London grabs safety lead with Mercedes-Benz Econic
By Ian Vallely04 February 2016
The City of London Corporation in the UK has underlined its commitment to improving safety for cyclists and pedestrians in the famous Square Mile, by acquiring a purpose-designed truck from Mercedes-Benz.
The 8 x 4 Econic wears the colours of the authority’s Bow-based fleet contractor J B Riney, which was the first operator to place an order for the new tipper-grab. It was supplied by Dealer S & B Commercials.
The Econic cab has a deep, panoramic windscreen and a fully-glazed kerbside door. This, coupled with a much lower seating position compared to a conventional construction truck, improves visibility. It allows the driver to better see, and even make direct eye contact with those on bicycles and motorbikes, or on foot, at potentially hazardous junctions. Safety is further enhanced by a full complement of cameras, the manufacturer said.
An Econic 3235 ENA model, the truck has a single front steer axle, a double-drive bogie and a rear-steer axle. This configuration gives it a tight turning circle, and makes it more manoeuvrable than a standard 32-tonne construction eight-wheeler M-B said.
The Econic is powered by a 7.7 litre six-cylinder engine which produces 260 kiloWatts (354 horsepower) and drives through a six-speed Allison automatic gearbox. It is fitted with a Charlton steel tipping body and Palfinger Epsilon M135L radio remote-controlled articulating loader crane with clamshell bucket.