Class 8 Low Cab Forward Vehicle Excels in Concrete Pumping, Concrete and Aggregate Conveyor Applications
Sterling Truck Corporation has introduced the Condor Class 8 low cab forward vehicle to the construction market. The 68-inch BBC vehicle will be available in 6 x 4 and 4 x 2 configurations and with a multitude of component and feature options. Sterling unveiled the truck to the construction industry at the 2001 World of Concrete Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.
According to John Merrifield, Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Sterling Truck Corporation, the low cab forward (LCF) configuration presents distinct advantages for concrete pumping applications and concrete and aggregate conveyors. Until now, however, these operators were forced to choose from older, outdated LCF trucks. The Sterling Condor is a completely new design that ushers in a new era of safety, ergonomics, maneuverability, durability, uptime and serviceability for Class 8 LCF operators.
Highlights of the Sterling Condor include:
Superb visibility -- Through a vast, two-piece windshield and large side and rear windows, Condor provides a 238-degree field of vision. All together, the vehicle incorporates up to 43.6 square feet of glass (standard), giving the driver a panoramic-like view of the street and construction site. Optional window configurations are available which increase the viewing area to a 273-degree field of vision with 47.6 square feet of glass area.
Excellent ergonomics -- The vehicle features a low cab height for easy entry and egress from the cab. With a maximum 18-inch step-in height, two-step entry and oversized grab handles, the driver can move quickly and safely in and out of the cab.
Operator comfort -- A spacious interior provides copious leg, head and elbow room and accommodates drivers from the 5th to 95th percentile in body size. Seats have full travel fore and aft. The interior also offers generous storage space behind the seats, as well as clipboard-sized molded door pockets and a center well between the front seats. Condor is also distinguished by its flat floor. The steering column is mounted to the front bulkhead while the throttle, clutch and brake pedals are suspended, leaving a completely flat, obstruction-free floor with safer access to the pedals and plenty of foot room.
Unique instrument pod -- Located directly in front of the driver integral to the standard tilt/telescoping steering wheel, the pod has gauges for speed, engine RPM and engine oil pressure, and houses the turn signal, check engine light and high beam indicator. The pod also incorporates an information read-out that displays an hour meter, data bus diagnostics, a clock, two trip odometers and other data. Since the pod moves with the steering wheel, its gauges are always in view.
Third seat option -- Condor's unique third seat option places the third vehicle occupant behind the right side seat. This is superior to configurations which squeeze the two passengers side-by-side or force a second passenger to sit 'side-saddle' on top of the engine tunnel.
Superb maneuverability -- Since construction trucks often operate on construction sites crowded with vehicles, equipment, materials and other obstacles, maneuverability is critical. Condor offers up to a 45-degree wheel cut for an extremely tight turning radius.
Outstanding durability -- Condor's corrosion-resistant aluminum cab has been designed to exceed tough industry standards for strength and durability. The roof is designed to withstand point loads over 300 pounds. Henrob fasteners are used in the construction of the cab assembly to further enhance durability. Cab doors feature cast iron hinges with oil-impregnated bronze bushings with a 3/8" diameter stainless steel pin -- for better adjustability and long life.
Surface-mounted front clearance lamps and side-mounted auxiliary turn signals are protected from damage by their careful positioning, while exterior mirrors fold inward if struck. In addition, the vehicle design locates the front PTO hydraulic pump behind the front bumper location, protecting the pump from damage and eliminating the need for a front frame or bumper extension.
Standard TufTrac rear suspension system -- TufTrac is a rugged, six-rod vocational suspension for construction, refuse, concrete mixer, heavy-haul, mining and logging applications. A proprietary Freightliner LLC technology,
TufTrac offers extremely high axle articulation and uniform wheel loading, letting the truck maneuver over bumps, ridges and washboard roads without bottoming out the suspension or losing traction. It also provides protection for the rear brake chambers by relocating them to the forward side of the axle. TufTrac is maintenance-free, requiring neither lubrication nor adjustment.
Tough, core componentry -- Other Condor specifications include 12,000 - 20,000 front axles; 21,000 - 70,000-pound rear axles; engine ratings to 380 horsepower and featuring the Cat 3126, C-10 and C-12 and Cummins ISM, ISC and ISB; a wide selection of transmissions including Allison automatics; standard Meritor S-Cam brakes with Meritor air disc brakes as optional equipment; Hendrickson, Chalmers, Neway and Ridewell rear suspensions as well as Freightliner's proprietary AirLiner air suspension; front suspension capacities to 23,000 pounds; liftable pusher/tag axles; 1,116 sq. in. standard radiator (1,100 sq. in. with factory FEPTO configuration); and optional factory air conditioning with radiator-mounted condenser.
Uptime and Serviceability -- Condor is loaded with low- and no-maintenance systems to maximize productivity and uptime. When service is required, the vehicle offers easy access to components. Service points like engine oil fill and check, transmission fill and check, power steering reservoir and air cleaner are easily reachable just behind the cab. A quick release hatch on the grille allows access to the front hydraulic pump, steering gears and cab pivots. The cab itself tilts to a 42-degree angle -- this gives service technicians plenty of room to access the engine compartment without risking damage to air and electrical lines associated with excessive cab tilt.
Excellent platform for body installation -- With its integrated chassis design and clean frame rails and back of cab, Condor facilitates installation of any number of vehicle bodies. The electrical system and wiring harnesses are easily accessible and feature quick disconnects, while wiring raceways in the cab have removable panels that provide a protected pathway, yet are easy to remove for adding circuits.
"We believe the tough, efficient, technologically-advanced Condor will excel in construction-related applications and will deliver a multitude of benefits to its owner," Merrifield said.
Condor's versatility gives it many applications within and outside the construction industry, Merrifield added. Sterling first debuted the Condor to the refuse industry in May 2000. Other applications of the vehicle include public utility service, heavy towing, heating oil and bulk fuel delivery and tree spade applications.
Sterling will sell and service the Condor through the Sterling North American dealer network. The vehicle will be backed by Sterling's comprehensive commitment to customer support.
The new Condor joins a host of offerings from Sterling for the construction industry. Sterling also offers the tough and versatile vocationally-oriented L-Line Class 7 & 8 conventionals, as well as the Class 5-8 Acterra, which are used in a variety of construction applications.