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CONTENTS

Issue 208 – December 2017/January 2018

2 News The latest in the world of transport, including….Tesla says its just-unveiled electric truck has an 800km range; NZ Road Transport Industry Award winners; Jimmy Barnes stars in trucking company birthday party; longtime truckie wins NZ Truck Driving Championship

22 Goodyear Big Test The Zig-Zag at the Queenstown end of the Crown Range Road is a decent challenge in a loaded truck at any time – let alone taking a brand-new truck (and a step-up to an HPMV vehicle, at that!) up the switchbacks for the first time….with New Zealand Truck & Driver along for the ride! Given that there are extra challenges – including the extra length of the Mack Super-Liner truck and trailer unit and plenty of tourist drivers, it’s little wonder that driver Rhys Jones has been a bit worried about it

39 Transport Forum Latest news from the Road Transport Forum NZ, including…..new Government needs to continue making major investments in transport infrastructure;

MANAGEMENT Publisher Advertising

Trevor Woolston 027 492 5600 trevor@trucker.co.nz Trevor Woolston 027 492 5600 trevor@trucker.co.nz Hayden Woolston 027 448 8768 hayden@trucker.co.nz

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Wayne Munro 021 955 099 waynemunro@xtra.co.nz

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CONTRIBUTORS

research project under way to make railway crossings safer; work is under way to better recognise truck driver skills

50 Fleet Focus It’s an Auckland company that’s now been around for 50 years, but boss James Gleeson reckons that Gleeson & Cox often get referred to as “the minute men” – because that’s how regularly you see their trucks. Given that the white and blue-striped red company trucks now number 112, it’s probably not much of an exaggeration

FEATURES 71 Insect-inspired Isuzu Truckmaker Isuzu says its aim is to support truck drivers with “unconventional ideas.” It blitzes that approach at the Tokyo Motor Show….with a concept metro delivery truck inspired by insects!

91 Existing tech delivers big fuel saving A demo of how much fuel can be saved using technologies already on the market has produced remarkable results

101 Out of America North American correspondent Steve Sturgess finds that Navistar is living up to its rebuilding programme promise – of launching a new International model every six months

80/ PPG Transport Imaging 81 Awards Recognising NZ’s best-looking truck fleets….including a giant pullout poster of this month’s finalist

111 TRT Recently Registered New truck and trailer registrations for October

81 Old Iron Heatons is a name that existed in road transport for around 60 years – at one

Gerald Shacklock Dean Evans Steve Sturgess Tim Salix Hayden Cox Robin Yates Andrew Geddes

ART DEPARTMENT Design & Production Luca Bempensante Zarko Mihic EQUIPMENT GUIDE AUCKLAND, NORTHLAND, BOP, WAIKATO, CENTRAL NORTH ISLAND Advertising Don Leith 027 233 0090 don@trucker.co.nz AUCKLAND, LOWER SOUTH ISLAND Advertising

stage boasting a fleet of 80 trucks. Now it’s another one that’s long gone

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Truck & Driver | 1


NEWS

NEW ZEALAND ROAD TRANSPORT INDUSTRY AWARDG

Woolston wins industry award

The NZ Express Transport team with its UDC Finance Outstanding Contribution to Training Award NEW ZEALAND TRUCK & DRIVER PUBLISHER TREVOR Woolston has been honoured with the VTNZ Supreme Contribution to Road Transport Award at the Road Transport Forum annual conference’s awards dinner. Forum chief executive Ken Shirley said at the NZ Road Transport Industry Awards that NZ Truck & Driver magazine “is one of the industry’s most identifiable brands and is available extensively throughout the country.” However, he added, Woolston’s work for the industry goes beyond the magazine. “As many people recognise, Trevor’s passion for road transport has led to him being one of the industry’s staunchest advocates. Trevor supports many of the industry’s events and is particularly passionate about promoting the sector to school students and young people.” Shirley added: “Trevor is also not shy in letting the industry know where we can improve, particularly in regards to addressing issues such as the driver shortage. It’s this kind of honesty and integrity that make him such an outstanding contributor to the road transport community.” Woolston, who’s been involved in the industry since starting work as a driver for Mitchell Transport in Ohaupo in 1974, then buying an R Model Mack and becoming an owner/driver with Dibble Transport in 1979, started NZ Truck & Driver in 1999. He’d co-founded NZ Trucking magazine in 1985 and organised the Transport shows at Mystery Creek and Hopuhopu, Ngaruawahia, between 1989 and 2001. He was also instrumental in launching truck racing in NZ and promoting a highly-successful national race series for a number of years. The RTF said that his award reflects “the positive advancement of the industry’s values and a longterm personal commitment to the industry.” Shirley said that “such an intensely competitive and adaptable industry as road transport naturally includes a high number of passionate people and some exceptional innovators who really know how to provide the best possible

NZ Truck & Driver publisher Trevor Woolston and wife (and admin manager) Sue celebrate his VTNZ Supreme Contribution to Road Transport Award service to their customers.” This year’s award winners, he added, “exemplify a people-first approach to the way they do business, as well as being open to new technologies and the significant benefits that come with training and professional development.” Christchurch-based NZ Express Transport was awarded the UDC Finance Outstanding Contribution to Training Award and the Forum said that the company has in recent years “deliberately taken on a number of inexperienced drivers and staff and has invested in their training and professional development. “This commitment to training has provided the company with a workforce it’s proud of and a group of people who are dedicated to the improvement of the business.’ The Sime Darby NZ Outstanding Contribution to Health & Safety Award was won by Tranzliquid’s Jackie Carroll – the Forum saying that in her role as the Tauranga company’s director and health and safety manager, she has” made a significant contribution to Tranzliquid’s professional and caring health and safety culture. “She has implemented a number of initiatives that have resulted in outstanding health and safety performance, including upskilling other staff to take more responsibility for health and safety issues within the organisation.” The Teletrac Navman Outstanding Contribution to Innovation Award was won by Waste Management NZ – a company which has, as a key initiative in its “sustainability commitment,” a transition to an electric vehicle fleet. As well as replacing some of its 800-truck fleet with electric vehicles, the company is investing in reusing its landfills as methane-capturing energy parks to generate electricity. Said the RTF: “Each diesel-powered vehicle replaced by an electric truck saves Waste Management 125 litres of diesel per day. The company’s plan is to open a workshop in Auckland in 2018 so that its future electric conversions can be done in NZ, while also supporting other companies who wish to follow their lead.” T&D Far left: Tranzliquid’s Jackie Carroll received her Sime Darby Outstanding Contribution to Health & Safety Award from Sime Darby’s Chris Brown Left: The Waste Management team with the Teletrac Navman Outstanding Contribution to Innovation Award

2 | Truck & Driver


NEWS

Tesla Semi charges into the limelight Story North American correspondent Steve Sturgess THE MUCH-HYPED TESLA SEMI ELECTRIC HEAV Y -duty truck has been launched in the United States – with many innovative details revealed to back up the PR spin. Tesla CEO and product architect Elon Musk stepped down from the cab of one of two examples of the long-awaited Tesla to highlight its features before an audience of around 1200 people – many of them journalists from around the world. He was greeted with rousing cheers. Musk extolled the performance features of the Semi: A range of 500 miles/800 kilometres, zero to 60mph/100km/h for the tractor only in just five seconds – in 30s with a fully-loaded (to 80,000 lbs/36,287kg) semi-trailer combination. But most significantly for the truckers in the audience, a cost per mile of $US1.25, comparing favourably to the current diesel truck cost of $US1.51. Musk said that Tesla is aiming for zero breakdowns in a million miles (1.6million kilometres) of operation. The reveal confirmed what spy and tease photos had already disclosed: A cab-forward Class 8 truck with exceptionally smooth lines, promising great aerodynamic performance. Musk said that the range is enabled by exceptional aerodynamics – the Semi scoring a drag coefficient of 0.36, better even than a Bugatti Chiron supercar. He also pointed out the cab side extenders that actively fill the gap between tractor and trailer – contributing to the overall low drag. They make the tractor look like a sleeper. The purely battery-electric trucks – due to go into production in 2019 – will most likely fill a distribution and drayage role, at least in the early stages. Musk said that 80% of truck distribution is less than 500 miles/800kms, so the Semi can achieve such runs on a single charge. For longer trips, the batteries can pick up a 400-mile/640km charge in a driver’s compulsory halfhour break. And Tesla Fast Chargers are popping up globally, in every region where Tesla sells its cars – and the trucks can use the same chargers. The driver environment is a highlight of the Tesla. A central driver’s seat gives

