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Mack debuts Advantage highway chassis

LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- Mack Trucks, Inc. recently unveiled its new chassis, called Advantage, which the company is intr...

LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Mack Trucks, Inc. recently unveiled its new chassis, called Advantage, which the company is introducing to better serve the needs of highway customers.

The new chassis will be used in all Mack Vision and CH models.

"Customer-driven innovation has always been key to our success," said Tom Kelly, Mack vice president of marketing. "And this new chassis continues that tradition. The various features we’ve incorporated into Advantage result in a wide range of benefits that can really have a positive impact on a customer’s bottom line."

As an example, company officials pointed to the variety of Advantage frame rail options, which give customers the ability to more precisely match rail size to their specific applications.

"With Advantage, customers can choose from four rail options6 mm, 7 mm, 8 mm and 9.5 mmall with increased resistance bending moment, or RBM," said Tom Davis, Mack marketing manager for highway products. "The increased RBM provides greater strength. Weight-sensitive bulk haulers will be pleased with the addition of the 7 mm rail, which has a higher RBM than our current 8 mm, but, depending upon wheelbase, is up to 100 pounds lighter. Less chassis weight means more payload."

Advantage also provides up to 50-degree outside wheel cuts, dramatically improving turning diameter. For example, an Advantage-equipped vehicle with a 185-inch wheelbase could have an improvement of up to 15 feet in turning diameter-a very significant number for customers who maneuver in and out of tight spaces.

Advantage offers enhanced riding and handling as well, attributable to a variety of features. The standard front taper leaf suspension has new taper leaf springs spaced slightly apart to reduce friction. And the spring rate has been reduced to provide a softer ride. An optional Hendrickson AIRTEK air-ride front axle-suspension combination not only provides a smooth ride, but additional weight savings as well.

Excessive interior noise and vibration result in driver fatigue. Thanks to the Advantage combination of a new engine support crossmember and new cab mounting system, as well as new sound dampening material Mack is using in its cabs, noise and vibration levels have been significantly reduced.

New Advantage rear engine mounts simplify transmission removal and greatly reduce the amount of time it takes to do so. And the combination of the new engine mounts and new taper leaf front suspension allows the engine to sit lower in the frame, reducing overall center of gravity and improving handling.

Additional Advantage features and benefits include:
 Wider front frame section allowing for a 10% larger cooling system
 MaxLite rear air suspension with outboard-mounted shocks for increased stability and a more accessible ride height adjustment
 Color-coded lines for ease-of-service
 Push-to-Connect fittings to reduce the risk of air leaks
 Charge air cooler piping re-routed to avoid potential damage from road debris
 New Lo-Pro deckplate that accommodates lower 5th wheel heights and meets driver demand for a surface that is easier on the kneesthe driveshaft is also covered to help keep debris from being thrown up on to the deckplate

Company officials also noted that there will be no upcharge associated with Advantage, meaning customers can get all of the aforementioned benefits at no additional cost.

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