Mack trucksis once again building medium-duty trucks in the United States.
The company’s all-new Mack MD Series of medium-duty trucks was unveiled January 30 during a press event at the new Roanoke Valley Operations plant where the trucks will be manufactured. Serial production of the Mack MD Series will begin in July 2020.
Mack also announced a $13 million investment to establish its Roanoke Valley Operations (RVO), a new manufacturing facility in the Roanoke Valley of Virginia that will be dedicated to production of the Mack MD Series. The project will result in the creation of 250 new jobs.
The investment funds are being used for equipment, tooling, and building enhancements in the 280,000-sq-ft facility where assembly of Mack medium-duty vehicles will take place.
During the launch festivities, Martin Weissburg, Mack Trucks president, said: “Mack Trucks is very proud to make this investment and to now offer a full lineup of Class 6 to Class 8 commercial vehicles, serving virtually every segment of the market. With this investment, Mack is well-positioned for future success, and we’re taking orders for the new truck beginning today.”
Virginia Gov Ralph Northam announced the $13 million investment during the event at RVO, which included state and local government officials. Gov Northam approved a $700,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund for the project.
The two medium-duty products include the MD6, a Class 6 model with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 25,995 pounds and the MD7, a Class 7 model that has a GVWR of 33,000 pounds. Both models are exempt from the 12% Federal Excise Tax (FET).
The new products will meet the needs of vocational applications, including tank truck, refrigerated/dry van, stake/flatbed, and dump truck. The MD6 model does not require a commercial driver’s license (CDL) to operate for non-hazardous payloads.
“We are already providing our customers a full product lineup of Class 8 vehicles, which includes straight trucks and cabover platforms,” said Jonathan Randall, Mack Trucks senior vice-president of North American sales and marketing. The Mack MD Series gives us additional solutions for our customers. Now that we have a full lineup of Class 6 to Class 8 vehicles, customers desiring Mack’s distinctive durability and reliability now have an option for lighter GVWR configurations. We want to be a single-source solution for all of our customers, and we anticipate a good market response.”
Randall adds that Mack isn’t new to the medium-duty truck market. In fact, the company has a rich history in medium-duty trucks. Mack Trucks offered medium-duty products until 2002. “Customers and dealers have been asking for a medium-duty product for awhile, and we decided the time was right.”
The Mack MD Series is an all-new model range built specifically for medium-duty applications. The MD Series is offered with a Cummins B6.7 engine rated at 200 to 300 horsepower and 560 to 660 lb-ft torque. The trucks come standard with the Allison 2500HS, and the 2500RDS for PTO is optional. A spring suspension is standard, and the Mack Maxlite air suspension is optional.
The truck is built on a solid foundation with 7mm thick frame rails for the MD6 and 8mm thickness for the MD7. The steel frame rails are rated at 120,000 psi.
Available in 4x2 configurations, the MD6 and MD7 models feature a sharp wheel cut for enhanced maneuverability for tough urban settings. The MD Series cab design features a short bumper-to-back-of-cab (BBC) measurement of 103 inches, an industry best. The cab comes standard with an air suspension and rear window.
Mack matched the bold look and styling of the Mack Anthem, Mack’s highway model, as a basis for the grille and hood design found on the MD Series. The cab features reduced step-up height, multiple grab handles for safety, and short hood for improved downward visibility.
In addition to eight wheelbase lengths, the MD Series supports a range of bodies in lengths from 10 to 26 feet. Standard wheels are 22.5 inches and 19.5-inch wheels are optional.
The Mack MD Series will be supported by Mack’s extensive dealer network. Support also comes through the Geotab Go Rugged solution that provides access to the Mack Uptime Center and Mack OneCall and ASIST.