a commanding view behind the enormous curved windscreen. The side glass flows smoothly around surprisingly thin A-pillars, so the driver’s view forward is excellent. The small, car-like steering wheel is flanked by customisable flatpanel displays from the Model 3 Tesla cars. The truck is also equipped with full Tesla accident avoidance technology that prevents collisions and keeps the truck in-lane. It also includes Tesla’s autonomous driving technology, and enables three-truck platooning, said Musk. The 6x4’s tandem drive axles each have a power pack from a Model 3. The air-ride is standard Class 8 with regular-looking frame rails. The battery pack apparently resides beneath the cab. Access to the cab is behind the seat, through a rear-hinged “suicide” door. On one side the window is hinged down its leading edge and opens. The door hinges are hidden and the door handle (from the Model 3) recessed so the sides are super clean. One of the two Teslas features conventional mirrors, the other uses rear-facing cameras. Musk joked that the glass “can withstand a nuclear explosion – or the customer gets a free refund.” Reportedly, major US truckload carrier J.B Hunt has reserved “multiple Tesla Semis,” Walmart says it has ordered 25 and a Canadian supermarket chain says it’s reserving 15. The reveal shows that the Semi’s design team understands the needs of truck operators. If it delivers the operational savings promised, customers will be delighted.Technicians too, because the electric drivetrain is much less complicated than a diesel powertrain. Traditionalist drivers will hate it. But millennials – and that’s where the new drivers are to come from – will love it. T&D

Top: Elon Musk extolls the virtues of Tesla’s Semi heavy-duty electric trucks at the unveil Right: The driver sits in the middle of the sleek cab, flanked by customisable flat-panel displays – the same as on the Tesla Model 3 cars Truck & Driver | 3


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NEWS ROAD TRANSPORT FORUM ANNUAL CONFERENCE

Industry focuses on resilience, adaptability

Minister of Transport Phil Twyford (left), Z Energy chief executive Mike Bennetts (centre) and political commentator Bernard Hickey were among the keynote speakers, delivering thought-provoking messages THE ROAD TRANSPORT FORUM CHOSE THE DUAL themes of resilience and adaptability for this year’s annual industry conference and the event’s key speakers certainly reflected how important those attributes will be to the industry in the years ahead. The first session of the two-day conference was dedicated to understanding the complexity and scale of the rebuild of State Highway 1 and the main trunk rail line through Kaikoura. Todd Moyle of KiwiRail and Tim Crow of the New Zealand Transport Agency, who oversee the project for the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) alliance, outlined the huge challenges presented by the project and the significant achievements that have taken place over the last year. The numbers are hard to comprehend: The total project cost is at $1.3billion – the alliance faced with 1500 damaged road sites along 194 kilometres of highway. One million cubic metres of material was moved from the dozens of slips and unstable hillsides. Nine helicopters over three months dropped 150 million litres of water to sluice loose rocks and material, while some 2.5kms of seawall are being built, using 4500 concrete blocks. On the conference’s second day, economist and political commentator Bernard Hickey gave a fascinating insight into the economic and demographic factors that contributed to the recent election result and how the different priorities of millennial voters will continue to play a big part in elections to come. Greater access to public transport and inner-city housing, a concern about immigration as well as environmental considerations are of increasing importance to this generation and they were key factors in why more young people voted – and voted the way they did: “More rail, more apartments, less students,” is the phrase Hickey used to describe this phenomenon. Sustainability and adaptation to a changing world was the refrain from both Abbie Reynolds of the Sustainable Business Council and Mike Bennetts, chief executive of Z Energy.

Reynolds discussed the significance of the Government’s ambitious net zero emissions target by 2050 and the difficulties NZ will have in reaching that. While agricultural emissions grab the headlines, transport is also a significant contributor, with 17% of NZ’s overall greenhouse gas emissions – so big changes will be on the way for the sector. Better integration between modes, sharing routes, asset sharing and the uptake of new technologies are all key to transport changing its emissions profile. Bennetts walked delegates through Z Energy’s transition to an environmentally and community-conscious organisation with strict sustainability goals and a desire to be part of the climate change solution rather than a contributor to the problem. He talked through the importance of getting in touch with your employees’ values and understanding the context of your business. One of the most thought-provoking aspects of Bennett’s discussion was the importance of challenging your own cognitive dissonance, which occurs when confronted with new evidence that contradicts your own long-held beliefs and is particularly relevant when considering the future of a business and the uptake of new technologies. Letting-go of some of these beliefs is critical to being open to change and keeping your business relevant. The conference’s final speaker was a last-minute addition to the event…and, ironically, he was late due to heavy traffic between Auckland and Hamilton: New Minister of Transport Phil Twyford presented the Government’s vision for an integrated transport system based on four key platforms – economic efficiency, resilience, safety and a reduction in carbon emissions. Twyford wants to create a 21st Century rapid transit system for Auckland, however – as he acknowledged – the problem is how to pay for it. A regional fuel tax, value capture and targeted rates, congestion charging and use of the National Land Transport Fund are all funding options under consideration. A more detailed summary of some of the key speakers will appear in the RTF section of the February issue of NZ Truck & Driver. T&D Truck & Driver | 5


NEWS

Beersies.... AND Barnesy!

Jimmy Barnes doing his exclusive show IT’S BEEN THE KIWI TRUCKING COMPANY BIRTHDAY bash to beat ‘em all – with Aussie rock legend Jimmy Barnes flown in ‘specially to perform at Gleeson & Cox’s 50th anniversary party. Barnes and his eight-piece band played to an invitation-only crowd of around 1200 at the Auckland company’s Aerovista Place headquarters in Wiri – transformed for the night into “Aerovista Arena”….staging “a full-blown rock concert.” Barnes sung for 90 minutes on a stage flanked by another legend – Gleeson & Cox’s anniversary special addition to its 112-strong fleet, a limited edition Kenworth Legend 900, and the company’s previous flagship, a 2014 Kenworth T909 named The General (dedicated to the memory of company co-founder, the late Brian Gleeson). The invited guests – a mix of past and present staff and family, suppliers, customers and other industry figures – had already been entertained by musical and comic duo, The Topp Twins. They’d witnessed a traditional Fijian welcome performed by Gleeson & Cox Fijian drivers and a haka performed by Maori drivers….and they’d dined on offerings from food carts, including Auckland’s iconic White Lady. Gleeson & Cox managing director James Gleeson says the big party came about because “50 years is a big milestone – and the business has never celebrated its history. It’s been really humble. “And I think it really needed to be brought to people’s attention that it’s three

generations in already – and heading for four.” There’s also the fact that in just two years “we doubled the size of the fleet.” And since 2011 it has almost trebled. He told invited guests that “an event like this only happens once every 50 years. Our trucks stand proud on this occasion – shining. A testament to the hard work and polish of our team.” Other speakers included National Road Carriers Association CEO David Aitken and company driver Bevan Tiller. The Gleeson & Cox workshop was transformed from business-as-usual to “Aerovista Arena” between Thursday night and Saturday afternoon, with the company’s project manager Paul Holdom calling on past experience as a road manager to bands like The Kinks and running a concert sound system business, to manage the 50th anniversary event. The setup included 800 square metres of tents and marquees, bars, a VIP platform and furnished bar areas. Gleeson’s office became Barnes’ “green room,” with a golf cart to ferry the singer around. Dozens of Gleeson & Cox trucks – Kenworths on one flank, DAFs on another and Mitsubishi Fusos elsewhere – added to the atmosphere. Pride of place was given to the bulk trailer for the new Legend 900, its alloy bin adorned with graphics covering elements of the company’s history. The company, which was founded by Brian Gleeson and the late Don Cox, is profiled in depth in a New Zealand Truck & Driver Fleet Focus, starting on Page 50. T&D This picture: Part of the crowd at the concert Left: The Topp Twins add to the fun

6 | Truck & Driver


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WE’VE ADDED A SMALL UPGRADE.

