30 October 2021

Miscellaneous classics #8: Mercedes Atego

I guess it's one of those moments where I have to clear my backlog, and that this has been sitting in the archives for a long while. Being caught up with work also means that I have less time to work on the blog, so it would have to be something that does not take up much resources in planning on what to write. Speaking of this, I naturally thought on writing about the few commercial vehicles that I have seen, and I was reminded of this 2001 Mercedes Atego 1517/5360 that I saw some time ago!

The Atego (internal code W970) was introduced in 1998 as the successor to the LK series. It was made available in different cab sizes, from S to L high-roof version, along with different wheelbases between 3020 mm and 6260 mm. Different tonnages were available and designated in the following format: 7xx for 6.5 tonnes, 8xx for 8 tonnes and so on. The 'X's following the designation is the engine horsepower but given as a tenth. Thus, this particular unit thus has a tonnage of 11.99 tonnes based on its 15xx designation with a horsepower of about 170 hp, and its wheelbase was 5360 mm long.

In 2000, a heavy version of the Atego chassis was brought to the market, with designations 1533 and 1833. A year later, the Axor truck replaced the heavy Atego chassis and became a standalone model. The Atego, which remains in production today, went through a facelift in 2004 with wider indicators and a revised front end to be more aligned with the Actros. This Atego was powered by a 4249 cc OM904 94 engine, with a maximum power of 174 hp. It was 6900 mm long and had an unladen weight of 6080 kg, with a gross weight of 11990 kg.

Production of the first-generation Atego ended in 2004 with about 170,000 made, where it was followed by the second generation. It is likely that there are no first-gen Ategos left in Singapore, although a handful of second-generation units still see service under the fire brigade. This particular unit was owned by an art logistics company, which makes sense for it to be so huge. It was fortuitous running into this truck as I only took the picture since its number plate was relatively old. I was therefore pleasantly surprised to find out that it was already a classic this year. However, that also meant that its lifespan was up and sure enough, it had been scrapped.

To be honest, I was not expecting anyone to even know that this actually existed here, such is the general perception of heavy-duty vehicles. As always, I will continue to give these workhorses their much-deserved spotlight just because I would like to. Now that you have heard of this, I hope that you may be able to recognise it in the future..



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