Bell B45E Articulated Dump TruckArticulated Dump Truck specialist, Bell Equipment, will showcase their newest model in the company’s E-series Large Truck range, the B45E, at Bauma 2016.  This builds on their successful world preview of the prototype B50E truck at Intermat 2015.

The global market is creating increased demand for 45-ton trucks, and the B45E with its rated payload of 41 000kg, bin volume of 25m³ and a powerful new engine, has the potential to become the most popular model in the range due to its overall value proposition to customers.

The E-series Large Truck program was in development for 3.5 years and is planned for worldwide release in late 2016. The range is powered by the new Mercedes Benz HDEP engine platform and optimized for off-highway use by MTU. Like their smaller truck counterparts these E-series trucks are also all fitted with Allison transmissions.

“While new for us, the HDEP engine platform has been in production with Mercedes Benz for seven years” said Tristan du Pisanie, Bell Equipment’s Product Marketing Manager. “It’s an engine that Mercedes Benz is very familiar with, and we are confident that our customers will appreciate the advances in terms of fuel economy and power density over our D-series machines.”

Comparing D-series vs E-series ADTs

When comparing the large truck E-series to the outgoing D-series, all models have a useful increase in power with the new engine platform. The larger models also have the Allison 4700 transmission, which provides 7 gear ratios, to provide for better grade ability with reduced fuel consumption. Payloads have also increased.

All of the models, up to and including the B45E, are within 3 500mm width, which is a key number for European transport legislation. Because the B45D was a wider truck, it required a special transport permit in many European countries.

The D-series has proven itself as the industry benchmark. It delivers the lowest cost per ton of dirt hauled, and improving on this was a key requirement of the E-series Large Truck program. During comparative testing between the B40E and the B40D Bell found that when taking into account all of the variables, the B40E delivers a 6% to 7% lower cost per ton than the B40D. Similar improvements will be seen across the entire range, and this will directly impact Bell customers’ profitability and ability to tender more competitively.

ADT Transmission Built for Optimum Performance

“The move to a 7-speed Allison transmission across the range, with the exception of the B35E, effectively delivers better performance due to the smaller steps between gear ratios, and this keeps the engine at optimum revs more consistently,” said du Pisanie.

To accommodate the larger 7-speed transmission, Bell removed the automatic retarder on the transmission and opted to incorporate this important feature into the wet brake system.

“The retardation is still operated automatically and the new position of the retardation will not adversely impact on brake life,” Du Pisanie explained. “This is because extensive testing has shown that at the low pressures generated in the brakes during retardation, there is always oil between the wet brake plates, resulting in no touching and wear.”

Engines across the E-series Large Truck range incorporate a Jacobs engine brake ® that’s activated by an additional lobe on the camshaft.  When the operator’s foot is off the accelerator, the brake is automatically engaged.

“The retardation power of the Jacobs engine brake ® is higher than the engine braking produced by the outgoing V6 and V8 engines on the D-series trucks,” said du Pisanie.  “The benefit is that a lot less retardation outside of the engine is required.”

Durable Axles

B45E ADT from Bell Equipment

Traditionally in the Bell D-series range of ADTs, the brake system and gears shared common oil in the axle.  Du Pisanie explained that this required a specialized oil because it’s difficult to get a compromise between the oil needed for brakes and gears.

“In some of our remote markets this oil was difficult to source,” he said. “With the E-series Large Trucks, our engineers opted to use two separate commonly available and optimized oils for either brakes or gears in the axle. Not only have we been able to select the best suited oil in each instance but we have also introduced dedicated cooling, for the brake oil, across the range to improve system durability in heavy duty applications.”

Cab Design for Maximum Operator Comfort

According to du Pisanie, positive feedback from customers about operation and ergonomics led Bell to make use of the E-series Small Truck cab for the Large Truck range.  The electronic bonnet opening was added to the Large Truck cab as an additional, convenient feature.

The operator’s experience has been a key focus area of the E-series truck program.  The goal was to simplify the interface and improve ergonomics by taking into consideration the lifestyles of today’s younger generation of operators.

“Smartphone technology is growing in popularity and we also wanted to build the familiarity of what happens in your car into what happens in our E-series trucks,” said du Pisanie. “Therefore the E-series cab has a full color screen and an automotive mouse interface to control the sealed display unit.”

The Bell ADT is the first to offer this technology, as well as the standard reversing camera can integrated into the color screen display.

“Coinciding with our E-series Large Truck program, we have even further improved the response speed of the color monitors in the cab,” said du Pisanie. “This not only affects the new Large Trucks but can also be achieved by a software update on all existing E-series machines.”

To improve ride comfort and reduce whole body vibration, Bell opted for an Isringhausen seat that has its own suspension and dampening system.  The seat also has a three point safety harness which can be configured, as an additional safety feature, so the truck’s engine will only start once the seat harness is fastened. A heating option is also fitted for colder climates.

Unparalleled visibility comes from the full glass door, maximized window apertures and ideal operator position. Safety blind spots are significantly reduced, particularly in the area commonly used for cabin access.

“The Bell operator cabin has traditionally been one of the features most often praised by operators, and the E upgrade makes the operator experience even better,” said du Pisanie.

“Overall we are confident that we have looked critically at what needed to be included in the upgrade,” he said.  “We focused only on delivering real value added improvements, in terms of reduced cost per ton and safety, without compromising the platform that has served us so well for the last 15 years. We look forward to taking users through our trucks with the traditional Bell hospitality at Bauma 2016,” he said.

To see the new B45E large truck, visit Bell Equipment at Bauma 2016 at Hall B5, stands 118-208.