February 4 - Mercedes-Benz has unveiled its new SLT heavy haulage vehicle, designed for a gross truck and trailer weight of 250 tonnes.

Heavy hauliers can now order special SLT versions of the Actros and Arocs trucks, which are fitted with the Mercedes-Benz OM 473 six-cylinder in-line engine providing 460 kW of output.

The Actros SLT has air suspension and is available with a GigaSpace or BigSpace cab, while the Arocs SLT has steel suspension and is available with a BigSpace or StreamSpace cab.

The combination of the OM 473 engine and the second-generation turbo retarder clutch results in spontaneous and dynamic starting, and fast response to movements of the accelerator pedal, even when high gross truck and trailer weights are involved.

While the main sales focus of the heavy haulage vehicle is in Europe, Mercedes-Benz also plans for the truck to be used overseas, in places such as South America and Africa.

The SLT range was developed by Custom Tailored Trucks (CTT) at the Molsheim plant in France, in close collaboration with the central trucks development team in Stuttgart.

Heavy duty transport companies in Germany and Switzerland have already subjected the new vehicle to intensive trials on 12 drives, which included hauling a 220-tonne locomotive on a low loader trailer from Munich to Mannheim.