At the beginning of June the very first Arocs built to customer specifications were collected at the end of the assembly line by Dr Wolfgang Bernhard, Board of Management member of Daimler AG responsible for Daimler Trucks and Daimler Buses, marking the start of series production in Wörth.
Immediately afterwards the Arocs with the serial numbers 2 to 4 were brought from the assembly line to a bodybuilder to be prepared there for their punishing work. With the delivery of the vehicles to the demolition firm Bernd Grabowski Abbruchgesellschaft mbH & Co. KG, the two Arocs 2645 6×4 hook-lift roll-off tippers and an Arocs Grounder 3345 6×4 S tractor unit took up service on 27 July. The three new vehicles have been brought in to replace vehicles from the tried and tested Actros family at Grabowski.
And for Grabowski, vehicle technology must be future-proof. With an eye not least of all to the Euro VI emission control technology which Mercedes-Benz fits as standard in the new Arocs construction vehicle family, company owners Bernd and Dirk Grabowski had postponed the routine replacement of the three proven Actros for three months.
“We ordered immediately after the official order release, which made us the first customers in Germany”, says Bernd Grabowski, the senior partner in the family-owned enterprise. The Grabowskis set great store by always working with vehicles and machinery featuring the latest technology. “It’s more economical in the end. This is why we always replace our trucks with new vehicles after three years.”
The three fledgling Arocs drivers Lothar Dobberstein, Willy Gretzinger and Frank Langbehn say they have very quickly accustomed themselves to the new specialists for construction work from Mercedes-Benz. With the compact cab – the three Grabowski Arocs are equipped with the 2.3-metre version of the long StreamSpace cab – the men first had to realign themselves “to the centre of the roadway, but this gives you important centimetres on narrow roads and when manoeuvring on cramped construction sites”, all three say.
The fully automated Mercedes PowerShift 3 transmission fitted as standard on all Arocs models – here featuring the optional power mode – clearly facilitates the work of the demolition and container truck drivers. “After work you really have to get used to the ‘old-fashioned’ manual gearshift of your private car again”, says Willy Gretzinger. That they still must familiarise themselves with some fine details like the crawl function of the PowerShift box is a matter of honour for the three professional drivers.
The vehicles themselves definitely represent the robust side of the Arocs model family. Especially the Arocs Grounder 3345 6×4 S tractor unit. Built for a technically permissible gross vehicle weight of 33 tonnes, the tall truck hauls a Langdorf rear-end tipper as part of Grabowski’s everyday demolition work.
Before or after demolition work, Arocs driver Frank Langbehn makes a switch, hitching the tractor with its doubly secured special heavy-duty coupling under a low loader. The tractor/semitrailer rig then can be used for a 56-tonne gross combination weight and so can haul heavy equipment units back and forth from their places of use.
Especially on trips on which the trucks operate at full capacity, Frank Langbehn and his colleagues observed after just a few weeks of use: “The new ones pull better – and still consume less fuel.” None of the three would specify an exact number of litres: “we’ll wait and see what happens in the first three months.”
But after only a few weeks the new Arocs drivers from Grabowski’s demolition team are sure that the consumption advantage promised by Mercedes-Benz for the BlueTec 6 engines – minus five percent for the diesel – could be right.
Source: Daimler AG