With the launch of its new on-highway truck, Anthem, Mack Trucks is seeking to recapture a slice of the Class 8 market share lost to rivals in the over-the-road segment in recent years.
The company revealed its new Anthem truck at the Mack Global Dealer Summit on Wednesday in Allentown, Penn.
The Greensboro, N.C., truck manufacturer said the new vehicle, which it expects to become its flagship, will offer a series of improvements over its existing heavy-duty line.
The Anthem replaces the Pinnacle Axle Back that was introduced in 2005.
“We have been a less than 2 percent market share player in the long-haul industry and that will grow with the release of this new truck,” Jonathan Randall, Mack’s senior vice president for North American sales, told Trucks.com.
Through the first half of 2017, Mack accounted for about 8.5 percent of Class 8 truck sales, including long haul trucks and various work trucks, according to WardsAuto, an industry research firm. Freightliner is the market leader, with about 37.5 percent of Class 8 sales and dominates the long-haul market.
Last year, Daimler Trucks North America unveiled the latest model of its flagship Freightliner Cascadia semi-truck, the first full redesign of the trucking industry workhorse since its introduction in 2007. Other competitors also are launching new trucks.
In July, Volvo Trucks unveiled of its Volvo VNL semi-truck, the first full redesign since 1996. Navistar International Corp brought out its International LT Series long-haul truck last year, replacing the aging ProStar,
Mack, a 117-year-old company and division of Volvo Trucks, will build the new line of its Anthem trucks at its Lehigh Valley Plant, having invested more than $84 million to overhaul the factory.
Mack also invested $3 million in its Mack Customer Center in Allentown, “which allows customers to come in and visit our brand interactively, as well as take test drives on our test track around it,” Randall said.
The truck maker said the Anthem could help companies attract and retain drivers as turnover is a major issue in the trucking industry.
“Every detail on the Anthem was designed with purpose,” Randall said. “We surveyed thousands of drivers and incorporated their feedback to deliver a functional, strong, efficient highway truck with an authentic design unlike anything on the road today.”
The Anthem is available in several different offerings, including its 70-inch sleeper, 48-inch sleeper and a day cab.
Engine choices include the 13-liter Mack MP8 engine, which produces 505 horsepower and 1,860 pound-feet of torque, and the 11-liter Mack MP7 that makes 425 horsepower and 1,560 pound-feet of torque.
Mack is forecasting 3 percent or better fuel economy with its 70-inch sleeper and its MP 8 engine, over the comparable truck it replaces. If an turbocompound engine is added to the 70-inch sleeper, it can gain up to 11.8 percent better fuel economy. Its new day cab trucks can get 1.5 percent better fuel economy just from the aerodynamics on the trucks, Randall said.
“It’s about making sure we are offering the latest and greatest technology that we can and the best operating efficiency that we possibly can,” Randall said.
The Anthem is also more aerodynamic than the previous model.
It’s not going to look like any other truck that’s out on the road already, Randall said.
“The great thing about it is it keeps its bold design, but it’s still very much a Mack,” he said. “If you look at it and you didn’t have the grille or the bulldog on the hood of it you would still know it was a Mack.”