Stress relief with new Mercedes-Benz Actros trucks 28 March 2012

Truck driving is a less stressful job than it used to be, according to a study by Mercedes-Benz.

As part of its Actros development programme, Mercedes-Benz analysed data from drivers on three different trucks.

The new and outgoing models were compared, and a 1965 vintage LP 1620 drawbar was thrown in too.

Wiring up test drivers to measure physical stress with an ECG to monitor heart rate, and an EEG to pick up brain activity, they sent four drivers away for a week into Spain's Sierra Nevada.

A 466km daily route showed there to be smaller than expected variations in physical stress, with a 1.4% drop between the current Actros and the new model, and the old LP 1620 being just 10% more stressful to drive.

On the other hand, cognitive stress, as measured by the EEG, told a different tale. Against the current Actros, the LP 1620 added a whopping 140% to the drivers' cognitive workload, with the new Actros dropping cognitive stress levels by 25%.

Development engineers cite improved automated gearboxes and better ride and handling as most influential.

Ian Norwell

Related Companies
Mercedes-Benz UK Ltd

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