Is the Paccar MX engine the Mercedes engine of the Peterbilt and Kenworth world?
Mercedes bragged about its engines great fuel economy, ease of maintenance, while still maintaining power to do the job. Paccar MX touts almost identical traits.
Now I have never personally drove the Paccar MX engine, however I have owned the Mercedes engine in 2 separate trucks, a Western Star and a Freightliner.
As far as the Mercedes engines go, the easiest word to sum them up is junk. These gutless wonders are lucky to pull their own weight up a hill much less the weight of a truck that is loaded with 40,000 lbs.
Granted they are light weight engines, and I will say I got average fuel mileage with it. But no different than I was getting with the Series 60 I had prior to it.
The Mercedes sat lower in the chassis and you could literally tear the engine down to the block in a 8 hours easy. So ease of maintenance was indeed a fact. Now the nice thing about that is for the mechanic, and you will get to visit him a lot once the engine gets a few hundred thousand on it. Once my engine warranty expired I started blowing head gaskets on a regular basis. Nice thing they are separate heads for each cylinder.
As far as power, let me see, how to compare. With my CAT and a 79000+ gross weight I can climb the hills in the flint hills of KS across I-70 at 50+ mph. Now bear in mind I usually set my cruise at 63-65.
In the Mercedes running about the same cruise speed I generally had to drop 2 gears and climb those hills at an average speed of 40 mph. and couple of them even a little slower, with the same weight.
Okay, okay granted kitty don’t get 6.5 mpg average like pukey did, but I needed longer to make the run. Now in Kitty’s defense, she is only averaging .2 mpg less; small trade for the performance difference. And I am pretty sure if I put a wing on top I can make that up.
Now as I stated I have not driven the new Paccar MX engine. HOWEVER!!! I have talked to a few guys that are running these newly touted angels of the Class 8 market. Now keep in mind that one mechanic I chatted with in regards to these engines stated they are equivalent of a C13 CAT.
These wonders are supposedly rated at 380 to 485 HP and up to 1750 torque; which is about the same torque as the older “E” class CATS had. They claim meeting all 2010 emission standards while having power and economy.
Now again as I have stated I have not driven one personally, so I cannot honestly attest to the accuracy of this information, however I would like to get my hands on one to make a battery run with it and see what it does with the weight.
From what I have been told by others driving this engine, one guy had a 2011 389 Peterbilt, another had a 2011 386, and I believe the last guy I talked to had a 389 as well but it didn’t look as long so perhaps it was a 388.
However all had the Paccar engine, all were at the shop for the same reason, Emission system problems.
I’m not sure the transmission setup in all the trucks just the first guy’s 389 had a 13 in it.
According to what all of them stated the Paccar engine is another gutless wonder. They claim going across 70 in KS and MO that it was nothing uncommon to drop 4 gears with 35,000 in the back. Now based on my calculations that equates to about 71,000 gross weight. Okay, so 8,500 lbs less and they are climbing the hills at 40 mph? What is wrong with that picture? Sounds like Paccar put a Mercedes engine in the trucks.
In addition they claim an average fuel economy of about 4.7 mpg, not just 1 but all 3 of them. At least the Mercedes got some fuel mileage with no balls.
Again I state I haven’t driven one of these engines and I tend to be very frugal as far as fuel goes, so perhaps the touted economy is achievable, and these guys are just running as fast as they can legally go. Idling a lot and drag racing from stop lights, I can’t say.
I have found very few people who actually drive as I do, and it takes a lot of discipline to do so. I know it took me forever to teach myself to be light on the peddle, and it’s not a easy task with today’s traffic. But it pays in the end.
So anyone else have the Paccar MX engine? Is it really as bad as these guys make it out to be?