Steve Ginter, Mack Trucks’ vocational product manager, said the biggest changes incorporated in the new TerraPro Series chassis from earlier models are largely hidden from view but make a world of difference to refuse fleets over the life of the vehicle.

“The TerraPro is an evolution of the LE and MR designs,” told FleetOwner at Waste Expo this week in Atlanta. “We took everything we learned with our MR and LE models to design the TerraPro from inside out so customers would get the most versatile and comfortable trucks for refuse operators.”

The biggest difference is in electronics. The TerraPro Series– comprised of the TerraPro Low Entry and the TerraPro Cabover models– is now equipped with the fourth generation of Mack’s Vehicle Management and Control System (V-MAC IV). Control Link and back-of-cab Body Link II electrical interface systems provide quick-connections to create a far simpler “plug and play” environment for faster and easier body installation.

“All a fleet needs to do is disconnect the body-chassis wiring bundle located behind the driver’s seat to quickly figure out if a diagnostic fault is occurring in the truck itself or the body – that really cuts down on maintenance diagnostic time,” said Ginter. “We also relocated the main wiring harnesses up into the dash to isolate them better from the hash work environments waste trucks are subjected to, while making it easier for maintenance technicians to access them.”

Ginter said driver comfort played a big role in the TerraPro design, to help lessen the tough conditions drivers must deal with in daily trash operations.

The TerraPro Low Entry model, for example, offers a low-to-the-ground cab height (17 inches) for easy one-step entry and exit for curbside pickup operations, with larger door openings for easy entry and egress. The Mack Work Brake System on the vehicle allows for simultaneous brake release and transmission engagement, saving time for drivers in high-cycle operations while reducing wear and tear on brake components.

Ginter noted that TerraPro models with engines under 405 horsepower do not need auxiliary cooling systems to handle the higher heat loads generated by EPA ’07 engine technology. “That simplifies things tremendously for refuse operators from a maintenance perspective,” he stressed.

To comment on this article, write to Sean Kilcarr at skilcarr@fleetowner.com.