To further IVECO’s commitment to the New Zealand trucking industry, now every new Stralis ASL comes with a 1 million kilometre engine warranty. Globally the Stralis has been tested to perform under the toughest conditions (the driveline alone has been tested on the road in excess of 5 million kilometres) and we know this truck is perfect for the everyday challenges of our local linehaul drivers. When it comes to reliability, very few brands come close to the IVECO Stralis. Now the gap just got a little wider.

Phone 0800 FOR IVECO (0800 367 48326). WWW.IVECO.CO.NZ

IVECO - 21 Vogler Drive - Wiri, Auckland Brendan Taylor - 027 403 2036 - Auckland, Northland J. J. Rocher - 027 290 8426 - Auckland, Coromandel

Peter Keys - 027 524 2929 - Waikato, BOP Keith Tuffery - 027 489 1761 - Lower North Island Star Trucks Int. - 03 544 9580 - Nelson

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IVE-195

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31/07/17 10:14 PM


NEWS

Champ is a truckie for life

Eventual winner Simon Reid negotiating the obstacles during his top-four run in the tractor and semi-trailer combo NORTHLAND CAREER TRUCKIE SIMON REID CALLED on 45 years of truck driving experience to win the New Zealand Truck Driving Championship in November. Seeing as he’s 61, the maths don’t quite work – so ask him when he first got behind the wheel of a truck and Reid, who won the TR Group and Master Drive Services-sponsored title and the $6000 first prize in the contest, responds with his own question and a wry laugh: “Do you mean legally?” He points out that back in the early 1970s things were a lot more relaxed – and, thanks to the hours he spent every week out in trucks with the drivers from Kaitaia Transport, “by the time I was 16 I could back a truck and trailer.” All of the intervening years of experience – including lessons learnt running his own trucking company, S.J. Reid Ltd, and competing in numerous national truck driving competitions – helped Reid cope with the pressures of this year’s championship final, held at the Road Transport Forum annual conference venue in Hamilton. Competing against 23 other finalists from around the country, Reid was one of two drivers from the Truck-Trailer Combination section who went through to a final runoff – along with Hawke’s Bay driver Matthew Jackson. They joined the top two competitors in the Tractor-Semi division – Aucklander John Baillie and young Waikato fuel tanker driver David Rogers – in the shootout. The sting in the tail is that the runoff involves the drivers switching from the category they’ve contested until then: Reid reckons he finished the event believing that “one of the two young fullas might have pipped me at the post.” The competitors were kept in suspense for over 24 hours, until the winners were announced at the RTF’s NZ Road Transport Industry Awards dinner –

where Reid was revealed as the one who’d taken out the overall title (his third, following wins in the early 1990s). Jackson, a 36-year-old third-generation truckie who drives a livestock unit for Waipukurau’s Ben Allen Transport, won the truck and trailer division. The 53-year-old Baillie, an owner/driver for Foodstuffs in Auckland, took the tractor-semi-trailer category win for the second year running and Rogers – having put in a standout performance to make it to the top four shootout at the age of 24 – won the EROAD NZ Young Truck Driver of the Year. A driver for Tauranga’s Tranzliquid, Rogers picked up the $1500 winner’s cheque….and praise from RTF chief executive Ken Shirley for him and the other young drivers who did well in the competition – Sam Linton, from Emmerson’s Transport (who won the Class 2 competition) and 21-year-old Andrew Crandon, from Linfox Logistics in Auckland. He won the Class 3 & 4 category. Shirley says that the competition “is an important event to recognise some of the excellent young people in our industry and is designed to help inspire those who may be thinking about getting into road transport.” Judges described the overall competition – in which the 24 company and regional heat winners competed in a range of theory and practical tests over a long day – as “incredibly tight, with only a handful of points separating the top few competitors.” Says competition co-ordinator Mark Ngatuere: “To even have a chance of winning in amongst such a competitive field requires a high level of competence across a range of disciplines. It’s not just driving, it’s a detailed technical knowledge of the machinery and the complex matrix of rules and regulations that govern our industry.” T&D

IVE-195

Left: A happy Reid with the trophy for the TR Group and Master Drivesponsored championship This picture: The drivers in the top-four shootout – (from left) John Baillie, David Rogers, Matthew Jackson and Reid

10:14 PM

Truck & Driver | 9


NEWS

Flagship HQ for IVECO A FLAGSHIP SHOWROOM, WORKSHOP, CORPOR ATE office and parts warehouse for IVECO New Zealand is now under construction in Auckland. Work began on the 11,000-square-metre site on Roscommon Road, Wiri, with a ground-breaking ceremony in October – with the facility scheduled for completion in the third quarter of 2018. IVECO Trucks Australia managing director Michael Jonson says that when the company began looking for a new NZ HQ, “we took the opportunity to review our approach to the market, keeping all options open. “The conclusion was straightforward: NZ customers are very important to us, with IVECO being a successful and growing brand. From there we decided to go all-in and create a flagship retail and service facility.” IVECO NZ general manager Ian Walker says that “ultimately the goal is to continue the momentum on localisation. Our team has worked hard in the last year to really localise our product – from taking more custom units from Australia, to growing the Trakker range specifically for NZ, to updating our standard specs across the board to recognise Kiwi requirements. “This new facility takes our localisation that much further, by providing a state-of-the-art workshop, impressive showroom facilities and corporate offices.” The project will result in over 20 new skilled, high-wage jobs – doubling the staff of its current operation in in Wiri, “which is bursting at the seams.” The new office will easily house 40 employees immediately, with

room for expansion “as the business continues to grow,” the company says. The new HQ’s facilities will include a warehouse that will carry double the current parts inventory and a workshop with eight service bays – one dedicated to IVECO’s Daily vans. Also included will be a truckwash and CoF-compliant brake-testing machines. IVECO NZ says it’s also investing in an entirely new IT infrastructure to support its growing dealer network, customer base and parts warehouse. Says Walker: “When trucks are off the road they can only get working as quickly as the delivery of that final part, regardless of the impressive nature of the service workshop. We recognise that and are integrating an increase in parts holding, quicker parts turnaround and parts KPIs into the relocation project.” IVECO NZ says its sales have better than doubled in the past two years and the new facility is necessary in order to handle the growth required to manage the national IVECO fleet. Also, Walker adds, “it just makes sense to have our own workshop. From processing our vehicles coming off the wharf to providing top-notch service to our Auckland customer base, it’s rewarding to know we hold our destiny in our own hands and look forward to what the future holds for IVECO NZ, its customers and its dealer partners.” The flagship HQ does not signal that there will be other IVECO-owned sites around the country: Dismissing that possibility, Walker says that “we rely on our comprehensive dealer network countrywide for the success of our brand and customers. We’re thrilled with the dealer expansion we’ve had over the last two years and continue to strengthen the network.” T&D

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NEWS

Breaking ground (or concrete!) for IVECO’s new Kiwi HQ are international execs (from left) Michele Lombardi (executive MD IVECO Asia-Pacific), Stefano Pampalone (chief operating officer IVECO Asia-Pacific) and Michael Jonson (MD IVECO Australia), with IVECO NZ GM Ian Walker

