The Freightliner Business Class M2 was slightly redesigned in 2010 and it was developed for both medium and heavy duty vocational applications requiring a front engine PTO and front frame extensions. The M2 106 was designed for easy maintenance, and features easily accessible components, as well as see-through fluid reservoirs, to make inspection and service easier.
The M2 106 is one of the most versatile truck build by the American manufacturer and can be used for refuse collection, snow plowing, crane or other utility operations and fire/emergency needs. The truck has a starting price of $70,390.00 and is available in three cab configuration including Day Cab, Extended Cab and Crew Cab.
The Freightliner Business Class M2 features a conventional cab design which is typical for the US market.
The new generation Business Class M2 features a lightweight and durable aluminum cab that is strong and non-corrosive. Moreover, it also received a new fiberglass hood with re-styled front fenders which give the truck a rugged look.
The big vertical grille has received a chromed treatment which gives the truck a touch of exclusivity. Unlike other vehicles in the segment, the Business Class M2 has a more serene and subdued look which is further enhanced by its round curves and clean body panels. However, thanks to its slippery shape the truck has a low drag coefficient and is among the most aerodynamic models in its class.
The headlights are also pretty shy and except for their chromed surroundings they don’t have any special design treatment worth to be mentioned. However, we like the shiny metallic bumper, as its able to ad a bit of toughness to the overall design. Moreover, for practicality purposes the bumper is made of three-pieces in order to allow partial replacement if needed.
After the 2010 facelift the truck received a larger radiator, new hood and improved headlights for better vision during the night missions.
The truck has a pretty low grand clearance and slip resistant dual steps which offer easy access into the cab. We aren’t big fans of the cluttered dashboard and its plane design, but even if the overall ergonomy isn’t the best in class, you have access to most of the controls without too much drama. For a better ergonomy you can opt for a wing dash with design which brings controls and gauges closer to the driver and provides space for up to eight more switches.
The plastics aren’t great either and the fit and finish is also pretty poor compared with some competitors. However, the dash structure was designed with fewer sections, in order to minimize the rattle effects and we have to recognize that it works pretty well and the truck can run all day long without even a squeak coming from the dash.
Even after the recent facelift, we still find the four spoke steering wheel dated and much too big to called comfortable.
The instrument cluster is the best part of the dash and we don’t have any complains about it. It features big analog gauges with LED lights for easy readability.
We don’t have any complains about the space as the cab is wide and deep, offering adequate leg- and head-room. The seats are also pretty comfortable and offer proper back support, although some extra side support would’ve been welcomed. The driving position is pretty comfortable and for more convenience the steering wheel can be adjusted for reach and rake, using a foot controlled pedal which permits you to find your favorite position without taking the hands off the wheel. The high driving position offers a superb visibility, while the side mirrors are also useful and have minimum blind spots. Moreover, for a better all round visibility there are also available optional door-mounted down-view mirrors and a passenger door lower window.
The truck is equipped with a capable heating and air conditioning system which works fairly good and can keep a constant air flow for uniform temperature control throughout the cab.
As you’ve probably expected the storage spaces aren’t a problem either. Hence, the Business Class M2 offers plenty of cubby holes, storage boxes, door pockets and even a generous glove box where you can deposit whatever you want. Different items can also be stored in the overhead console that comes standard or in the optional floor-mounted compartment that features a writing surface, printer provision and a 12-volt power outlet.
Engines and transmissions
Thanks to the 2010 facelift the Business Class M2 106Vcrecieved a new 1,200 square-inch radiator which can accommodate up to 380hp with automatic transmission and up to 80,000 pounds GVW. The radiator is mounted to the engine and sits above the top of the frame, allowing for optimal cooling and reliability. Moreover, this also allows the front engine PTO shaft to run below the radiator.
The Freightliner Business Class M2 is available with three Cummins Engines namely the ISB6.7, ISC8.3 and ISL9 units.
The common rail Cummins ISB6.7 diesel engine develops between 200–325 HP with a torque range of 520–750 lb-ft.
The Cummins ISC8.3 Engine is famous thanks to its high power to weight ratio and features replaceable wet liners, an XPI fuel system and the Cummins Aftertreatment system. The engine offers a power range between 260-350 hp with peak torques of 660 -1000 lb-ft.
The Cummins ISL9 is the strongest engine available for the Business Class M2 and its fitted with wet liners, XPI fuel system and an Electronic Control Module (ECM). The unit can develop 345 or 380 Hp with torque figures of 1150 and 1300 lb-ft respectively.
The engines cab be combined with Eaton Fuller manual gearboxes with 5-, 6-, 9-, 10-, 11- or 13-speeds. Moreover the truck is also available with Eaton Fuller AutoShift or UltraShift both with 10 speeds. The automatic transmission comes from Allison and the Business class is available with the 1000, 2000, 3000 and 4000 series.
|Cummins ISB||200 - 360 hp||520 - 800 ft.-lbs.|
|Cummins ISC||260 - 380 hp||660 -1,050 ft.-lbs.|
|Cummins ISL G (natural gas)||320 hp||1,000 ft.-lbs.|
|Detroit Diesel||DD13 350 - 450 hp||1,250 -1,650 ft.-lbs.|
Ride and suspensions
The truck is equipped with standard multi leaf air suspensions with shock absorbers. Besides this standard configuration the Business Series M2 can be also fitted with optional spring or air suspensions including Freightliner’s TufTrac and AirLiner rear suspensions rated up to 52,000 pounds.
Equipped with the suspensions the truck’s ride is a bit bumpy and unsettled but the ride improves when the truck transports some load at the back.
The steering is pretty good and offers a sharp response. The truck is pretty easy to drive on the narrow city streets as it features a 55-degrees wheel cut, a set-back front axle and a swept-back bumper. Moreover, on the road, the steering avoids feeling overly light even at highway speeds.
The Freightliner Business Class M2 is able to deal with a lot of heavy works without problems. The truck’s build quality may not be the best in the business and we’ve also seen better cabs at some of its rivals. However, this doesn’t’ mean that the M2 is less performant. The truck is available with a wide range of engines and transmissions so its versatility is out of the question. Moreover, the chassis is strongly built and can the vehicle has a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) that can go up to 80,000 pounds.