Truckie to fight charge over fatal crash

A truckie will fight a culpable driving charge in a Melbourne court, admitting to a lesser offence.

A truck driver has admitted to causing a man's death in a five-car Melbourne pile-up but will fight a charge of culpable driving, a court has heard.

Michael Brian Templeton, 30, is charged with culpable driving causing the death of 49-year-old Kari-Pekka Maunus in a smash on the Calder Freeway at Taylors Lakes in March.

It is alleged Templeton was affected by the illegal drug ice at the time of the crash.

He faced court on Tuesday, where lawyer Oliver Smith said his client will fight the culpable driving charge after offering to admit the lesser offence of dangerous driving causing death.

"So the only thing (in contention) is culpability - by way of negligence or if he was so affected by drugs," Mr Smith told the Melbourne Magistrates' Court.

A committal hearing is scheduled for January 25 when a magistrate will decide how the case progresses after hearing from 14 witnesses, including other drivers and police.

Prosecutors allege Templeton swerved his tip truck erratically while on the city-bound section of the freeway and collided with a ute driven by Mr Maunus.

He is facing five charges, including culpable driving causing death, dangerous driving causing death and recklessly endangering lives.