A Chance Encounter
Clive Wrathall, who has worked for Crittall Windows for the last 19 years and drives the new Actros, explained the decision to switch from their long-term vehicle supplier was purely by chance.
Crittall use their trucks to distribute the windows, doors and screens they produce throughout the UK and has roots dating back nearly 200 years. When it was time for a new addition to their fleet, Clive was asked to gather comparative quotes against their current vehicle manufacturer. In what some may call a turn of fate, his search landed him in the company of Orwell Truck & Van Truck Sales Executive Ben Sheldrake discussing the new Actros and its seven core innovations.
Clive says; “Ben spent two to three hours explaining the benefits of the new Actros to me and it enlightened me to the fact that there was a whole new era of trucks out there.”
Clive took an older generation Actros demonstrator vehicle to trial for three days, driving the tractor unit to Scotland for a delivery during which he said he became “sold on the fact Mercedes-Benz Trucks were the way to go;”
“When I last drove a Mercedes-Benz Truck over 25 years ago they didn’t perform as well as other manufacturers. I was really impressed with the Actros and most of all its performance.”
After Clive’s experience with the Actros demonstrator, Ben returned to Crittall Windows head office in Witham (one of three sites) to spec the new truck alongside Clive.
An impressive Spec
The result was an Actros 2545LS with a BigSpace cab fitted with the latest innovations by Mercedes-Benz.These include the world’s very first MirrorCam, which replaces conventional mirrors with cameras, the latest version of safety technology Active Brake Assist – a system which automatically applies partial to full braking where necessary upon detection of objects and now even pedestrians In front of the cab – and the fuel saving, newly enhanced, Predictive Powertrain Control.The Truck certainly looks the part too, with its trademark Crittall logo and brand name strikingly liveried onto full factory metallic paint, topped off with an illuminated three pointed star on the grille.
Whilst Clive was eager to get behind the wheel of the new generation Actros, he was initially apprehensive about MirrorCam technology, an innovation many drivers have struggled to comprehend before experiencing it themselves first hand.
MirrorCam Trumps All
Ben delivered the truck alongside our Handover Specialist Rob Billman, who has helped many customers adjust to the new technology in the new Actros, particularly MirrorCam.
“I took the truck out for its first drive with Rob so he could guide me through how everything works,” says Clive, “and I was in the truck less than five minutes before my doubts about MirrorCam had completely disappeared.
“You can jack-knife the trailer as far left or right as you possibly can and you would never lose sight of the rear end of the trailer. The vision in the rain is second to none compared to regular mirrors as they don’t steam up or get completely covered in rain and spray hampering your vision. When driving at night or when it’s dark there isn’t any glare from other traffic, and you don’t get dazzled by the sun during sunrise.”
Clive expressed his favourability of MirrorCam with joy, and he even enjoys praising the technology to other drivers who are skeptical when the truck receives attention at truck stops and depots.