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The new Actros, the giant is back
Efficiency, performance, fuel consumption. These are the words of the order which his majesty Mercedes has followed in the realization of the new Astros, the giant of the road of the Star range. In the course of the last few decades, its consumption is constantly reduced. In the case of long-range transport, for example, from 2011 until the introduction of the new Actros in 2019 has been registered a reduction of 15%. Well, the new version carries on this same road, making the record even lower fuel consumption compared to previous model: up to 3% less on the highway, and even up to 5% in the suburban transport.
The credit should be attributed to the improved management of Cruise control and gear shift on the part of the Predictive Powertrain Control (PPC) as well as the new relationships to the bridge and to the substantial improvements in aerodynamic made to the cab of the truck.

Just one figure to give evidence of the importance of the component of aerodynamics: in the case of one of the current truck with cab-over-engine, and used in the long-range transport on the territory of europe, about a third of the available mechanical energy is used to overcome aerodynamic resistance. And in the case of the new Actros this amounts to say that the MirrorCam, which have replaced the traditional rear-view mirrors, contributing to reduce fuel consumption by up to 1.5%. A similar contribution is also given by the new deflectors of the concave shape of the cockpit.

These improvements are also the result of intensive tests performed in the wind tunnel of the Daimler AG in Untertürkheim, where engineers simulated the conditions of the flows of the air on the truck with the aim of optimizing the coefficient Cx, that is, the coefficient of aerodynamic resistance, and consequently, consumption. The tests performed in the wind tunnel have provided important information, especially with regard to the MirrorCam: on the one hand for the purposes of the aerodynamic shape of the two arms of the cameras and from the other in relation to the positioning of the same on the left and right side of the cockpit. In contrast to the mirrors, traditional, in fact, on the new Actros, the arms are fixed on the frame of the roof.

It was also a matter of finding a solution to prevent the diffused light coming from above reduces the performance of the cameras. In the context of these tests, the configuration of the winning is resulted that based on the roof small, which is now equipped with the arms of the MirrorCam. The engineers have provided a crucial contribution also for the development of new flaps of the concave shape of the cockpit, which would allow the new Actros consumes less fuel to all its predecessors.

in Addition to the reduction of consumption, in the context of CFD analysis, and during their tests in the wind tunnel, engineers also focused on another aspect: the protection contamination output, with an eye for the relevant zones for the purposes of safety, such as the windshield and the side windows as well as the lenses of the arms of cameras. The aerodynamics of the car exerts an influence on the amount of dirt produced from the vehicle in front is from the right, which remains attached to the medium.

The wind tunnel in Untertürkheim, is at the disposal of the workers in the development of Mercedes-Benz for eight decades, but thanks to appropriate measures of modernisation is still a system of state-of-the-art. Two dc electric motors with a power unit of 250 kW to activate the nine blades of the axial fan, the diameter of which measured 8.5 meters: the energy that flows is enough to generate winds up to force 17. Approximately 9,000 m3 of air move horizontally within a channel ring 125-meter-long.

within the test area, the vehicle is positioned on a rotating disk with a diameter of twelve metres, which causes the vehicle to be invested by the flow of air is not only frontally but also laterally to any required angle. A roller test bench, and a scale of six components, which allows to determine the several forces with extreme precision, including the power of the air, are integrated in the rotating disk. The forces are transmitted through levers and mechanical linkages to a series of capsules, force measuring, that allow their evaluation.

the aerodynamics of The new Actros is one of the reasons that has allowed it to compete for the title of ‘International Truck of the Year 2020’. The jury, which awards the most important award at european level in the segment of commercial vehicles, has put in evidence in addition to the greater efficiency, even all the progress made in the area of assistance systems and safety and connectivity. Among the innovations introduced at the edge of the Actros include the Active Drive Assist, which allows the guide partially automated in all ranges of speed, the system of emergency brake assist improved Active Brake Assist 5, plank multimedia, fully connected network, as well as the intelligent management of the Cruise control and gear shift on the part of the Predictive Powertrain Control.

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