Mack Trucks is offering a new package for Mack Over The Air customers that allows for more frequent remote software updates and the setting of vehicle parameters.
The Mack Parameter Plus package is now available for order, enabling customers to make up to 50 parameter updates per 12-month period on all model year 2018 and newer Mack vehicles equipped with Mack GuardDog Connect. Previously, customers were able to make just two parameter updates per year as part of their Uptime contract subscription. Mack Parameter Plus also is available for previously purchased vehicles with Mack EPA 2017 engines.
There is no limit for Mack-initiated software updates used to continuously enhance product performance. A remote parameter change be set in a short amount of time, such as when a driver is at lunch, as long as the key is in the ignition and the truck is parked. Mack made the announcement during The Work Truck Show at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.
“We consistently seek out ways to improve Uptime for our customers,” said John Walsh, vice president of marketing for Mack Trucks. “Mack Parameter Plus enables customers to bundle their parameter updates into a cost-effective package, and since it’s built on Mack Over The Air capabilities, customers’ valuable schedules are not disrupted while the parameters are set. Parameters help tailor the truck to the job and help customers comply with regulations such as road speed and idle shutdown. ”
Standard Shock Absorbers
At the Work Truck Show, Mack also announced that factory-installed auxiliary axles on Mack Granite models now feature standard shock absorbers. The shock absorbers help reduce excessive vibrations and can improve durability of the auxiliary axles and the entire vehicle.
They also help prevent uncontrolled axle hop and increase auxiliary axle tire life, cutting tire costs for customers. The smoother operation reduces vibration transferred to the cab which can also improve driver comfort.
“Mack’s factory-installed auxiliary axle options offer an integrated solution that improves lead time to customers who need to meet stringent bridge laws,” said Tim Wrinkle, Mack Trucks construction product manager. “And now, with standard shock absorbers, we’re lowering those customers’ total cost of ownership, while improving the everyday comfort of their drivers.”
Mack factory-installed auxiliary axles are tested and validated to Mack standards, and feature Huck Bolt installation for added durability. The auxiliary axles are factory aligned and their operation is fully integrated. In addition to laser-engraved axle up/down switches on the dash, operation of the axle is preprogramed to raise when reverse is selected and during key-off.
Mack’s factory-installed auxiliary axles with standard shock absorbers are available on Mack Granite axle forward and axle back models.
Mack Looks Foward
John Walsh, vice president of marketing, gave a brief business update. He said construction spending in the U.S. remains up “at very good levels and we expect that to continue. That’s really good news for Mack.”
According to Walsh, Class 8 sales this year will — on the surface — look exactly like last year’s. “The [North American] Class 8 market saw 310,000 retail sales n 2018. That was the strongest year ever,” he said. “This year will also be strong; our forecast for 2019 is 310,000 retail sales again. However, that will not be based on new orders, but on the order backlog we have to work through.” He noted that that’s the case across the board for Class 8 truck makers.
As for highlights of last year, Walsh said the rollout of the new Anthem highway tractor helped drive up the sleeper order intake rate for Mack by 221% in 2018. Last year, the truck maker also achieved an 18% increase in retail sales and a 40% jump in its build rate.