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NEWS

Fulton Hogan uses virtual reality training CIVIL ENGINEERING AND RESOURCE COMPANY Fulton Hogan is pioneering the use of virtual reality (VR) to train employees how to deal with potentially dangerous situations, in a safe environment. Using VR, employees are taught how to decontaminate bitumen sprayers and tankers when water has become present – potentially creating a “boilover effect, where bitumen can be sprayed with considerable force over a wide area, putting people’s safety at risk.” Now a new app developed by Fulton Hogan with Corvecto, allows employees to perform the “boil over” decontamination procedure stepby-step using VR – seeing the potentially harmful consequences of any mistakes, while in a safe environment. Fulton Hogan innovation manager Chloe Smith says that VR not only eliminates the risks of training in a “live” situation – it has also improved engagement during training, helping team members to retain crucial knowledge: “Trainees don VR goggles as well as headphones, which makes the simulation highly immersive. “You actually feel like you’re standing on top of the tank, looking down from a height. Along with this the sound effects are so realistic you really do feel like you are physically present in the scenario.” The risk factors are outlined clearly at the start of the training and when mistakes are made, trainees are virtually transported to a room where a screen outlines the errors they made and the steps they should have taken. They’re then able to repeat the task and, with the knowledge of their previous mistakes, improve their performance. Trainees are tracked throughout the process, recording all the decisions that were made, and how long they spent completing each task. This data is added to their training records for future reference. “Our experience with VR for the ‘boil over’ training confirms what we’ve already learnt from our significant investment in virtual driver training – that our team members relate to the gamification of the technical learning and really get into it with an enthusiasm that’s sometimes not there with traditional classroom training,” Smith says. Fulton Hogan, which has over 3000 vehicles, in 2015 purchased two state-of-the-art simulators capable of re-creating a range of NZ driving conditions, including night operation, unexpected road obstructions, wind,

Fulton Hogan’s GM engineering and technical services Alan Peacock demonstrates the VR headset rain, fog and snow. The simulators are transported around the country so that the company’s 3800 NZ employees, as well as school students and community partners, can broaden their onroad skills. The company is now exploring the use of VR technology in other operational areas. T&D

One millionth Pete a giveaway PETERBILT IS GOING TO CELEBRATE the completion of its one millionth truck in spectacular style – by giving it away to a lucky North American fan of the make. The truck – a Model 567 Heritage, fully customised to mark the milestone – is scheduled to roll off the assembly line in January and will be given to “the ultimate Peterbilt fan” at the Mid America Trucking Show (MATS) in March. Kenworth’s sister-company has been running a promotional campaign to find its Peterbilt 12 | Truck & Driver

SuperFan for months in the United States and Canada. Peterbilt Motor Company general manager Kyle Quinn says: “The Peterbilt brand is built on loyalty – it’s the lifeblood of our business. We want to reward that loyalty and the one millionth truck milestone will be the perfect opportunity.” Quinn says that, “since the early days of production in 1939, Peterbilt has been the preferred brand of drivers and owner operators,

built on a reputation of unrivalled quality and customer value.” Fans have been asked to send stories, photos and videos telling of their love for Peterbilt – providing them “with a platform to individually express the role that the brand has played in their lives.” The best of them will be narrowed down to five SuperFan finalists, who will be invited to MATS…where the lucky winner will be handed the keys. T&D


NEWS

Fonterra tanker for Northland driver training TRUCK DRIVER TR AINING IN NORTHLAND HAS been boosted by Fonterra’s longterm loan of a decommissioned milktanker to the region’s leading tertiary education provider NorthTec. NorthTec chief executive Mark Ewen says that the educator is “concentrating on outcomes for our stakeholders and making sure we deliver on those outcomes. “It isn’t always easy for us to have the right resources to deliver for all our stakeholders, but now we have a truck and trailer for the next three years. “It is a very generous investment in us – it’s an investment because we need to be producing more drivers from our region and employing more drivers in our region. It’s an investment in us to deliver fully-trained drivers back to the industry for the next three years and beyond.” Fonterra’s national transport and logistics manager Barry McColl says that the co-operative is “really proud to be able to support initiatives that help develop communities and give back to the regions where we operate. “These are the communities that our farmers and our people are part of, so being able to help out with resources that bring new opportunities is important to us. “Here in Northland there are lots of young people who are seeking employment, and we hope this truck gives them a tool that they can use to gain experience and a springboard into a new career.” Darrin Rhodes, Fonterra’s regional transport training manager for the North Island, says that the company has often discussed the shortage of drivers in the industry, and has decided to work with polytechnics to address the issue – providing trucks to enable driver training. It’s the third truck and trailer tanker unit that Fonterra has loaned to tertiary education institutes. The NorthTec vehicle loan was initiated by Keith McGuire, regional executive for the Road Transport Association New Zealand (RTANZ) and came about through discussions with McColl and NorthTec’s commercial transport department. It will be used for training students doing their Class 4 and Class 5 truck licences with NorthTec. It can also be used for completing driver

competency tests and assessments and other training opportunities like safety inspections, mechanical inspections and truck safety days. The tanker was handed over and blessed at a special ceremony in Whangarei recently. NorthTec kaumātua Hohepa Rudolph welcomed officials from Fonterra, NorthTec, other stakeholders and students and performed the blessing of the new “waka,” naming it Uruao. The name means “tail of the scorpion” and refers to one of the first oceangoing waka, built for the earliest Maori migrations to NZ. Rhodes presented Ewen with a model of the milktanker, in acknowledgment of the new partnership. Ewen presented McColl with a carved wooden paddle. T&D Officiating at the handover and blessing of the milktanker in Whangarei are (from left) NorthTec programme leader, commercial transport Errol Gray, RTANZ regional executive Keith McGuire, NorthTec kaumātua Hohepa Rudolph and chief executive Mark Ewen, Fonterra national transport and logistics manager Barry McColl, Fonterra regional transport training manager North Island, Darrin Rhodes and Fonterra Kauri representative Ernie Gent

Truck & Driver | 13


NEWS A traffic-clogged Neilson Street is a common sight....and the Government urgently needs to come up with a solution after scrapping the present East-West Link

URGENT ATTENTION IS NEEDED FROM THE NEW Labour-led Government to come up with an “enduring” replacement for the scrapped East-West Link motorway project in Auckland. The Road Transport Forum and the Auckland-based National Road Carriers Association are both pushing the Government for fast action. RTF chief executive Ken Shirley says that the Environmental Protection Authority’s draft decision giving approval for the East-West Link “makes it even more urgent for Government to deliver a suitable enduring solution.” And NRC CEO David Aitken says that “the (EPA) decision shows the new road is justified,” despite Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern having cancelled the project – linking State Highway 1 (the Southern Motorway) at Sylvia Park and SH20 (the Southwestern Motorway) at Onehunga….at least in its present form. She did concede that “there are congestion issues that mean we need to re-look at how we respond to the problems that generated the original East-West Link plans.” Those problems revolve around costly congestion on what Aitken says is “the busiest road freight transport route in the country” – servicing the Onehunga, Te Papapa and Southdown industrial zone….home to some of NZ’s largest companies and freight distribution operations, Metroport and the Pikes Point refuse and recycling station. Aitken says that the EPA approval now “needs to be followed up quickly, with a constructive alternative solution for the area’s increasing traffic congestion.” Shirley agrees: “While the road transport industry is disappointed at the Government’s position, we are keen to actively engage to find an enduring solution that will provide the benefits that the approved project would have delivered. “The key thing now is urgency. The freight industry, Auckland commuters 14 | Truck & Driver

and the overall NZ economy cannot afford to wait a protracted period for the Government to come up with another proposal. We need something on the table as soon as possible.” Aitken also says that NRC is “keen to see alternatives as soon as possible” and is “happy to work with all parties to help come up with something appropriate.” Metroport alone handles over 500,000 containers annually and the Pikes Point refuse station is visited by 20,000 heavy commercial vehicles per year – and many more light vehicles and private motorists. Aitken says some sort of bypass is needed between the two motorways, and adds: “We understand the Government is going to encourage more rail freight by installing another rail line as far as the Southdown/Te Papapa inland Metroport. We back that.” But, he says, the incoming freight will still need to be distributed from the Metroport, which will require even more than the 6000 daily truck movements that currently pass through the area. Civil Contractors NZ chief executive Peter Silcock has expressed concern about the impact of the Government halting work on the East-West Link – a $1billion project due to start in just 10 months – in favour of developing a light rail service to the airport….replacing “a large project that is very close to starting, with one that requires years of planning and consenting. “The development of public transport, particularly in Auckland, is a major priority and we agree that an effective and efficient link between the city and airport is a critical part of that.” But he terms the Government decision “disappointing” – because it creates a significant hole in the work programme, especially in Auckland. “Our members need certainty and a consistent level of work that enables them to employ and develop their people and invest in plant and new technologies.” T&D

