Bendix unveils Wingman Advanced; adds trailer remote diagnostic unit

LOUISVILLE, KY. On the first day of the Mid-America Trucking Show here, Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems made a number of announcements, including the introduction of a new product and the latest improvement to its popular Wingman system

LOUISVILLE, KY. On the first day of the Mid-America Trucking Show here, Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems made a number of announcements, including the introduction of a new product and the latest improvement to its popular Wingman system.

Bendix unveiled the latest adaptation of its Wingman collision mitigation system. The Wingman Advanced combines adaptive cruise control with braking and collision mitigation technologies and builds upon the company’s full-stability control technology, the Bendix ESP, to provide drivers assistance in preventing collisions, rollovers, and loss-of-control situations.

“Bendix Wingman Advanced represents another step forward in commercial vehicle safety,” said Fred Andersky, Bendix director of marketing-controls. “Bendix continues to build on its commitment to deliver cost-effective, active safety solutions that can positively impact ROI for fleets. Utilizing Bendix Wingman Advanced may help fleets and their drivers in the new CSA-driven environment to maintain a strong safety performance and better scores, which, in turn, may help drive revenue, lower costs, and increase profitability.”

The Wingman Advanced uses a radar sensor mounted to the front of the vehicle and delivers both warnings to drivers and active interventions when needed to mitigate rear-end collisions or, at least, help reduce their severity.

Both J.B. Hunt and LTL carrier Saia have chosen to implement the Wingman Advanced system.

The system also provides following distance and stationary object alerts whether or not cruise control is engaged. When drivers utilize the adaptive cruise control with braking feature, the system will also actively intervene to help them maintain a safe following distance by reducing the throttle; engaging the engine retarder; or, if necessary, applying the foundation brakes.

The collision mitigation feature intervenes to prevent rear-end collisions by first alerting the driver, and then, if no action is taken, applying the brakes to decelerate the vehicle. About two-thirds of the available braking power of the vehicle can be delivered through collision mitigation compared to about one-third through adaptive cruise control with braking, Bendix said.

Wingman Advance also provides audible and visual warnings to the driver when the vehicle approaches a stationary metallic object such as a car. It makes the warnings up to 3 seconds before a potential collision, the company said.

“Fleets and their drivers tell us this alert is especially helpful,” Andersky said. “We’ve all heard about situations involving trucks and stalled vehicles on the road and the resulting consequences. Stationary object alerts may give the driver a head’s up, enabling him or her to slow, change lanes, steer to avoid – or at least lessen the severity of – a potential collision.”

Bendix Wingman Advanced can deliver useful data that can be used to help improve driver performance by targeting specific driver needs for training. Data reported from the system includes following distance histograms, alerts provided, stability events, and other useful information, and is available through Bendix ACom diagnostic software (version 6.3 or higher). It is available free of charge and can be downloaded from www.bendix.com.

Bendix also introduced a new diagnostic unit. The Trailer Remote Diagnostic Unit (TRDU) allows users to diagnose trailer antilock braking system (ABS) problems before they lead to downtime. Designed to work on most trailer ABS systems, including those from Bendix, Wabco and Haldex, the TRDU identifies the exact component in need of repair.

“The Bendix TRDU has always been a helpful diagnostic tool that allowed technicians to quickly diagnose Bendix trailer ABS problems,” said Andersky. “By expanding the Bendix TRDU to non-Bendix trailer ABS systems, we’re helping increase technician efficiency and on-the-job ease. And we’re helping fleets and owner-operators keep trailers on the road delivering revenue.”

The device is just 1.5 in. in diameter and less than 2 in. tall. It plugs into a trailer’s seven-pin connector using an adapter. Its intuitive nature quickly displays which ABS component, such as wheel speed sensor or modulator, is experiencing problems and its location with a colored LED light.

The device is portable, allowing it to be used in the field or in the shop.

Bendix also announced it is cutting the price on its SmarTire Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) 13% beginning May 1. The product is available through Bendix OES and independent aftermarket networks.

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