FIRST released in Europe in April 2010, the Volvo FMX has arrived in Australia.
The FMX is based on the popular FM distribution model but has been slightly modified aesthetically and repackaged for the construction and quarrying market.
Volvo is leveraging off its heavy industry division, with customers already getting support and service from Volvo Trucks and Volvo Construction Equipment in the same workshops.
The two companies also collaborated closely during the development of Powertronic automatic gearbox and the powerful D13, 13-litre engine.
The guts of the new FMX are the same, with an untouched driveline from the current FM platform.
What is new is a new robust styling.
The new upper grille, inspired by the FH series, contributes to a modern look and does well to complement the range. The lower front has been extended 165mm.
The steel bumper is in a 3-part design: 3mm thick steel outer corners. This is to make it easy to change if it gets damaged to reduce downtime.
It has very handy headlights that clean themselves.
The headlight design with durable headlight mesh protection helps prevent stone chipping, without interfering with the optional high-pressure headlight cleaner.
Boosted is the mirror installation that is built to better withstand external damage and scratching, while the narrow mirror arm helps reduce the blind spot in this area for improved visibility from the driver position.
On the 6 x 6 model, heavy-duty engine protection helps protect vital components and new rugged steel fuel tanks have been raised for higher clearance. This is a fully imported model.
A new, higher air intake position on the day cab optimises the quality of the air to the engine, while also improving visibility when reversing.
New robust rubber mats with flanges to keep dirt and mud within the mat area for easy cleaning.
The most noticeable difference is a central towing device on the front of the cab. It adds about 100kg on the front axle and can tow 25 tonne.
The heavy-duty central towing device as a spin-off effect of helping to protect the vital components behind it and is a tool for towing or shunting.
It also comes with neat safety devices, including anti-slip steps and a new ladder and a grab handle system that allows drivers the ability to check their loads by crabbing over to the top of their load without the need to touch the ground, a handy feature when it is raining and the conditions are muddy. The anti-slip cab instep with an optional foldable extension step helps ensure the best possible grip in all weather conditions.
It comes in various configurations including 6x4, 8x4 and the fully imported 6x6 variation model as well as the day cab and sleeper options.
The FMX is available in both an 11-litre and 13-litre options with the D11 and D13 with outputs of 410 to 500hp.
It also has the I-Shift automated gearbox option which had been refined over 10 years and that provides smooth gear sequence with a software upgrade for the on/off road version to provide a seamless drive.
It is available with the fully two versions of the automatic Powertronic box and two versions of the manual box with 14-speed splitter and range change gearbox with four reverse gears.
"Our present Volvo FM has been very successful. With the new, purpose-engineered Volvo FMX, and our optimised service support package, we aim to grow our share in this business significantly," Volvo's Gary Bone said.