Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz Brazil has revealed its new, locally modified and built Actros heavy truck at Fenatran, the largest commercial vehicle and transportation fair in Latin America.

The truck uses global technology and platforms and includes devices such as the MirrorCam, which replaces the main and wide angle mirrors and ensures a vast improvement in safety, vehicle handling and aerodynamics.

After Brazil customer feedback, market specific items were integrated into the Actros.

“Our new Actros from Brazil was developed especially for customers in Latin America. When it is launched on the market next year, it will set new standards of efficiency, safety and connectivity,” claimed Stefan Buchner, head of Mercedes-Benz Trucks.

“The timing is perfect: the truck market in Brazil is recovering and we anticipate a significant increase in our truck sales this year. We have always believed in Brazil and continued to invest there throughout the years. And we will continue to do so in the future as well.”

Mercedes-Benz Brazil is spending around EUR600m on its Brazilian commercial vehicle business to 2022. Emphasis is on modernising the product range but investment is also going into digital services and into the two largest factories in Sao Bernardo do Campo and Juiz de Fora.

Daimler Trucks Brazil achieved a market share of 30.2% (compared with 27.2%) in the medium and heavy duty segment in the first six months of 2019. With 13,400 vehicles sold (up from 8,400), sales increased 59% in the first six months.

New features include a multimedia cockpit and more sophisticated safety systems.

The Brazilian Actros has a Euro V engine and transmission combination available only in that market. The components are optimised for consumption efficiency and robustness, as is the extremely stable yet lightweight, comfortable suspension developed in Brazil which is also easy to maintain and repair. The components are therefore well tailored to local requirements.

The new Actros consumes up to 12% less fuel compared with its Brazilian predecessor. The new driver’s cab also contributes to these savings: its aerodynamics were optimised, by amongst other things, new wind deflectors used in combination with local semitrailers.

In its dimensions, the cab with its low entry and a comfortable width of 2.5 metres fulfils drivers’ demands.

Industry 4.0: Daimler Trucks is revolutionising truck production in Brazil

A few months ago, The Sao Bernardo do Campo truck started up a completely new, modern Industry 4.0 assembly line for truck cabs and connected it with other manufacturing segments, including logistics, bodyshell and paint shop: a special smartphone app gives staff and management access to all relevant data whenever they need it.

This includes information on the approximately 60 driverless transport systems and the electronic screwdrivers which operate with pre-programmed torque settings. The data is connected via big data intelligence – smart processing of large quantities of data – in a cloud, ensuring quicker response times from employees in the production area. In this way, product quality can be monitored even more effectively and errors prevented or discovered well in advance.

Along the assembly line, solutions such as augmented reality and exoskeletons (external skeletons providing a supporting structure for production staff) are used in order to create a more ergonomic, intelligent and safe working environment. Using comparative data from the sales department also helps to regulate the production mix more efficiently and flexibly.

Mercedes-Benz do Brasil intends to roll out Industry 4.0 successively to all processes in the production lines for major assemblies (engines, transmissions and axles) and to the production of bus chassis in Sao Bernardo do Campo.