Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Mixed Review On New Truck Offering

Matt and I had a look at the new trucks the company is buying. The reviews are mixed. The new truck is called Cascadia by Freightliner and has a new look, but not that new.

First the good bits.

1) Better insulation! The walls are thicker and better sealed, which means fewer ear drops for me when it gets cold. The Century we have now lets an arctic breeze in through the window crank and the door handle. Our current truck has to start up and shut off very frequently while we sleep in order to blow hot or cold air to maintain a comfortable temperature. No longer an issue.

2) Bunk furnace! Now we don't have to run the truck at all during the winter months. We can leave it shut off at night and sleep with no disturbing vibrations or shaking, thanks to a separate heating unit in the sleeper compartment where Matt and I snooze.

3) Better fuel economy! I don't really understand this one, but Matt says it means the company is less likely to go belly-up with lower fuel costs.

4) Comfy seats! Good for Matt. I lay on the dashboard.

5) Closet doors on closets! No more mesh nets that allow junk to spill out onto my tender little brain-cover. My noggin will be happier for it.

And now the not so good bits...

1) A/C not separate! We still have to idle the stupid truck in the Summer months just to stay cool. If Matt leaves the top sleeper windows open and the bottom vents open and the front windows open a little I won't die from suffocation. Also helps if he leaves the blower on low (so as not to drain the battery) to keep some sort of air circulation.

2) Power windows on both sides! Personally I have no problem with this. All I need to do is stomp on the buttons located on the inside door panels and the windows open up...FOR ME! I can get out and run around and get lost in joyful abandon. Matt says I will wind up in the kitchen of a Korean restaurant if this happens, even though I assure him I would return...eventually.

3) Power door locks on both sides! This means I can step on the buttons to allow strangers in the truck to pet me and give me treats while Matt is away...or asleep in the bunk. I get so lonely when he's gone. Again, no problem for me. And I don't see too many Koreans in truckstops.

4) Brake-seize-up-thingy! There is this thing that causes the brakes to seize up if you get too close to another truck or 4-wheel thingy, all for the sake of safety. I really don't know much about this except that the trucker we spoke to yesterday swore a lot about it...and loudly. I learned lots of new words yesterday, but cannot yet manipulate my mouth or tongue to speak them. Matt won't allow me to type them.

5) No place for the XM Radio antenna! In fact Matt says there is no where to attach anything at all on these new Cascadias. No flags, no banners, no CB antennas except a mount for small antennas only.

6) Limited storage! No more big open storage space above the windshield for me to jump up into (that makes Matt so angry!). Matt will miss it, too.

Matt says progress is two steps forward but one step backwards. I fail to see the logic there as lessons are usually painful to learn. Why take the one step back? Do humans forget the pain involved in learning? Go figure. Anyway we will probably be getting a new truck in March or so when the old one gets turned in. The old one should have 500,000 miles on it by then, maybe more.

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