2013 Mack Pinnacle

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It might be Mack’s first apearance in our Ultimate Test Drive video series, but it certainly won’t be their last judging by how much freelance trucking journalist, Jim Park, seemed to enjoy getting behind the wheel of this stunning Mack Pinnacle tractor.  

Joined by Dave McKenna, Mack’s Director of Powertrain Sales, Jim Park hit Ontario’s Hwy 401 to put Mack’s Super Econodyne powertrain package to the test.  In this three-part, in-depth feature, Jim spends most of part one delving into the engine’s new power mapping and the transmission’s contribution to the improved fuel economy, and the benefits of a low-speed drivetrain.

In parts two and three, Jim turns his attention to Mack’s new, low-speed Super Econodyne drivetrain package, which they claim can improve the tractor’s fuel efficiency by as much as 3.5 percent.  With the key component being integration, Mack brought together the MP8-445SE engine, the Mack mDRIVE automated manual transmission and Mack C125 drive axles, along with some fancy reprogramming of the engine and transmission software for optimum efficiency.

Coming additions to our Ultimate Test Drive series are Kenworth’s New T680 and the Freightliner Cascadia Evolution with the DT12 automated manual transmission. You won’t want to miss those either. So stay tuned.

And if you haven’t already, make sure to check out the other test drives in our Ultimate Test Drive series.


Volvo VN 780
Freightliner Cascadia
Kenworth T680


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Jim Park was a CDL driver and owner-operator from 1978 until 1998, when he began his second career as a trucking journalist. During that career transition, he hosted an overnight radio show on a Hamilton, Ontario radio station and later went on to anchor the trucking news in SiriusXM's Road Dog Trucking channel. Jim is a regular contributor to Today's Trucking and Trucknews.com, and produces Focus On and On the Spot test drive videos.

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