GOT YOUR BACK! – 2019 OEM TELEMATICS GUIDE, Part 2


FROM THE PAST issue’s look at OEM telematics systems used in this region, following the two Swedes we now check out the two Germans: Mercedes-Benz and MAN.

GOT YOUR BACK! – 2019 OEM TELEMATICS GUIDE, Part 2
Both German commercial vehicle powerhouses Mercedes-Benz and MAN also have popular telematics systems and strategies used in the Australian bus and coach market.

According to the company, Mercedes-Benz Buses offers a smart telematics system for its Australian bus and coach customers.

The premium fleet management tool features an Australian-developed software suite and makes it much easier for businesses to operate and monitor their fleets.

The system is widely used among Mercedes-Benz truck customers in Australia. In addition to the desktop portal with full functionality, Mercedes-Benz Telematics also includes innovative apps for both the fleet operator and driver that increase convenience and visibility, it states.

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The telematics app allows the fleet operator to view a large amount of real-time and historical data on each vehicle, including vehicle location, driving behaviour, alerts - such as over-speeding, sudden braking instances, collisions and geo-fence breaches - along with other features.

The driver’s app includes driver ID functionality and access to their own driving data.

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ENHANCED GSM COVERAGE

The system features on-board memory with up to three months of data when not in GSM coverage. It uses Telstra 3G network for enhanced GSM coverage and features a secure encrypted cloud portal. A large amount of data can be exported to the fleet operator in MS Excel, CSV and PDF formats. The trip data can be viewed in a journey playback mode, says Mercedes-Benz.

The clever driver’s app comes as part of the Mercedes-Benz Telematics suite and is available for both Android and iOS platforms.

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It offers customers a range of options, including the ability for drivers to conduct a real-time pre-inspection on each vehicle, with an option to upload comments, and even photos, which are immediately sent to the fleet manager.

Mercedes-Benz has only recently introduced its bus and coach Telematics system and the system is currently being trialled by a number of fleets.

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TWO-PRONGED APPROACH

According to MAN distributors in Australia, Penske Commercial Vehicles, it uses Mix Telematics for its buses and coaches - though it had also used Caltex Telematics, which apparently was closed last year. 

 

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-    Mix Telematics

According to the company, its bus and coach telematics system helps, "Manage running costs, reduce carbon footprint, improve road safety, decrease accidents and improve passenger comfort and safety."

As a bus and coach operator, it’s essential to have complete visibility of your fleet at all times. The use of monitoring technologies, such as In Vehicle Monitoring Systems (IVMS) assists in improving efficiencies, cutting costs and solves your most difficult business challenges, according to Mix.

It says it offers IVMS through MiX SafeDrive, which comprises an on-board computer, an online tracking and information portal as well as access to powerful and valuable fleet and driver reports and analytics, enabling fleet managers to remain connected to their fleet at all times.

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The company says it has helped a number of bus and coach companies to realise significant benefits from using MiX Telematics solutions. With MiX SafeDrive, the company says bus and coach clients benefit from: ability to monitor driver behaviour to improve fuel efficiency and reduce accidents; ensuring the safety of their passengers; locating vehicles to determine on-time arrivals along pre-determined routes and at scheduled stops; locating vehicles to facilitate servicing and licensing procedures; and monitoring vehicles’ trip durations, as well as drivers’ working hours.

MiX SafeDrive Driver training comprises: specific driver development programmes, including online driver training for MiX SafeDrive; defensive driver training; heavy vehicle operators; four-wheel drive and recovery techniques; plus train the trainer programmes.

The RIBAS Display is an in-cab driving aid that helps drivers to improve their driving style. RIBAS stands for Ride Comfort (Cornering) or Over Revving, excessive Idling, harsh Braking, harsh Acceleration and over-Speeding, with drivers given feedback via an unobtrusive system of symbols with Red/Amber/Green (RAG) status lights, accompanied by warning tones.

-    Caltex Telematics

Caltex Telematics in Australia, powered by Traffilog, was a powerful, predictive and proven system that was already improving the operational efficiency and safety in more than 280,000 vehicles across 28 countries, it stated.

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By connecting directly to the vehicle CAN bus to collect, interpret and correlate CAN data, Caltex Telematics was the only solution able to provide business-ready actionable insights on how a vehicle is being mechanically driven and its overall health, the company stated.

Traffilog is a global provider of telematics solutions for the OEM, insurance and fleet management industries.

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