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NEWS

Inspirational Isuzu handover IT WAS A NEW TRUCK HANDOVER POSSIBLY UNLIKE any other – as Hamilton transport operator Robbie Allen picked up the keys to his latest truck from CAL Isuzu. Guests at the CAL Isuzu function – to deliver a new Isuzu CYJ530 AMT and recognise Allen as a standout customer, with two trucks having each already clocked over one million kilometres – were clearly moved when Allen dispensed with the usual pleasantries of such occasions…. And recounted an inspirational story of success….despite a difficult and troubled early life. The MD of Robbie Linehaul, which runs 10 trucks contracted to Freightways company Parceline Express, managed to get half of his staff in attendance, even as he kept most of his trucks in operation – and thanked his drivers and support staff for their part in his success: “They are the real Robbie Linehaul Ltd,” he reckoned. CAL Isuzu MD Ashok Parbhu and Allen each spoke of their pride in the relationship between their companies – and the fact they’d come from humble beginnings. Parbhu added that in business “it’s not how much money you make, it’s how many friendships you make that counts.” Allen had the gathering captivated with the story of his transformation from a tearaway youth and young adult to a successful businessman – evidence, he said, that “a person on the wrong road can turn his life around.” Robbie Linehaul has been in business for 16 years – starting out with a secondhand Isuzu FSR400 4x2 and CAL Isuzu is delighted that, while the business has bought other makes over the years (his fleet includes Volvos and Hinos), “he’s gone full circle and come back to Isuzu.” Main picture: Robbie Allen (left) and CAL Isuzu sales consultant Andrew Farrell Below: Robbie Linehaul, CAL Isuzu and Isuzu NZ staff were present for an occasion that Allen described as “massive....it blew me away”

16 | Truck & Driver

The six Isuzus in the current fleet range from 2011 and 2012 CYJ460s (the trucks that have each clocked up over one million Ks) to the new CYJ530 delivered at the function. T&D

CAUTION CALL ON RAIL BRIDGES KIWIRAIL IS WARNING HEAVY VEHICLE DRIVERS OF the potential dangers of rail brdge strikes following an increase in incidents in 2017. In 2016, KiwiRail recorded 26 bridge strikes in total. In 2017, to early November, 32 incidents had already been recorded. “Drivers of trucks and heavy vehicles should always check the height of their vehicle or load before passing under a rail bridge,” says KiwiRail group general manager asset management and investment David Gordon. In one of the most recent incidents, in Whangarei, “it was fortunate that the driver….was not seriously injured, and that no other motorists were harmed. “It’s also lucky that the impact on the bridge was not too severe. If the driver had been going faster, or hit the bridge with more force, it could have weakened the structure and/or caused misalignment of the tracks,” says Gordon. “Drivers involved in these incidents can suffer serious injuries, and the public, our staff and our trains are potentially at risk if they travel over a damaged or seriously compromised structure. “Regardless of the level of damage, in an incident such as this the line has to be closed to allow further inspection of the bridge. This disrupts our services and the public.” KiwiRail has been investigating ways to reduce bridge strikes, including working with road controlling authorities on potential road improvements and installing more signage at problematic bridges, as well as working with GPS companies to ensure their systems are up-to-date. Adds Gordon: “The message to motorists is to always obey the road signs, which give plenty of warning of a low bridge. If you think your vehicle or load is above the clearance height, then do not try to pass underneath. Take an alternative route.” Anyone involved in a bridge strike, or who witnesses one, should immediately report it to KiwiRail on 0800 808 400, or to the Police, so the bridge can be inspected and any necessary repairs undertaken. Gordon says that “any driver who collides with a rail bridge could be liable for the cost of repairing the damage, as could their company, so please always watch your height.” T&D


16

Road closure relief for HPMV operators A FRUSTR ATING SHORTCOMING with Auckland’s state highway and motorway HPMV routes has been overcome with the approval of a network of detours now available to high productivity vehicles when road closures shut down the permitted route. The bypass network, confirmed by Auckland Transport in November afterN.B. months of work with the industry, is “a game-changer” for operators regularly using the state highways, says Road Transport Association of New Zealand area executive Keith McGuire. “This means that they can navigate around incidents and issues when they occur, utilising the approved HPMV detours,” he adds. Until now, operators confronted with road closures – some scheduled (usually at night) to allow for maintenance work on the highways,

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but sometimes also after major accidents – have had no alternative permitted routes to allow them to continue their trips. Because of the risk, says McGuire, “most operators have previously elected to drop down to standard loading between 6pm and 6am – or simply do not operate at that time due to the restrictions for HPMV travel, and the possibility of having to park up for hours at a Two-way permitted. time. “This HPMV permit addendum now means that operators can operate at their HPMV capacity on permit 24/7 with a high degree of confidence that they should be able to find a way through Auckland on these detours. “This maximises their opportunity to improve productivity and reduce costs on a more resilient, accessible network.”

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He cites the example of one operator alone that’s able to reduce its truck movements through Auckland by over 700 trips per year, simply by being able to operate at full HPMV capacity, 24/7. An HPMV permit addendum in June secured detours for the section of SH1 from Bombay to Auckland’s CBD, with the new additions providing bypasses for the entire state highway network, including the Waterview tunnel. HPMV vehicles will be able to switch between SH1 and SH20 to avoid major incident closures. The detours cannot be used routinely by HPMV vehicles – only when road closures force them. McGuire acknowledges the work of Auckland Transport and Opus in creating the network of detours. T&D

Fuelling the South TWO NEW BULK FUEL TANKS WILL BE BUILT BY Mobil Oil New Zealand at its Lyttelton fuel terminal – replacing those damaged by a 2014 landslide. Construction of the tanks – one for diesel, the other petrol – began in November at a site adjacent to Mobil’s existing terminal at George Seymour Quay. They’re scheduled for completion in early 2019. Mobil country manager Andrew McNaught says that construction of the new tanks “will restore fuel storage capacity at our Lyttelton operation, which – along with the Lyttelton-Woolston pipeline and Woolston Terminal – is an important part of the fuel supply chain in the South Island. “This project represents a significant investment in New Zealand’s fuel

supply chain and demonstrates our commitment to the local market.” Restoring the Lyttelton fuel terminal’s storage capacity is the latest of several recent major investments by Mobil to enhance its fuel product Page 7 offerings to NZ customers, the company points out. These include the launch of its new Synergy family of fuels and associated service station enhancements, as well as the upgrade of its bulk fuel terminal at Mount Maunganui. It has, it says, invested more than $NZ120million in its NZ operations since 2012 – enhancing an operation that dates back over 120 years and now supplies a nationwide network of more than 170 Mobil-branded service stations and another 50-plus unbranded sites. T&D Truck & Driver | 17

