by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte

Daimler commercial vehicles at the RAI 2012 in Amsterdam

Over three different exhibition stands, Daimler AG will be exhibiting a total of 19 commercial vehicles from the Mercedes-Benz and Fuso brands at this year's RAI in Amsterdam from 17 through to 21 April 2012.

Mercedes-Benz Vans will be on show at stand 04.110 in the Oosthalle. Mercedes-Benz Trucks will be presented in the Europahalle at stand 01.220. Fuso Canter Trucks will be exhibited near to the Mercedes-Benz Trucks at stand 01.230. The Dutch market for commercial vehicles is an interesting one as Dutch delivery and logistics firms always provide the European transport branch with innovative ways of doing things.

Mercedes-Benz Vans at the RAI 2012

In Amsterdam, four Vitos, two Vianos and three Sprinters will be exhibited. A 3D model of the new Citan urban delivery van will be presented outside hall 1.

The Vito E-Cell is of particular interest for those seeking locally emission-free transport solutions in inner cities. The Vito E-CELL crewbus is the world's first seven-seater vehicle which makes emission-free driving a possibility as standard ex-works. With its 130 km range, it is particulary suited for use in environmentally sensitive areas, such as pedestrianised zones. The electric motor (60 kW; 280 Nm max. torque), the power electronics, as well as the transformer and charger unit are all housed under the bonnet. Power is transferred to the wheels of the front axle. The powerful lithium ion traction batteries find their place under the floor of the passenger compartment. The nominal voltage is 380 V and the capacity 36 kWh. The batteries of the Vito E-CELL are charged from a 380/400 V supply, which takes a maximum of six hours. If necessary, the batteries can also be charged at a later stage from a 230 V supply. Recuperation also helps additionally charge the battery whilst the vehicle is in motion. The batteries are protected by a crash element. If an airbag is deployed, the high-voltage technology is automatically disabled. 

The new Mercedes-Benz Limited Edition Viano PEARL demonstrates the possibilities of a luxurious large-capacity vehicle. This range-topping Viano combines both space and exclusivity. The Viano PEARL's luxurious interior with specially selected materials and its dynamic exterior both set new standards. Two-tone 19-inch light-alloy wheels with 245/45 R 19 tyres further highlight the dynamism of the Limited Edition Viano PEARL. Thanks to its V6 diesel engine, the Limited Edition Viano PEARL CDI 3.0 BlueEfficiency develops 165 kW (224 hp) of power; a superior level of power with low fuel consumption. The top-of-the-line Viano model is alternatively available with a 3.5 l V6 petrol engine, which puts out 190 kW (258 hp) of power. In both variants, this power is transferred via an automatic transmission.

The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter starts in spring 2012 with several product improvements which underline its desire to be the leader in the vans segment. It is the first van in the world which can be ordered with a seven-speed automatic torque converter. The new 7G-TRONIC transmission will be available worldwide as an option on the van from the beginning of this year. The seven-speed automatic features fully electronic control and, despite having already proved itself in many Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars, the system has now been adapted to the demands of the vans segment. The advantage of this new transmission with its seven stages is the combination of a broad gear ratio spread with a close graduation of the gears. In practice, this means that a small ratio in first gear ensures a dynamic start. At high speeds, however, the Sprinter drives fuel-efficiently, with low emissions and low noise levels thanks to its low engine speeds.

FleetBoard telematics for the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter can be fitted ex-works as part of the original equipment. Experience in short-radius distribution has shown that fuel consumption and CO2 emissions can be reduced by up to 30 percent if the vehicle is driven in an economical way.

Mercedes-Benz at the Bedrijfsauto RAI

With five Mercedes-Benz trucks being exhibited in Amsterdam, a small selection from the delivery programme of the world's largest truck manufacturer will be on show. With the Dutch market traditionally being a market for cross-European long-distance delivery firms, three variants of the new Actos will be shown: 1842 LS Super Stream Space, 1842 Stream Space and 1851 Giga Space.
For low-emissions short-radius distribution, there will be a small series of the Atego 1222 L BlueTec Hybrid. The vehicles presented will be rounded off by the tried and tested Actros 4144 Tipper construction truck with the WideSpread chassis specific to the Dutch market.

All variants of the new Mercedes-Benz Actros are thoroughbread long-distance transport vehicles. Specially designed for use as a long-distance vehicle, a modular system forms the basis of the new Actros. This system includes seven spacious cabs, of which five with a level floor. Innovative interior design ideas, such as the separation of work and living areas, are characteristic of the new cab. A new cockpit which is as functional as it is attractive, a new, cleaner, more responsive and more efficient straight six-cylinder engine with additional torque reserves, a new frame and a dynamic chassis, as well as a further increased level of safety mean that the new Actros is a true innovator.

