A Bigger B-triple

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At the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator PBS demonstration event in Portland this week a new groundbreaking combination hits the streets, it’s a bigger B-triple, a lot bigger at 42 metres long and with a GCM of 82.5 tonnes. The much increased length means this combination suits high cube loading and will be going into service with Direct Freight Express as soon as the demo day is over.

This new vehicle marks a change in the development of the B-triple. In the past the push has always been towards a modular B-triple with set lengths for the lead trailers and the dog. In fact the B-triple has had limited success as the A-double has come on stream with similar capacity but as a more flexible after the combination is broken up.

This long B-triple is able to travel on PBS Level 3B roads which basically equates to the Type 1 Doubles over 36 metres in length network. Its much improved swept path performance should see operators get access beyong the as of right 3B in certain circumstances.

That improved swept path comes from four steering axles on the trailers. there are two on the first lead trailer and one on the second with the rear trailer also having one steer axle. This also reduces drag on the prime mover, road damage and tyre wear, as well as enabling the three trailers to negotiate roundabouts and other intersections.

These trailers as demonstrated are specified for high cube express post and time sensitive parcel freight. The trailers are 4.6 metres high with double drop decks all round. The gaps between the trailer bodies has been minimised to reduce wind drag. 

The combination also utilises all of the latest safety systems with EBS, ABS and Rollover protection and it’s all monitored in the Intelligent Access Program.

This is what the whole PBS project was supposed to be about, pushing the limits to enable operators to find real productivity gains while running safer trucks out on the highway. 

a bigger B-triple