Featured Business: Freightliner

Freightliner is the Right Fit for Jerr-Dan When it Comes to Upfit

When it comes to truck equipment manufacturers, few brands are as well-known and respected as Jerr-Dan, the Hagerstown, Md., based company that has earned more than 25 patents for its innovations in the tow truck industry.

According to Jeff Irr, director of sales with Jerr-Dan, customer feedback drives the company’s engineering innovations. Willingness to listen to and respond to the “voice of the customer” is a primary reason why Jerr-Dan partners successfully with Freightliner® Vocational Trucks. The end result is better uptime performance and a lower Real Cost of OwnershipSM for towing companies.

“Freightliner listens to the customer for the features and benefits they need to deliver,” Irr says. “We were looking for a chassis that could fit in a niche market and we went to Freightliner. Their response was, ‘What can we do to make this happen?’   Together we developed an option package for the M2 106 that streamlined our upfit process and met the needs of the end user.”

The Freightliner M2 106 cab configurations — day cabs, extended cabs and quad cabs — provide the choices tow operators need. Whether towing cars alone or carrying an entire family and their vehicle home safely, the Freightliner M2 106 can be customized down to the wheels. The flexible chassis layouts of the M2 106 allow Jerr-Dan to tailor everything including the fuel tank location, power takeoff pumps, suspensions and wheel bases.

Irr says that Freightliner trucks offer ease of access to cab components and simple wiring interfaces, which save time in the upfit process. When you upfit hundreds of trucks a year, saving time in the upfit process is critical to business performance.

“When we receive a Freightliner Truck, we know we’re going to have little to no extended time to upfit the truck, so we can meet or exceed our customers’ delivery expectations. That equals more uptime for the customer,” Irr says. “We take a lot of pride in delivering above and beyond the customer’s expectations. Freightliner has always been there to assist us. We couldn’t ask for a better partner.”

Founded in 1972, Jerr-Dan manufactures vehicles in McConnellsburg, Pa. It has been a part of Oshkosh Corp. since 2004. Oshkosh designs and builds specialty trucks, truck bodies and access equipment in nine countries. The company employs 13,100 people, selling products and services in 130 countries around the world.

“One of the things we focus on is how we help the tower get home safe at night. They’re working on the side of the highway late at night. It’s extremely dangerous,” Irr says. To assist tow truck operators, Jerr-Dan was the first to offer dual controls on its tow vehicles, so the lift can be operated safely from the non-traffic side. With the fastest carrier roll-back and pitching speeds, and a RAIL™ (Rear Awareness Indicator Lights) lighting system, Jerr-Dan provides towing companies the ability to quickly and safely remove a disabled or crashed vehicle.

The Freightliner M2 106 is available with the choice of manual, automated manual or automatic transmissions. The medium duty work truck can be ordered with up to 16,000-pound front and 40,000-pound rear axles. The M2 106 supports a wide range of bodies and chassis-mounted equipment, and the SmartPlex® electrical system allows seamless integration of body and chassis electrical functions. SmartPlex also features Smart Switches that once programmed, do not require reprogramming if moved. The M2 106 includes a roomy, comfortable and well-appointed steel -reinforced aluminum cab with an ergonomically designed dash and the largest windshield in the category for outstanding driver visibility.