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NEWS

Innovate to beat traffic jams INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES IN TR ANSPORT operating processes can help to relieve New Zealand’s growing traffic congestion problems, says Teletrac Navman’s national integrated solutions manager Daron Brinsdon. Brinsdon highlights the problem facing our major cities with a sample statistic from Auckland Transport – showing that one third of the region’s arterial network was subject to congestion during the morning peak-hour rush in March 2017, with average speeds slowing to 35km/h. As he says: “Congestion isn’t just annoying, it’s expensive; incurring higher fuel and labour costs.” He pinpoints urban consolidation centres (UCCs), night deliveries and load-pooling as areas where the road transport industry can utilise new technology to ease the problem. UCCs, where deliveries are brought, sorted, and then dispatched, “have been around for years, but haven’t always been a success,” says Brinsdon: “They’re for a specific use – to target clusters of independent stores with decentralised deliveries.” They require “intelligently integrated tools such as GPS vehicle tracking systems, freight and task management software, and realtime traffic loading data.” Teletrac Navman, he points out, has a strong focus on integration with leading systems like its iCOS LIVE for transport management and PTV for route optimisation. Brinsdon quotes global management firm McKinsey’s estimate that night deliveries could double the speed of commercial deliveries and cut costs by up to 50% in developed cities. In this scenario, he says, “monitoring technologies such as GPS tracking devices and mounted external cameras are key to keeping drivers and assets safe at night. “Drivers on night shifts should be equipped with electronic logbooks and fatigue monitoring systems to make sure they’re alert and adhering to health and safety regulations.” Noise concerns over night deliveries call into play another technology – quiet electric vehicles, needed in such situations. Load-pooling matches customers who need space with those who have spare capacity – the process allowing for economies of scale, reducing costs and congestion. Says Brinsdon: “There’s different ways to execute loadpooling but the key theme is collaboration, communication and the ability to build a network of businesses to make this work.

Daron Brinsdon “Digitalisation across all processes is needed to communicate information across the network. Standardised, electronic job checklists and forms for drivers, for example, are crucial in feeding back key information quickly.” Load-sharing is already successfully used globally, with the aid of “sophisticated freight management technology.” He concludes that while “there’s no one silver bullet to large-scale issues like traffic congestion….with the help of well-integrated, top-of-the-line technology, businesses can take charge and make smart decisions around obstacles to efficiency.” T&D

New Freight Lines, Streamline exec NEW ZEALAND FREIGHT SPECIALIST Roberto Brady has been appointed to the newlycreated role of group general manager Freight Lines and Streamline Freight. The Group says that Brady brings extensive road freight industry experience to the business, having spent 10 years in senior operational and commercial roles at Toll NZ and most recently filling the role of GM commercial with Kotahi Logistics LP. In his new role, he’s responsible “for driving strategic, commercial, and operational alignment across the Freight Lines linehaul and Streamline freight-forwarding businesses.” Louise Struthers, Group CEO of Freight Lines, Streamline Freight, Strait Shipping and

Bluebridge, says the appointment is “significant” for the Group: “Rob’s arrival in this exciting new role represents a step forward for our road freight businesses. “Maximising alignment between Freight Lines and Streamline to create an even more compelling proposition for our customers is a critical strategic priority and we’re delighted to have someone with Rob’s expertise to drive this. His operational and commercial leadership will be invaluable as we evolve the freight businesses across our extensive national network.” Brady’s responsibilities cover the Group’s NZwide network. He’s based at Freight Lines’ Wiri operation. T&D

Roberto Brady

18 | Truck & Driver

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NEWS

A Hino 300’s traction is taken to the limit on the Hampton Downs skid pad

Hinos on track HINO HAS SPENT A DAY PUTTING ITS CURRENT range of trucks to the test at the Waikato’s Hampton Downs motor racing circuit. But the Hino Track Day wasn’t at all about high speed, nor competition. It was all about allowing trucking industry invitees to get a hands-on experience of the entire Hino model range – getting a feel for the latest technology in a safe, controlled environment. Hino GM Michael Doeg says that “with so many models available, Hino trucks are used everywhere and for everything in New Zealand” – the track day (now in its third year) is “the perfect way for our visitors to try the full range, and find out for themselves first-hand the benefits and world-leading features they have.” Guests also had the opportunity to test Hino’s Vehicle Stability Control on a skid pan, try out Hino’s hybrid and new Euro 5 technology – and take

part in a reversing challenge, with the winners claiming hot laps of the Hampton Downs track in a V8. Says Doeg: “The technology we develop for our trucks is constantly evolving, and not all of our customers are aware of the new additions. Features like our Vehicle Stability Control and reversing cameras mean that Hino vehicles are offering international-level safety packages, alongside first-class performance and fuel efficiency.” Guests also got the first look at Hino’s just-launched Wide Cab 500 Series models. Adds Doeg: “This event gives us a great opportunity to get to know our customers better and learn from their feedback in person. Hino’s proud to be part of NZ’s trucking community for more than 50 years, and that relationship is what fuels our pursuit to always be the best partner we can for our customers.” T&D

Next step in Kawerau inland port plan A PLANNED INLAND PORT AT Kawerau, designed to transport shipping containers to the Port of Tauranga by rail rather than on trucks, has taken another step forward – with international port logistics company ISO Ltd selected as its preferred operator. The Kawerau Container Terminal has been identified as a significant growth opportunity for the town and the wider region. And its feasibility is supported through the Toi Moana Bay of Plenty Economic Action Plan, which identifies and supports a range of short to mid-term opportunities (up to 10 years) that could increase investment, employment and incomes in the region. The project is being facilitated by the Bay of Connections locally, working alongside central government – with the support of local councils and others who backed a research project into the viability of the proposed terminal.

Bay of Connections portfolio manager Cheryl growing businesses and increasing incomes and Lewis says that research “found that jobs. the inland port would improve “It also showed social benefits, supply chain efficiency and that environmental benefits with the reduction 88% of containers would be of CO2 emissions by as much as five to six thousand tonnes per annum, improved better off on rail when travelling road safety and a decrease in highway to the Port of Tauranga. maintenance costs, with 80 fewer trucks “For the most likely case, a day on State Highway 2. using the container terminal “The benefits to the wider and train from Kawerau region are undeniable, and could save $100-$150 per it’s a great example of the container. region working together, “The economic along with government, to impact would equate to help progress a regional an estimated saving of economic development between $1.85million initiative. It’s extremely and $2.77million per exciting to see the year for various industry project progress to the sectors – savings which Cheryl Lewis next stage.” T&D would likely be redirected to Truck & Driver | 21


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Mack 10

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Rhys Jones (above) loves his new Mack....and loves driving through the spectacular Central Otago countryside. But he admits to being a little concerned that our test just happens to coincide with the long HPMV unit’s first time up the Crown Range Zig-Zag (right). It’s a great test of the Super-Liner’s capabilities

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RIVER RHYS JONES SPENT A FEW HOURS LAST night worrying about this test – understandably, given the newness of this Mack Super-Liner. The 50MAX-rated truck and trailer tipper combination, operated by Fulton Hogan Central out of Cromwell in Central Otago, has been in service less than a week – so he’s not yet fully up to speed with its ins and outs. But, it turns out, that’s not his concern – he’s been fully briefed by the driver trainer from Mack importer Motor Truck Distributors, and he’s already finding the Mack a delight to drive. Instead, what has been exercising his mind is the challenge of the route for today’s first load – clean sand, destined for the bunkers in a private golf course being built on a property adjoining the Crown Range road, at the top of the Zig-Zag, where the road rises steeply from the bottom of the hill on the Queenstown side. It is a formidable bit of road, the Zig-Zag – gaining over 200 metres in elevation in little more than a couple of kilometres, and clawing its way to the top of the escarpment through a serious of seven hairpin bends that rival those in the French Alps traversed each year by the Tour de France. “I’ve had issues with that road,” Jones mutters, as

he guides the new combination through the Kawarau Gorge en route to the Crown Range turnoff. Oh yeah, he’s been up there loaded before...but that was with a standard 44-tonnes all-up weight and a standardlength unit, not the 50t and 22 metres of the 8x4 Mack and its five-axle Transport Trailers partner. And how about tossing another variable into the mix – namely the tourists who see themselves intrepid enough to take on the Crown Range…but, when faced with a heavy truck struggling to make the grade and taking up all the road, often react in unexpected ways? That’s one of the reasons this is the day’s first load – the visitors to the region are nothing if not predictable in their timetables, and he figures we’ll be up and down before the mid-morning “rush” arrives from Wanaka. The locals who constitute the majority of the traffic at this time of day have learnt to keep a sharp eye out on the switchbacks for oncoming vehicles, so they’re less of a concern. Rhys picked up the sand in Dunedin yesterday and took it through to FH’s Cromwell depot, where the truck stayed overnight. The run through the Gorge takes not much over half an hour, the Super-Liner easily keeping pace with the moderate traffic. Even Truck & Driver | 25

