Test Drive

Volvo will have the right solution

ALONG with the new models we got to drive some heavy duty UD trucks around the test track.

The GW26 420 was a great drive. It has a four-stage engine brake that works well to slow the truck down.

It has an AMT and you can change gears at a whim, even in auto mode.

I went back a gear manually while going downhill in auto and the truck responded well; I-Roll held the speed even when I took my foot off the accelerator so we cruised down, saving fuel.

The Fleet Max Plus telematics system was also a great tool to see how efficiently we drove.

During the drive day we used RFID tags to log onto each truck, which then gave results on our performance.

Apparently I managed to beat Volvo Australia president Peter Voorhoeve in the MK 250 by 0.1 of a litre, however his lap was more than one minute quicker.

UD vice-president Jon McLean said UD trucks now came with the enhanced telematics fleet management system as standard.

Mr McLean explained that UD might not have the "full range" like its competitors but it competed with 60% of the medium duty market.

Now the last of the HD 470s has been sold they're focussing on the Quon 380 and 420 models.

Mr McLean said he was really proud of the combinations UD has available in the heavy duty market and the 420 was the biggest product for UD until a Euro 6 model.

Mr Voorhoeve said UD wouldn't be bringing back the 470.

"We're a multi-brand company with a multi-brand strategy," he said.

"It didn't make too much sense to have the 13lt in the UD offering."

He's convinced you can find the solution you need within the Volvo Group's brands, whether it is a UD, Mack or Volvo.

He said the number of customers with two or three different Volvo Group brands in their fleets was increasing.

Group technology is rolling out to all three brands, though it will take a few years for it to be fully implemented.

Topics:  test drive transport truck driver trucking trucks

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