Freightliner Classic

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For me, it is one of the most beautiful tractors of the past, today and even the future. I would characterize the appearance of the Freightliner Classic in two words – simplicity and beauty. This truck does not have the same aerodynamics as the Century and Columbia, although the Classic was produced at the same time. Therefore, the fuel consumption of such a truck will be higher, and the initial cost of such a truck is somewhat higher. Both of these points lead to the fact that in most cases private carriers become buyers of the Classic.

We are talking about drivers for whom besides good traction, reliability and maintainability, charisma and style are important. I think you will agree with me that no tractor can compare in wow-effect with Classic. This is the very car, which you see before Christmas, you start to believe in miracles again.
The Freightliner Classic was launched in ’91. According to some owners, the unladen Classic can start from 5th gear. Perhaps to a lesser extent than other Freightliner trucks, but the Classic was also in demand in Australia. There these trucks were equipped with a huge protection of the front end, in case a kangaroo jumped out in front of the truck.
Freightliner Classic was available with different types of cabins. The lowest and shortest cab was Day Cab, which was not designed for long trips. The 58 Flat Roof cab was already equipped with a sleeping compartment with a length of 1470 mm, although it did not have a high roof. However, many people like the Classic in the 70 Mid Roof version with a 1780mm long sleeper compartment (with a not too high roof, especially the exhaust pipes stand out). The highest cabs are designated 70 Raised Roof and 84 Raised Roof. The taller cabs are only slightly lower than the exhaust pipes at their highest point.

Freightliner Classic price and sale.

Looking through the Freightliner Classic classifieds I saw a 2000 truck for sale in Georgia with 1,100,000 miles and a price tag of $18,900. A 2008 truck for sale in Texas with 700,000 miles and a 14L Detroit Diesel engine with 490 horsepower is listed for $43,000. In general, a truck with 1,000,000 miles on average costs $30,000. A well-maintained truck can cost $100,000 or more.

Appearance and photos.

In the Freightliner Classic, the exhaust pipes are not only moved up, but they are also installed not behind the cab, but on the sides of it – right behind the doors. This solution does not contribute to aerodynamics, but it looks very stylish. The diameter of the Donaldson exhaust pipe is 12.6cm. You can see from the photo that the pipes have a bend at the top. This is done to keep leaves and other debris from getting into them. On the right side of the hood you can see the huge air wilt housing. Even it is decorated with three yellow, parking lights. This housing also affects the aerodynamics, but this arrangement is extremely convenient when there is a need to start the engine with the airwheel. Noise from the exhaust and air filter housing, in spite of 4cm thick deshumkuyku, can be heard in the cabin.
The split windshields do not have any curve, – they are absolutely flat. What about the huge, chrome-plated bumper? It’s 410mm high. Many passenger cars have a lower hood line than the Classic has a bumper. By the way, – the XL modification has 335 cm from the front bumper to the wall of the sleeping compartment. In addition to the longer hood, Classic XL can be recognized by the inscription under the doors. The grille is also huge, larger than some apartments windows.

Despite the abundance of chrome and monumentality, as on the Century, or Columbia, the hood lid is made of plastic. This decision makes it easier for the driver to lift the hood alone. I would like to draw your attention to how many rivets are on the Classic cab. This solution also has a certain spirit of antiquity and reliability of classic American trucks.
Classic is equipped with open, fuel bumpers, which are not hidden under plastic fairings for the sake of better streamlining. Standard tanks hold 530 liters each, but their capacity can vary. Some drivers have equipped their Classic with tanks that take up the length of the entire wheelbase.
Additional mirrors fixed on the hood have a round shape and are not too large in area. But would large mirrors in a plastic housing look good on such a hood?
As in the case of Century and Columbia, the rear of the cab is mounted on two air bags and two shock absorbers. Also at the rear, the transmission radiator is mounted under the cab.
The upper steps can be removed. There is a tool box under the right step and a compartment for four batteries on the left step.

Interior and equipment.

In the Raised Roof cab you can stand up to your full height from the driver’s seat. The height of the Raised Roof cab is 2300mm.

Of course, under the Classic roof lining there is a pneumatic signal loop. At the same time, you can use a conventional, electric horn on the steering wheel. The latter is adjustable in angle of inclination.
As on other Freightliner trucks, the clutch on the Classic with manual transmission is depressed only when moving off. Some Classic trucks are equipped with a brake lock, which can be removed with a key. These tractors were equipped with a Panasonic stereo with four speakers. Not only the driver’s seat, but also the passenger seat can be mounted on air suspension.

There is a sunroof in the roof. There are side hatches in the sleeping compartment as well. The right door also has a window to monitor the area under the starboard side of the truck. The door handles have Freightliner lettering. The door windows can be electrically operated.
An air filter clogging sensor can be installed among the gauges. The fuse box and relays are located right under the ashtray. Of course, many trucks were equipped with refrigerators and autonomous heating system.

Engine and technical characteristics of Freightliner Classic.

As well as other Freightliner trucks, the Classic was equipped with Caterpillar, Detroit Diesel and Cummins engines. I think you all know that the last one was painted in red color, and Cat in yellow.
Detroit Diesel 12.7 liters gives out 330 horsepower and with a main pair of 3.36:1, allows you to reach a speed of 116 km per hour. If I remember correctly, this is the least powerful engine fitted to the Classic. The more powerful Detroit has 14 liters of displacement.

The 14.6 liter Caterpillar makes 460 horsepower.
The Eaton Fuller manual transmissions have 10 and 13 gears. As you know, these gearboxes are not equipped with synchronizers and have a huge resource.
On all axles the suspension is leaf spring and the brakes are drum. These decisions also contribute to reliability and high ressource.

This is a stunningly beautiful car, the power of which in some modifications reaches up to 600 horsepower, which is a decent indicator even today. In addition, there are many tuning kits for Classic, which not only make the appearance of the tractor unique, but also significantly increase the power of the engine.

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