12:40 PM


This page: Lake Dunstan looks its best as the 50MAX combination rolls towards Queenstown with a load of aggregate Opposite page: Another load of sand is delivered to its Crown Range destination

the grind up from the bend at the Roaring Meg is handled with aplomb. The Super-Liner’s 16-litre MP10 engine will soon be rated to its highest optional outputs of 685 horsepower (510 kilowatts) and 2300 pound foot (3120 Newton metres) of torque. But the necessary software for New Zealand importer Motor Truck Distributors to make that rating upgrade didn’t come with the truck, so it’s gone on the road with the MP10 at 600hp (441kW) and 2065 lb ft (2799Nm) for the first few weeks of its life. The impressive thing is that, even at 85hp less than what will be its norm, it’s unfussed in handling everything the road and traffic throws at it. First impressions are overwhelmingly positive. Hey, as a passenger, how could you complain when you get a premium Isri air seat – just one step down from the Isri Big Boy model enjoyed by the driver? Especially noteworthy is the quietness of the engine...and of the truck overall, for that matter, with only a rustle of air around the mounting brackets for the West Coaster exterior mirrors intruding at highway speeds. It certainly doesn’t call for raised conversation volumes. The mirror mounts are a bit of a nod to tradition – in contrast to the sleek fairings employed by most new trucks these days. The mounts are also in contrast to the Super-Liner’s interior, which ticks a heap of boxes as a good place to spend a working day. Accessibility to minor controls is at the top of that list. The fascia return is one of the more sharply-angled ones on the market, meaning it puts all the important switches – a combination of rocker and blade styles, logically grouped and clearly labelled – no more than a hand span or so away from 26 | Truck & Driver

the steering wheel. Providing the room for all this has meant a high top to the dash, which does tend to obscure the view of the bonnet and consequently makes it a bit more difficult to sense where the front of the truck is in tight situations. The main instrument panel borders on information overkill, with the two main analogue gauges flanked by 10 smaller ones, and a fan of three LCD displays above that which is able to not only duplicate the data from the conventional readouts but can probably answer any technical question a driver might ask. In contrast to the user-friendliness of the minor switchgear is the control panel for the Mack’s mDrive AMT, mounted at the top of the dash and a good way to the left – certainly not optimal if you regularly want to be shifting the ratios manually. Which makes it a good thing that a driver will almost never need to override the electronic decisions of the system, so uncannily does it pick the correct gear at just the right time – the shift mechatronics and automatic clutch working even quicker than a human finger can twitch. We’ve seen the engine/transmission pairing working brilliantly on the run from Cromwell, but its starring role comes in the slog up the Zig-Zag. In little more than five minutes, Rhys’ forebodings disappear as the combination growls steadily on and up. On the flatter sections the 12-speed mDrive – left in its fully automated mode – holds 7th gear, with the MP10 spinning sweetly at the top of its torque band at 1550rpm and the speedo showing around 30km/h. Steeper sections and the bends see the revs drop to 1050rpm before a crisp engagement of 6th brings


A driver will almost never need to override the electronic decisions of the system, so uncannily does it pick the correct gear at just the right time

them back to the very middle of the torque plateau at 1250rpm. It’s a masterclass in how to do it. The MP10’s torque is at all times more than equal to the task of humping the 50t up the slope, and the speed and precision of the automated shifting system means that the correct ratio is always selected. As we hit the gentler section at the top of the ZigZag there’s the impression that, if it could talk, the Super-Liner would be asking: “Is that all? Was that what had you worried? Hah! No sweat.” The feat is seen as even more impressive when Rhys reveals that he’s elected not to choose the AMT power mode, which shifts down relatively early and hangs on in gears until 1800rpm before upshifting: “I thought I’d see if it handled the job in the standard setting, and it did it no trouble, eh? “And I could have put it into Manual, but I can’t push the buttons as quickly as the box does it anyway – and it makes the call at the very places I would, so why bother overriding it? The truck knows what it’s doing, the system is sensing the drivetrain torque and loading and responding instantly.” We agree that in the classic situation of a sudden change in slope that the AMT cannot predict but the driver can see, it could get caught out. But as Rhys points out, a quick tap on the big minus button on the shift panel will force the required ratio drop, with the system then reverting to Auto after a few seconds. So, from a performance point of view, the Mack has absolutely smashed one of the country’s benchmark climbs. Given that the engine uprate (carried out soon after our test) will add 14% more power and 11% more torque, you realise that should Fulton Hogan ever

choose to run the unit on a permit weight higher than 50MAX, it’ll handle it with ease. When you look at it, it’s probably little wonder. Despite their Mack designations, the MP10 and mDrive are closely related to parent company Volvo’s D16 and I-Shift. However, they’re more siblings than twins. For example, while the D16 uses variable-geometry turbocharging, the MP10 has a simpler wastegate system. Compared with its nearest equivalent in the D16 range, the D16K650, the 685 Mack has a torque band shifted marginally up the rev range – though peak torque is the same. With a transmission recalibrated to match the differences in power delivery, you end up with a slightly different package in terms of general performance – one that’s every bit as good as the benchmark D16/I-Shift combos. Arguably better even, on the basis of our experience with this Fulton Hogan unit. Where the mDrive really hits the mark on the slope is its willingness – even in economy mode – to make the call on a downshift earlier than the majority of AMTs. Sure, with all the grunt at its disposal, it could lug to below 1000rpm no trouble...but then it might sometimes have to take a two or even three-ratio bite to compensate for the lost momentum. As it is, the comparatively early response means it picks one ratio at a time, quickly and crisply, with minimal loss of momentum on each change and no manic increase in revs. A good deal of the credit for this cleverness lies with an addition to the sensors for driveshaft torque and throttle position that are common to all AMTs. To these the mDrive adds an incline sensor that responds Truck & Driver | 27


All pictures: Mack’s 16-litre MP10 engine, derived from the Volvo D16 but with some unique features, combines beautifully with the 12-speed Mack mDrive AMT. As tested, the MP10 is rated at 600hp and 2065 lb ft....but is awaiting a software uprate (now carried out) to 2300 lb ft and the badged 685hp appropriately to climbs like the Zig-Zag. Rhys’ other major concern about the Zig-Zag related to the length of the new combination: Would it get around the hairpins, or would it end up tying itself in knots? As with the engine performance, this turns out to be not a worry. The left-hand bends shape up as the potential problems, but by taking the widest possible first bite and with the help of the serenely-tracking Transport Trailers five-axle trailer, we end up with around half a metre clearance on the inside of every bend. In fact, the most challenging element of this first cycle is the driveway of the property where the sand 28 | Truck & Driver

is to be delivered. On the opposite side of the road just before the entrance someone has put a stockpile of roading gravel...just where the rig needs to swing for a direct entry. With that approach denied him, Rhys has to go past and perform a 270-degree clockwise manoeuvre – a super U-turn if you will. He accomplishes it skilfully, with only a couple of intermediate backups. With just 10 months service with Fulton Hogan, he admits to being a bit embarrassed at scoring the flash new drive. What’s more, even as a comparative youngster in the industry (he’s 35) this isn’t his first new or near-new truck, he adds: “I’ve been put in some great trucks over the years, which makes me


very grateful.” That said, his previous mount with FH – an older Isuzu with more than 700,000km up – was much more modest, but he enjoyed that as well: “It was the truck I was given to drive, and I kept it neat and clean and worked it as well as I could.” His truck driving career path was sparked in his early teens by being taken for a ride by his stepfather, who drove for McDowalls. However, when he left school, he initially tried his hand in the building trade, but found it boring: “Going to the same workplace every day for six or seven weeks at a time wasn’t for me, so I thought I’d give truck driving a go.” He started off as a storeman with McDowalls, then began driving around-town units. His memory of his first day in a truck, a Leyland, is very clear: “I drove out of the yard and the accelerator jammed on, leaving me flying down the road thinking that my driving career could be a very short and very spectacular one! However, I’d had occasional experiences of a similar nature with tractors on the

farm I grew up on, so I was able to make the correct call – pop it into neutral and switch off the ignition. “As I progressed through the licences I kept being given opportunities, until eventually I ended up in a relatively new Western Star. It was a lovely truck.” It helped too that he was given “heaps of advice and help from the more experienced drivers.” After a spell helping his father on his Southland farm, he returned to driving – this time with Dynes Transport in Dunedin, handling a full range of bulk dairy products. He loved the variety of the job. He also loved the Kenworth K108, which was his main mount – commenting that it might have been uncomfortable but really looked the part. There followed a long and enjoyable spell with JPM Holdings, doing linehaul in a Volvo FH Globetrotter, carting containers in Christchurch, then – after the 2011 earthquake – moving into the contracting division: “I swapped a Volvo road model for an offroad one.” He got the chance there to learn different skills on

