This year, with live, on-site product demonstrations temporarily halted, Bendix is altering its ride-and-drive demo event to be held Thursday, Sept. 24, by hosting two live-action demos — the Bendix Virtual Trucking Demo and the Bendix Virtual School Bus Demo — each a livestreamed event broadcast via satellite.
Like a traditional demonstration, the virtual demos will give fleets, owner-operators, drivers, dealers, school bus officials and other industry professionals a firsthand, live view of advanced safety systems in action, but in a virtual setting, the company says.
The virtual demos — generating from Northeast Ohio, near Bendix’s Elyria headquarters — will showcase a full range of the company’s integrated safety solutions for tractor-trailers and school buses, while giving participants a close-up look at how the technologies work in everyday situations. Attendees will experience in-the-passenger-seat and on-track views of real-time maneuvers as the production will employ multiple camera angles, split screens and replays.
While a departure from Bendix’s 15 consecutive years of popular ride-and-drive demos, currently paused because of the pandemic, the two virtual events will provide many of the same benefits in an all-new experience.
“2020 has been an unconventional year that requires unconventional thinking. At Bendix, we’re driven to create the best solutions, so even though we can’t host traditional demos at the moment, we still want to provide a firsthand, inside look at what our technologies can do for fleets, drivers, and others across our industry,” says Nicole Oreskovic, Bendix vice president, marketing, product planning and sales operations.
“These unique live-action events will showcase all of our newest safety technologies as they’re installed on tractor-trailers and school buses so industry professionals can learn how they perform in real-world situations and understand their return on investment. For further insight, participants can join in view polls, live chat with Bendix specialists, and ask questions in real time,” Oreskovic says.
Since 2014, the Bendix demo team has traveled regularly to destinations around the U.S. and Canada, conducting some 400 demos for almost 7,000 participants.
By hosting the livestreamed demos, Bendix will provide an alternative to those events to help fleets see the technologies perform live while meeting the industry’s need to work remotely.
“With the virtual format, more fleets and drivers will have the opportunity to see the advanced technologies in action, not just those within the typical two-hour radius of a regional demonstration,” says Fred Andersky, Bendix director, demos, sales and service training. “No matter your location, you can participate and discover new solutions. We believe this dynamic new approach will be very appealing for everyone.”
Fleets, owner-operators, drivers, trainers and technicians tuning in for the Bendix virtual demos will see Bendix’s integrated safety technologies as equipped on a tractor-trailer (during the morning session) and a school bus (in the afternoon). The no-cost interactive demos will include maneuvers showing the technologies in use on the test track.
Registered participants are not required to attend the entire duration of either session. By referring to the detailed program that will be provided, attendees can review the options to select and tune in for the specific technologies of interest to them.
The Bendix Virtual Trucking Demo, highlighting technologies for tractor-trailers, is scheduled for 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET on Sept. 24. It will feature:
- Bendix Wingman Fusion New Features Showcase
- Bendix Air Disc Brakes vs. Drum Brakes Comparison
- Foundations for Future Autonomy Spotlight
Also incorporated in the truck demo will be a member of the American Trucking Associations’ (ATA) Road Team Captains — a select group of professional truck drivers who share superior driving skills, remarkable safety records and a strong desire to spread the word about safety on the highway — along with the ATA’s Share the Road vehicle equipped with a range of Bendix safety technologies.
Meanwhile, the Bendix Virtual School Bus Demo will take place from 3-4 p.m. ET on Sept. 24. The demo will occur as part of the Bus Technology Summit, a virtual conference and trade show presented by School Transportation News. Bendix’s virtual demo will feature:
- Bendix Wingman Family of Collision Mitigation Technologies
- Bendix ESP Full-Stability System
- Bendix ADB22X Air Disc Brakes
- Bendix Intellipark Electronic Parking Brake
“The Bendix virtual demos will also help participants put into context the discussions taking place around autonomous vehicles, where there’s often a lot of hype,” Andersky says. “The demos will show practical applications of advanced technologies engineered to help fleets and drivers be safer on the roadway and provide a look at the trajectory of where the technology is going. Our core message has not changed: As technology evolves, drivers continue to be vitally important.”
Once registered, attendees will receive a web link via email through which they’ll access and view the livestreamed broadcast. Since the two broadcasts are accessed through their own URLs, attendees wishing to view both demonstrations will need to register for each event separately.