The color of the Mack Trucks bulldog hood ornament has specific meaning.
Gold plating denotes a truck made with a Mack-produced drivetrain, engine, transmission and drive-axles. Chrome means components from another manufacturer are on board.
Now, for the first time in its 98-year history, Mack the Bulldog comes in black.
It is part of the Mack Black Anthem limited edition revealed October 28 at the North American Commercial Vehicle Show in Atlanta.
“The most badass truck on the road just got even badder,” said John Walsh, Mack vice president of marketing. “This focuses on one of our corporate colors and it is a way to reward a fleet’s best drivers.”
Mack promoted the truck as what it meant to be “Back in the Black,” a nod to a trucker’s goal of making money. The slogan comes close but doesn’t intrude on rock band AC/DC’s signature anthem “Back in Black.”
Designers started with a 70” stand-up sleeper model painted Mack Black and added a black exterior trim package. A bold black Mack wordmark spreads across the grille. Cab steps and deck plates are powder-coated in black. Flat black trim stripes are added to the air intakes on each side of the hood.
Mack did not stop there. Black mud flap brackets, black aluminum fuel tanks, Alcoa Durablack aluminum wheels and a limited edition Anthem doorplate are also part of the package.
The interior begins with a blacked-out version of Mack’s Ultra interior trim level and adds black wood accents to the dash and door panels and black-painted gauge bezels in the instrument cluster. The flat-bottomed steering wheel is wrapped in, you guessed it, black leather. Spokes are black with gray stitching.
Seats are covered in a diamond-stitched pattern of black leather with the black Mack Bulldog
logo embroidered on the headrest. The diamond-stitched leather is on each door panel, the sleeper cab’s side and rear wall trims.
“We showed a blacked-out concept at the launch of the Anthem in 2017 and received incredible feedback from drivers,” said Roy Horton, Mack Trucks director of product strategy.
Mack competitor Peterbilt got to the black market first, debuting a Blackout Exterior Package for the Model 579 earlier this year. It features black effect exterior paint for the cab and sleeper, Alcoa Dura-Black matte aluminum wheels and a black finish grille crown.