Creature comforts

Truck & DriverFebruary 2020

Creature comforts
To help improve its image among drivers, manufacturer MAN has created a highpower flagship, a beast – the Black Lion – that’s brimming with spec. Our overview is accompanied by the opinions of drivers
Peter Symons

We’ve acquired a real soft spot for MAN’s TGX. It’s solid, well-built and dependable. It’s easy to drive and, whether used for week-out tramping or longer-distance inter-urban distribution, it’s practical too. It’s also spacious and comfortable, making it easy to live with, whatever sector you work in.

MAN has big ambitions to position itself as a premium truck brand; a Volkswagen, perhaps, if you were to consider Scania as Audi. The TGX has evolved enormously over the years but has never managed to provoke the same kind of passion and loyalty as trucks such as Scania’s R-series, Volvo’s FH and Daf’s XF.

Post-2017 models are hugely competent and have proven popular with drivers, but the reputation of the earlier models with crude AS-Tronic gearbox has taken time to overcome and it still lacks the glamour of some rivals. We would encourage anyone to view the truck with fresh eyes. The latest models have neither squeaks nor rattles and don’t fall apart. Good-quality materials are used throughout; everything in the cab fits well, without any of the ‘plasticky’ criticism that was often levelled at earlier models. And MAN’s trucks now deliver: powerfully, reliably, economically.

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February 2020