Tipper show for RoadStars
Exclusive driving experience
Cool event exclusively for RoadStars with a blue steering wheel: An international group of drivers tests the latest construction lorries under tough conditions.
Otto doesn't hesitate for long. The driver from Bischofshofen in Austria has taken on a heavyweight straight off; an Arocs 4151 AK 8×8 – i.e. with all-wheel drive! From the co-driver's seat, driving instructor Loris Eck informs him that the turbo retarder clutch is now activated. The green symbol is illuminated in the display. With his right foot, Otto presses the accelerator pedal down a little more. He holds the steering wheel tight in both hands. The incline starts; Otto is pressed into his seat. He grins, enjoying the moment. Just don't accelerate too much now so that the wheels don't spin! A short time later, the tipper has conquered the highest peak in the gravel quarry. Otto is thrilled: "That was unbelievable. You need a very sensitive accelerator foot for the turbo retarder clutch but then it's as if it drives itself. The system is wear-free. I do everything with the accelerator pedal. Phenomenal."
The latest tipper technology on the most challenging terrain.
Drivers from Denmark, Great Britain, Germany, Romania, Austria, Czech Republic, Belgium and the Netherlands have come to Wörth to experience the very latest tipper technology under tough conditions: Powerful lorries on inclines that demand everything of them and slippery surfaces to top it off. As community members with a blue steering wheel, the drivers used the chance in advance to apply for the event on RoadStars.
"You need a very sensitive accelerator foot for the turbo retarder clutch but then it's as if it drives itself. The system is wear-free. I do everything with the accelerator pedal. Phenomenal."
– Otto, driver
Lorries at boundaries.
At the gravel quarry, RoadStars has served up the best that Mercedes-Benz Trucks currently has to offer for the off-road sector. Ten lorries – from the Atego 1530 two-way tipper to the Arocs 4151 AK – are available to the participants.
RoadStars compare experiences.
On his way to his next drive, Marc from Sunderland, England compares notes on the Arocs with David: technical discussions among real RoadStars! For David, who exclusively drives on surfaced roads in his home country of Belgium, this activity in the gravel quarry is a welcome change. He was also drawn by the Unimogs in which the participants drive their laps on a spectacular course. However, as a co-driver: this track is not suitable for drivers who are just getting to know the Unimog. "The vehicles here are truly at their boundaries", says Karl-Josef Leib from the Mercedes-Benz team. He indicates an all-terrain Unimog which is currently conquering an 80 percent incline on cobblestones. "If the tyres lose contact at all, it's too late, there's no chance of continuing." Marc quickly takes a photo of a vehicle that is mastering the 1.20-metre-deep water ditch, pushing an impressive bow wave. Then it's time to continue over to the tipper course.
"The vehicles here are truly at their boundaries."
– Karl-Josef Leib, Mercedes-Benz team
Siegfried climbs out of an Arocs 1851 tractor unit. "You really have to pay a lot of attention here on this course, but then that's also the case under tough conditions." Siegfried, who usually works in construction-site haulage in the foothills of the Alps, knows his stuff. He has just tested the Hydraulic Auxiliary Drive in the 1851 and talked shop with driving instructor Uwe Ackermann.
Sascha from Mecklenburg-Vorpommern is beaming from ear to ear after driving the Arocs 3345 6×6: "It is the most amazing feeling when you feel the power and the traction while driving."
The day before, the tipper show participants visited the Mercedes-Benz Wörth plant, where they experienced the production of Actros, Arocs and co close up. Jean-François, who has travelled to the event from Belgium: "The factory is so impressive! Especially as every lorry is really a unique specimen."
Great conversations and a relaxed end to the day.
After the activity on the off-road course, it's time to go back to the bus. The drivers are meeting up in the brewery again this evening: cold drinks, delicious food and animated conversations between RoadStars from all over Europe. Sascha: "At service stations in the evenings I often don't feel like socialising. Today, however, it is just right and I'm sure we'll see each other again. It's a small world after all." Especially for RoadStars!
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Photos and video: Alex Kraus
Editing: Alexander Tempel