Aussie-built Mack Anthem arrives

In News, Mack6 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJanuary 19, 2021

Mack Trucks Australia has revealed a revamped model line-up that centres on the Mack Anthem, originally launched in North America during 2018. The new right-hand drive model is built and engineered in Australia. The all new model line-up offers a new stand-up sleeper cab, redesigned interior, and new transmission options. 

The Mack Anthem will be available as a sleeper or day cab and will be available in 6×4 and 8×4 rigid guise or as a 6×4 prime mover.

Engines and transmissions

Powering the Anthem is the proven 13-litre Euro 5 MP8 engine with power ratings ranging from 324 – 400kW (435 – 535hp) and torque of 2243 – 2603Nm (1655 – 1920lb-ft). The mDrive automated manual transmission gets some extra low gearing with the arrival of the mDrive HD and mDrive XHD transmissions. By providing options of deep reduction gearing these transmissions offer safer heavy hauling at high gross weights with excellent start ability/gradeability, eliminating the need for auxiliary transmissions, says the company.

The 13-speed mDrive HD offers a single reduction gear that not only helps for heavy lift offs, it also allows fuel conscious highway operators to specify taller final drive ratios to maximise fuel efficiency. The 14-speed mDrive XHD is designed to offer heavy haulage operators safe and flexible handling of big loads. 

These new mDrive transmissions also bring new features such as a “Rock Free” mode to allow the driver to rock the truck back and forwards easily if needing to gain traction off-road. A “Power Launch” function for off-road low-traction starts as well as Heavy-Duty and Maxi-Duty transmission modes for high GCM operation.

Both transmissions are available behind both the 13-litre MP8 and 16-litre MP10 engines in the Anthem, Trident and Super Liner models.


The Anthem has quite a different look to Mack‘s other Australian offerings. Aerodynamic gains have been aided by closing gaps between panels and minimising seams. Even the tow hooks in the 3-piece bumper have been covered to assist with air flow. A single-point bonnet latch makes daily checks safer and easier reducing the effort needed to tilt the bonnet. 

All exterior lighting is now handled by LEDs, boosting headlight output by 66% over previous incandescent bulbs.

New Sleeper

A 36” integrated stand up sleeper cab is now an option for Anthem, Trident and Super Liner models. The new cab features 1.8 metres of headroom in the cockpit and 2.1 metres of headroom in the sleeper compartment.

The extra overhead space allows for additional storage in the driver‘s compartment; while in the bunk, above the standard inner-spring mattress features sturdy overhead storage cupboards. LED courtesy lighting, 12-volt power outlets as well as USB charging ports are also featured in the new sleeper cab.

There‘s also the option of a slide out under-bunk fridge. Exterior locker boxes can also be accessed from the inside of the truck by lifting the bed.

A new interior design offers large, easy to read analogue gauges and tough laser etched rocker switches. The mDrive transmission controls remain on the dash panel, however controlling the Powerleash engine brake is now done via a steering column mounted multi-function stalk.

A 5-inch colour digital Co-Pilot display lets drivers navigate various digital menus and functions a while on the move. 

Safety and connectivity

An integrated Bendix Wingman Fusion active safety system is standard equipment in the new Mack Anthem providing adaptive cruise control, blind spot alerts, autonomous braking and roll stability. Much of the system‘s functionality can be accessed via the Co-Pilot display.

A new electrical architecture across the range means Mack‘s new generation of trucks are smarter and more connected. Optional Predictive Cruise control allow the truck to record topographic data to optimise engine and transmission performance and, consequently, save fuel.

“I‘m very excited to see these new trucks emerge from our Wacol factory,” says Vice President Mack Trucks, Gary Bone. “The Anthem takes our brand in a bold new direction and our new stand up sleeper cab gives long haul operators a fantastic new environment to both work and rest in.

“The Mack brand has built up an enviable reputation over the last century for building tough uncompromising trucks that get the job done in some of the most inhospitable environments on the planet,” he adds.

New Zealand sales will start at the same time as Australia, early February 2021.

Watch the new trucks being unveiled here: