Freightliner president Jim Hebe vowed to preserve the Western Star-brand engineering and styling.

“This truck has been around for more than 30 years and we have no intention of changing it,” he said adding that, in fact, the takeover will bring security to Western Star. “No more will Western Star be that little niche company always recorded in statistics as ‘other’. The future of Western Star as a truck brand is now secure.”

One of the two new Freightliner-designed suspensions to be available on Western Stars, the Airliner, has fewer parts, aluminum brackets and aluminum air-bag pistons, all of which contribute to an undisclosed weight savings. Also, elastomer bushings ensure metal parts won’t rub together and underslung trailing arms permit low fifth-wheel heights and are claimed to promote longer life. A ride-height control valve that reportedly lengthens the driveshaft life compared with a conventional rubber-seat valve, which deteriorates with age, is another feature. The Airliner provides single suspension rates of 21,000 lb. and 23,000 lb. Tandem drive suspension rates offered are 40,000 lb. and 46,000 lb.

The other new suspension to be made available on Western Stars is the TufTrac spring suspension, engineered for on/off highway vocations. It requires no periodic adjustments or lubrication and provides three capacity ratings: 40,000 lb.; 46,000 lb; and 52,000 lb.

The list of internal enhancement includes:

The Cummins RoadRelay 4 driver information display for information on fuel mileage, engine hours spent idling, plus a new route record feature that analyses user-definable routes, and optional GPS;

The Clifford remote control security power lock, which is a waterproof keychain remote control with a panic button, remote keyless entry, remote engine/heater/AC starting, audible warning and other security options;

Clarion Radio options;

Webasto’s ThermoCooler system;

Updated interior cab colors – black and tan;

A privacy curtain that closes off side windows and the windshield;

and, relocation of the sleeper heater in several models. n

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  • G’day mate, I have been driving a WS 4800 FX with Tuf Trac suspension, on and off road lately. The traction on steep/dusty/rocky hills is unbelievable, never have to reach for power divider, puts “ALL AIRBAG” to shame, I would say, just about the best suspension around!, even the ride unladen is not that bad.