The new Actros is the first and, up to now, the only truck which has been developed to consistently meet the Euro VI emissions standard. Last year's record run over 10 000 km between Rotterdam and Stettin proved that: in the optional Euro V variant, the fuel consumption was around 7.6 percent less than that of its predecessor; in the Euro VI variant, fuel consumption was around 4.6 percent less and this was achieved with a reduction in AdBlue consumption of 40 percent. The newly developed heavy-duty engines of the new Actros also set standards. The new BlueEfficiency Power engine generation from Mercedes-Benz will, from the very beginning, meet the Euro VI emissions norms. The first member of the new engine family is the straight six-cylinder Mercedes-Benz OM 471 with power outputs from 310 kW (421 hp) to 375 kW (510 hp) and torque from 2 100 to 2 500 Nm. A high torque even at engine speeds below 1 000 rpm and almost full power at 1 400 rpm make for excellent driveability. As a result of the high demands of the Euro VI norm, Mercedes-Benz employs extensive exhaust gas aftertreatment, which comprises SCR technology with AdBlue injection without compressed air, cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and a particulate filter. Extraordinary robustness and longevity are part of the reason the engine is so economical, as well as a service interval of up to 150 000 kilometres.

An international jury of experts awarded the new Mercedes-Benz Actros the title of "Truck of the Year 2012". The commercial vehicle journalists from 24 countries elected the flagship Mercedes-Benz best truck of the year for the fourth time. In 1997, the first Actros started off the success story, with its successors in 2004 and 2009 also picking up the most votes.

The Mercedes-Benz Atego 1222 L BlueTec Hybrid is also more efficient in times when the price of fuel keeps on rising.

With its innovative Hybrid drive, the Mercedes-Benz Atego allows Daimler AG to offer this technology, with its particulary low emissions, as standard ex-works in Europe; thereby promoting sustainable goods transport solutions. The basis of the Hybrid version is the Atego 1222 L Euro V: it already fulfils the environmentally friendly EEV standard for particularly reduced particulate emissions and can therefore already be driven on German roads without having to pay tolls. Its compact and light four-cylinder 4.8 l diesel engine puts out 160 kW (218 hp). Water-cooled electric motors with a maximum power of 44 kW round off the offering. The electric power for these is supplied by powerful lithium-ion batteries with a high energy density.

The electric motor is located behind the engine and clutch, but in front of the transmission. This construction allows both drive technologies to drive the vehicle, be it either individually or simultaneously. This parallel-hybrid architecture allows purely electric driving, recuperation, boost mode with the help of the electric motor and optimisation of the diesel engine's characteristic curve.
The diesel engine's drive power is actuated via a clutch between the diesel engine and the electric motor. Before actuation, the diesel engine is solely used to drive ancillary equipment. This not only drastically reduces fuel consumption and exhaust gas emissions by up to 15 percent, but also leads to a reduction in noise pollution. Use of the engine's automatic start/stop feature also brings consumption, emissions and noise levels down to zero when stopped at traffic lights.

In 2011, to put this important technology of the future through its paces, the first 50 Atego BlueTec Hybrid vehicles were delivered to customers involved in short-radius distribution. At the IAA in 2010, the Atego BlueTec Hybrid was elected "Truck of the Year 2011" by an international jury of specialists.

The Actros 4144 K WideSpread will be displayed for use in the Dutch construction industry. Special conversions with up to five axles are typical of the Dutch tipper market. Mercedes-Benz now delivers the WideSpread chassis ex-works. The delivery programme comprises models with three, four and five axles, additionally with optional 6x4 through 10x8 drive systems. The chassis is fitted with the Dynamic Truck and Trailer Suspension. The Electronic Truck Steering additionally allows the last axle to be steered up to speeds of 45 km/h.

The new Canter 4x4 all-wheel-drive at the Fuso stand

The third of the Daimler AG exhibition stands will present the vehicles of the Fuso brand. A total of five Fuso Canter vehicles will be shown, of which two models in the new all-wheel-drive 4x4 version. The conventionally rear-wheel-driven light truck with high payload capacity is now complemented by this variant with improved traction which features engageable all-wheel drive.

Its off-road capabilities make the Fuso Canter 4×4 the ideal choice for all applications where operation on unsurfaced roads is required, for example on construction sites, in the energy supply sector and in service with the fire brigade. For municipal authorities, it lends itself to use as a winter service vehicle with snowplough and salt spreader. Its width of a mere two metres means that it can also negotiate narrow openings with ease. The Canter 4×4, model designation 6C18, will be offered with a permissible gross vehicle weight of 6.5 tonnes, a two-metre wide comfort cab and a power output of 129 kW (175 hp). The all-wheel drive can be selected and deselected during a journey, thereby ensuring fuel-efficient operation. A differential lock for the rear axle is fitted as standard.

The new Fuso Canter 4×4 is powered by a four-cylinder turbo diesel engine with Euro V and EEV certification. Only the most powerful version of this 3-litre engine – developing 129 kW (175 hp) at 3 500 rpm – is installed on the all-wheel drive model. It boasts a maximum full-load torque of 430 Nm which is available constantly from 1 600 to 2 900 rpm.

In addition to SCR exhaust aftertreatment technology, a combination of exhaust gas recirculation and fully automatic particulate filter regeneration ensures optimum emissions performance. If the vehicle is being used mainly for very short trips, manual regeneration of the particulate filter may be necessary owing to the low engine temperatures.

The Canter 4×4 features the same traditional strengths as the Canter 4×2, namely excellent manoeuvrability, a space-saving cab-over-engine design, good visibility thanks to low windows and a short front overhang, a robust construction, a compact joystick shift lever on the dashboard, straightforward maintenance thanks to a tilting cab which provides easy access to the main assemblies, enhanced safety and reduced wear thanks to the standard-fitted exhaust brake.

Credits: Daimler AG

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