MAN Truck & Bus
The 1970s were an eventful decade for MAN. Following its acquisition of Büssing, MAN entered the light truck business in cooperation with Saviem, a manufacturer of commercial vehicles based in France, and later with Volkswagen. It was a decision that was crowned by great success: The MAN 19.280 won the coveted prize – which at that time was not yet awarded by the international trade press but by European truck trade journals – for the first time in 1978. One reason for the award was that the 19.280 with its 280 horsepower could do anything that other more powerful trucks (e.g. with 320 horsepower) could do – and even managed to do it more economically thanks to its fuel-saving engine. The secret was its engine that turned over relatively slowly and that boasted high torque increases and a large overall gear ratio.
MAN was awarded the accolade for a second time for its 19.321 from the now legendary F8 cab series. This truck had been given a facelift in 1979 and featured new plastic-coated bumpers that came with two step recesses and larger headlights. Roof spoilers were also fitted to improve aerodynamics and reduce fuel consumption. The year also marked a significant farewell: Büssing’s engine was discontinued because it had become too loud for current noise regulations; it was replaced with a MAN engine fitted under the cab. This MAN D25 engine was available in a 280- or 320-horsepower six-cylinder in-line version with combined turbocharging and intercooling.
The MAN F90 long-haul truck was named International Truck of the Year in 1987. It was the model for the heavy truck series. It featured a new cab as the successor to the F9 cab. The MAN F90 was the company’s first to feature a completely tilting cab while the windscreen came with an inclination of 10° for improved aerodynamics. Plastic was also used for the wings, bumpers and front flap to save weight. The driver’s cab boasted a completely new design but retained the layout of the old series. The F90’s look still closely resembled that of its predecessor but its edges were rounded, its indicators were shifted down slightly into the bumper and the characteristic dots between the letters in the logo disappeared. All models in the MAN F90 range were fitted with the generation of engines that had been developed from the F8 series. The last digit in the type designations went up from ‘1’ to ‘2’. The F90’s most powerful engine increased its performance to 460 HP and later even to 500 HP. No other road truck in Europe put more power on the road.
No truck was able to convince the jury at the 1995 International Truck of the Year Award more than the MAN F2000. This was the range that followed the heavy F90 models in 1994. One striking feature that made the newcomers stand out: MAN was the first commercial vehicle manufacturer to put double headlamps using free-form technology under a single glass cover. The lamps delivered a luminous efficacy that was around 75% greater than that achieved with older versions. The front skirt and exhaust silencer were also revamped. But the tried-and-tested cab from the F90 had hardly been touched. The engines were available with 340, 400 or 460 horsepower and the type designation’s last digit now went up to ‘3’. The F2000 series sounded the death knell for the underfloor engines that had been used until its arrival. The heavy-duty series featured engines with electronic injection control as standard. That meant that the F2000 was already fulfilling the Euro 2 emissions requirements a full two years before they came into effect. The F2000 was available with four cab versions, including one with an innovative high roof.
Trucknology Generation Type A – or TGA for short – that was the product name that MAN used to launch a new type of heavy-duty truck in 2000 that was again honoured with the accolade in 2001. The TGA was launched with five versions of cab that ranged in size from M to XXL, all of which met high demands on comfort, ergonomics and aerodynamics. The TGA cab most of all, however, set standards with its combination of high-quality workplace and living space. The controls in the cockpit were functionally positioned and placed within intuitive reach for the driver, the intelligent stowage and storage concept in conjunction with the powerful air-conditioning system delivered optimum comfort for the occupants – ergonomically well thought-out and practical. The MAN TGA naturally also featured a pull-out cool box and comfort loungers as well as such telecommunications and entertainment facilities as a radio, television, video and CD player along with telephone, radio or fax, right up to the option for connecting a coffee machine or microwave. The TGA was also associated with the series production of safety and assistance systems, such as LGS, ESP and ACC, as well as telematics services for fleet control.
MAN led the field to victory again five years later with its new model in the weight class ranging between 7.5 and 12 tonnes: the TGL, which was launched in spring 2005. TGL stands for Trucknology Generation Light. The appearance for this series of light MAN vehicles, which gradually replaced the L2000, was adapted to the Trucknology Generation. The TGL models featured improved aerodynamics and elegant looks while the interior offered drivers high-quality seats and enhanced ergonomics. The vehicles were powered by new and more powerful engines that utilised exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and the more environmentally friendly common-rail injection.
MAN hit the bull’s-eye in the jury’s heart with the TGX and TGS, successors to the TGA, which were consequently also named International Truck of the Year 2008. The jury was impressed by, among other things, the modernised driver’s cab in which the workplace was designed for ergonomics, comfort and functionality as well as the aerodynamics that had been optimised for new series and that significantly reduced fuel consumption and noise levels inside. The D20 and D26 engines also featured common-rail direct injection and, thanks to an AdBlue emission control system, complied with the Euro-5 emission standard – one year before it became mandatory in 2009. Individual models in the new series also weighed up to 120 kilograms less, which further reduced diesel consumption. The headlamps were equipped with long-life bulbs and the parking lights, for example, with LEDs.