INDIANAPOLIS. Available since 2017, Mack Trucks' Over The Air updates program has been expanding and has now helped customers save hundreds of days their trucks would have otherwise had to spend in the shop. The program is growing, and the OEM is offering a new Parameter Plus package that allows customers to perform up to 50 updates that can fine-tune and adjust engine and vehicle performance, speed limits and more.
Mack announced Parameter Plus at Work Truck Show 2019, and it's available for order now. Customers can make up to 50 parameter updates per 12-month period on all model year 2018 and newer Mack vehicles equipped with Mack GuardDog Connect. Parameter Plus can also be added to older models with Mack EPA 2017 engines.
"Since 2017, we've had nearly 350 customers sign up for Mack Over The Air," said Tim Wrinkle, construction products manager for Mack Trucks. "That's more than 6,200 vehicles, and they have performed more than 2,100 updates.
"On average, it takes about 22 minutes for one of these updates to take place, and this has saved more than 1,900 days of downtime for these customers," he added. "You can imagine that impact."
Over The Air updates for Mack trucks can help fleets and trucking companies adjust these vehicles even for a specific load or run. "A customer might just want to change a parameter such as road speed [limit] or idle time, and they can initiate the change," Wrinkle said.
He shared how one fleet, Waste Connections, has completed hundreds of updates via Mack Over The Air. Waste Connections is a solid waste hauler serving more than 6 million customers in 41 states in the U.S. and six provinces in Canada. Nearly half of the company's 13,000 trucks are Mack models.
Waste Connections' Gregory Thibodeaux, vice president of maintenance and fleet management, called Mack's OTA program "absolutely critical to our business." He shared from the company's experiences, noting that before using the program, "we'd go to a dealer, get into a queue and it might take three days — even if it's just a 20-minute programming. Now, it can be [done] while we're at lunch or at the shop. The driver is not impacted, which is critical to us."
Mack Over The Air delivers software and parameter updates to a customer's truck through Mack GuardDog Connect, Mack's integrated telematics solution. The updates are scheduled for when it works best for the customer, so trucks don't have to be taken out of service.
"As long as the key is in the ignition and the truck is parked, the remote update can be delivered," noted said David Pardue, vice president of connected vehicle and contract services for Mack Trucks.
Mack Over The Air is part of Mack's suite of offerings under Mack Connect, which integrates intelligent software, predictive analytics and driver assist technologies.