Driving a Classic, a V8 Super Liner

Retro Test 3 – Time Machine

It’s a small blue box, and there’s a dog along for the ride, but this is no Dr Who Tardis – this is a true time machine, one that stirs the blood of its occupants, and everyone within a kilometre who has memories of a world less complicated! This is the third instalment of a semi-regular series we’ve called Retro Tests. We’re going to sample trucks from the great era that spanned the early 70s, through until the early 90s, roughly … there are no hard and fast rules. To some degree we aim to investigate just how far we’ve come (if we’ve come that far at all), but the main thrust is to have a bit of fun, go on a nostalgic trip, enjoy a few laughs, and rekindle some fantastic yarns and memories from a great period in our transport history that’s now gone.The main delivery media for the Retro Tests will be video, with print as the support – in other words, opposite from the magazine’s main test. We hope you enjoy watching and reading them as much as we do putting them together.Mack V8 Super Liner Mini Me Take Off: https://youtu.be/fiLDhjpONpMMain Test. Clever Reflections – Mack Trident: https://youtu.be/atCPXFMbNGk #newvideo #retro #test #retrotest #mack #superliner #macksuperliner #bulldog #trucks #trucking #trucklife #truckdaily #transport #roadtransport #freight #roadfreight #nztruckingmagazine #newzealand

Posted by NZ Trucking magazine on Monday, 11 May 2020
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Here we have friends of Diesel News, NZ Trucking Magazine’s Dave McCoid and Carl Kirkbeck, taking us back to the early nineties and having a go at driving a classic, a V8 Super Liner. This is the truck which made so many people in the trucking industry Mack fans.

The first five minutes of this video let us just sit back and watch a classic truck haul a full load up a winding mountain climb. This is the Mack Super Liner truck at its best.

There’s something about the old trucks of this time and there’s definitely something about a V8, whether it’s in a truck or a car. This model was peak V8 and one of the most memorable models to come out of the Mack organisation.

Talk to people who used to drove them and their eyes glaze over and they drift off into a short daydream, probably driving at full noise through a cutting or a tunnel with the windows wound down, where it was possible to get the best appreciation of this unmistakeable engine noise.

Just sitting in the driver’s seat brings back memories of just what it was like to drive these trucks, back in the day. All of those aspects of these trucks which are unthinkable today come to mind. My last experience of taking the wheel on a R Series Mack for a full shift was back in 2002, and looking back now I wouldn’t want to repeat the experience on a regular basis.

The air start also presents us with an unforgettable sound, capable of waking up any sleeping truck driver within earshot. The cramped, narrow cab leaves no room for much at all. Driving a classic, a V8 Super Liner, the low roof and minimal driver’s seat suspension make for a working day during which the driver felt every bump and received the odd bang to the head on the bigger ones.

Anyone who drove trucks at that time will tell you how much they enjoyed driving these classics. However, ask them if the would be willing to put in a couple of weeks of full shifts in a truck like this today and they would run a mile. 

The kiwi boys even try an recreate a classic V8 Super Liner video clip, where Mini Me, a Heavy Haulage Australia prime mover, took off on a long straight flat road in South Australia pulling a Drake eight line platform trailer with a 300 tonne mobile crane on board.

Here’s the original:


driving a classic, a V8 Super Liner