Tatra is highly appreciated for its solid and rugged trucks. While there are a lot of fire trucks out there, there aren’t many models that can stack up with confidence against the 815 model build by Tata.
The most important weapon needed in firefighting operations, is without a doubt the water tender truck. The volume of water that can be carried by a fire truck could make the difference between a few pieces of burned wood or a full scale inferno and at this part Tatra’s truck receives high marks being able to transport up to 9000 l of water.
The Tatra T 815 water tender is built by THT, s.r.o. Polička, a leading Central European specialist in firefighting vehicles. Using the newest Tatra chassis, the fire truck it is designed to transport large quantities of extinguishing agents and 1+3 firefighting crew.
The Tatra Jamal is a three-axle truck with conventional cab configuration which is available as a tipper or construction dump designed to tackle the most difficult construction sites.
This vehicle is part of the heavy duty category engineered for off-road operation and off-road transport of loads. The truck’s body volume is 14 m3 with a payload of approximately 24 t. The Jamal can be also driven or public roads, but the signaling lights must be permanently on.
Powered by a 12 litre, air cooled, turbocharged V8, 440 hp diesel engine the Jamal has the potential to deal with the biggest payloads and the hardest working conditions without backing down.
Volvo’s FH truck has led a platoon test of vehicles on a public road in Barcelona, Spain as part of the SARTRE (Safe Road Trains for the Environment) project.
This was the first ever test drive of a road train with both trucks and cars rolling on a public road. The test convoy was able to cover a distance of 200 kilometres (125 miles) in one day.
Andreas Ekfjorden, Project Manager for Volvo Trucks in the SARTRE project and test driver of the lead truck in Spain declared “The truck behaved exactly as expected, and the following vehicles responded just as planned. It was great to be a part of this landmark event.”
In the SARTRE project the trucks use radars and cameras to stay posted on the lead truck maneuvers. The official press release says that “by adding wireless communication, all the vehicles in the platoon ‘mimic’ the lead truck – accelerating, braking and turning in exactly the same way as the lead vehicle”.
The driver of the leading truck has a major role in the SARTRE project as he holds the responsibility for the entire platoon in order to permit the other drivers to relax and follow its lead.
The environmental impact of a road train is lower than that of today’s conventional traffic system, since the following vehicles are close behind the truck and each other and all of them can benefit of lower air drag.
“The focus on driver environment is at the very core of Volvo Trucks’ R&D work. Making the truck a safer workplace and supporting the driver is one of the most efficient ways for us to contribute to road safety. It is also part of our ultimate goal: zero accidents with Volvo Trucks. Our participation in the SARTRE project is a natural extension of that philosophy,” says Carl Johan Almqvist, Traffic & Product Safety Director, Volvo Trucks.
The SARTRE project was initiated in 2009 and until now, the vehicles in the project have covered a total of 10,000 kilometers.
In 2009 the old Tatra Terrno 1 benefitted from a small facelift, as it received improved aerodynamics and a host of technical upgrades.
The Terrno 1 features a cab over engine configuration and is offered with a choice of 4x4, 6x4, 6x6 and 8x8 drives. Due to its versatile character, the medium duty truck can be used for various applications on any terrains as its King Frame combined suspension (mechanical leaf or coil springs and high-pressure air bellows) gives it capable off road abilities.
For Tatra it was very hard to survive to the difficult economic conditions and had also need to face a very strong competition coming from its European drivers. Luckily, in 2011 DAF acquired 19% ownership in TATRA and now it also supplies engines and cabs for the Czech manufacturer.
Tatra’s main product is now sold globally under the name of Phoenix. The Tatra Phoenix is part of the heavy duty league and can carry massive loads on both regular roads or on harsh terrains.
The truck features a unique chassis design which requires no sub-frame for affixing tipper body. This translates into more payload capacity hence lower costs per km.
Tata decided to take a stab at the heavy duty segment and has come up with the Prima truck which will compete in the 40 tonnes segment with famous names like Scania, Volvo, Iveco and even Mercedes.
Tata plans to sell its heavy duty truck globally and not only in India and this is why it paid maximum attention in the developing process. The Tata Prima’s main objective is to combine strong performances with lower prices featuring strong engines and a generous load capacity. Tata claims that the Prima can cover 600 km with a single driver and 900 km with two drivers in a day.
The Chinese manufacturers are starting to conquer more and more markets and their vehicles have finally begun to offer satisfactory performances and prove that these guys are fast learners. However, some faults regarding the build quality and reliability still remain, but some sacrifices had to be done to keep the price as cheap as possible.
The new generation of Heavy Duty trucks from JAC is a major improvement over the previous models, but while we appreciated the technical upgrade and the more comfortable cabin, we’ll have to criticize the exterior design. There isn’t anything inherently wrong with it, but it’s almost identical with Scania’s trucks and you won’t need to be an expert to spot the resemblance.
CAT has officially announced introduction of the new 15L CT15 engine which will be offered together with the CT11 and CT13 units for the CT660 heavy duty truck. The new engine develops a maximum output of 550 hp with a peak torque of 1,850 lbs.-ft achieved at 2100 rpm.
To be able to offer these superior performances, the engine uses sequential turbochargers and a high pressure common rail fuel system. Moreover, interstage cooling between turbochargers increases air density to maintain power as speeds increase. The CT15 uses an EGR system to reduce the emissions and meets EPA 2010 requirements without the need of additives (AdBlue).
The engine is perfectly suited for heavy haul operations as it offers a massive pulling power from relatively low revs.
George Taylor, director of the Caterpillar Global On-Highway Truck Group said, “The CT15 engine is the perfect power solution for heavy-duty applications and extreme environments. Cat vocational truck customers can count on the CT15 for years of reliable, durable operation, which translates into a longer-lasting truck and higher resale value.”
The new CAT CT15 engine is also offered with a capable engine brake than provides a retarding power of up to 600 hp being among the strongest in this class. Besides improving the stopping power, the engine brake also keeps the use of service brakes to minimum.
Not many of you heard about JAC, mostly because it’s a Chinese manufacturer which until recently didn’t managed to catch much attention. The company however, has recently made a joint venture with Navistar and started to use Cummins engines for its lineup of trucks.
At the moment, JAC is also in full expansion and plans to conquer new markets. Its lineup of vehicles includes light, medium and heavy duty models and all of them are fairly versatile.
The Heavy duty range of trucks is offered in tractor, mixer, dump and lorry configurations with gross vehicle weights ranging from 13000 kg to 50000 kg.
More and more truck manufactures turn their head towards efficient technologies and recently Volvo decided to design its own 13 liter liquefied natural gas (LNG) engine. The engine will be designed especially for the North American market and according to the press release it will be launched on the market in 2014.
The LNG engine consumes less fuel than the current conventional natural gas powered engines. Moreover, the company is also planning to introduce a clean technology which will run on DME (dimethyl ether) a new fuel that can be produced from natural gas.
Ron Huibers, president of Volvo Trucks North American Sales & Marketing declared: “Despite the near-term infrastructure questions regarding widespread adoption of natural gas as a heavy-duty truck fuel, it is clear this segment will grow over the next several years. We’re already delivering factory-built CNG-powered trucks and as the long-haul fueling infrastructure develops, the advanced technology in our new LNG engine will provide increased range and improved fuel efficiency in a seamlessly integrated Volvo powertrain.”