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Balanced steering and a faithfully-tracking trailer allow the combination to negotiate the tightest of winding mountain roads....like this Zig-Zag section of the Crown Range road excavators – and that led to a shift to operating a 35t digger for a company doing remediation work to stabilise quake-damaged land: It was work, he says, that gave you “a great sense of achievement.” When they moved to Central Otago at his wife’s urging, he got a job operating paving machines for an asphalt company. He reckons: “People often have a love-hate relationship with asphalt. I loved it… but I’d see the trucks delivering the hotmix, and knew that was where I’d rather be.” When a Fulton Hogan driver told him the company had an opening, he got in touch…and landed his current job. It was, he reckons, “one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I didn’t mind linehaul, but it could become somewhat boring. You’re on the same bit of road at the same time every night, passing the same people, hearing the same chatter on the radio. “What I’m doing now is totally different. It’s full of variety, which makes it great.” He waves to the vista ahead as we retrace our route down the Zig-Zag: “And even when you get jobs where you do the same run six times a day for a week or two, there’s always this. There’s so much to look at, and it’s changing all the time. How could you be unhappy working every day in an environment like this? “OK, the road through the Kawarau Gorge can be one of the busiest in the country in summer, when it’s clogged with tourists. And they can sometimes drive you mad when they suddenly stop to take a photograph...but then you realise how mindblowing it must be for people from other countries to see these spectacular views, and you learn to make allowances. “I’ve always had a good run with the people and companies I’ve worked with. You hear these horror stories from guys about the way they’re treated, but I

count myself very lucky with the bosses I’ve had.” We meet up with the latest of them when we pull into the sprawling Parkburn quarry, on the shores of Lake Dunstan, to the north of Cromwell. Trevor Jenkins oversees FH’s 18-strong regional fleet, of which four – two Cats, the test Mack and a sister model set up as a transporter tractor unit – are now leased through TR, a system he reckons works well. The company was locked into what brand or model it wanted when choosing the test truck, he says: “We had a clear spec for the jobs it’d be doing, and we shopped around through a range of options, with the Super-Liner coming out the best.” Similarly, Transport Trailers came up with the best proposal for the design and construction of the trailer and the associated tipper bins, fashioned in alloy because the product out of Parkburn is all high-quality gravel, with none of the rock that might have called for Hardox or other steel construction. The trailer rides on SAF air suspension and Intradisc axles, and is fitted with Wabco EBS/ABS. Like the truck it runs on Bridgestone tyres. This model of the Super-Liner launched in Australia nearly three years ago and was enthusiastically welcomed for B-triple and long-distance stock applications, but sales were initially modest this side of the Tasman. Now however, the availability of 8x4 versions in conjunction with the 685hp engine has struck a chord with Kiwi operators. The Fulton Hogan unit is only one of several that have been delivered in the past few months, while distributor MTD reports that enquiry on the model is strong and growing, with segments like logging being especially interested in the unique mix of high power, eight wheeler and bonneted. Truck & Driver | 33

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Clockwise, from above: Handsome Super-Liner sports the vertical intake and exhaust systems of a classic conventional model; detail touches like drawbar steps and well-guarded access ladders are features of the Transport Trailers work; cab access is compromised by offset steps and limited grabhandles; even the AdBlue tank is smartly presented

Sitting as it does on the Mack heavyweight scale between the Titan and the Trident, the Super-Liner is a bit of a Goldilocks model...just right for a range of applications. In its turn, the test truck is fitted with the more standard or midrange options available for the model, in the form of Mack FXL 14.6 steel suspension front axles (heavier-rated FXL 16.5s are also available) and midrange Meritor RT46-160 rear axles combined with Mack’s AP460 air suspension. The PowerLeash engine brake that’s unique to Mack is a superficially simple, two-stage system that in fact hides a few subtleties in an operational protocol that’s different from many others. For instance, it has a setting in which it doesn’t kick in until the service brake is lightly applied – useful for urban/suburban applications where you don’t want it constantly coming in and out as the accelerator is varied to match traffic flow, yet where extra braking comes in handy at traffic signals and approaching roundabouts. Another setting, chosen via the AMT control pad, sees the transmission cooperate to ensure maximum retardation. In this mode, light application of the service brake results in standard engine brake response, but a heavier push on the pedal triggers a downshift through as many ratios as will bring the engine speed up to the 2100-2200rpm where the 34 | Truck & Driver

PowerLeash is at its strongest. NZ Truck & Driver tester Trevor Woolston is at the wheel as the Mack heads out of Parkburn with its next load – 14mm aggregate destined to be cover for underground fuel tanks in a commercial development at Frankton, adjoining Queenstown Airport. Like Rhys Jones, he finds the performance and ride qualities of the fully-loaded combination through the sometimes demanding Kawarau Gorge to be outstanding. See his full impressions in the Goodyear Trevor Test, on Page 36. Later on, reflecting on the Super-Liner, Rhys reckons there’s very little he could think of that he’d prefer to be different: “I haven’t found anything yet I don’t like about it. The driving position is brilliant, all the ergonomics are great, with everything easy to reach. The automated gearbox is so easy to use. The vision out is brilliant – even though the screen is a two-part one, the central pillar doesn’t interfere. “Looked at overall, it has everything I need...plus quite a few other very handy things that I never even realised I needed!” He reckons the Super-Liner offers the best of two worlds: “Every driver wants the classic looks of a big bonneted model. But though we mightn’t admit it, we secretly want comfort and quietness as well...and it’s got them too.” T&D


I

T’S NO SECRET THAT IN AN EARLIER LIFE I spent a fair bit of time looking up the back end of a Bulldog – and, while the memories are like yesterday, the timeframe is in fact 33 years ago. Today as I climb up into Rhys Jones’ new Mack Super-Liner the only recognisable feature is the back end of the Bulldog, still there on the bonnet. There are certainly no regrets that the memories of the old R Model are lost in time, as the new offerings from Mack are certainly up there with the best of them and today down here in beautiful Central Otago the prospect of getting behind the wheel with 50t all-up and 600hp on tap is certainly an exciting one. I get my chance behind the wheel as we pull out of Fulton Hogan’s Parkburn Quarry in Cromwell, bound for Queenstown with a load of pea metal for a new fuel stop development. It’s not going to be a testing climb like this

morning’s earlier job over the Crown Range Road but it certainly throws up the prospect of narrow roads inhabited by inexperienced tourist drivers, so extra care and attention is required. Climbing up into the cab raises my biggest gripe of the day – there’s no forward hand hold as you mount the steps on the driver’s side. This, coupled with the bottom step putting you under the door due to its forward location between the two steer axles and a restricted door opening, leaves a bit to be desired. In today’s world of health and safety rules and regulations, three points of contact are required at all times when climbing off the ground and certainly the climb up into the Super-Liner cab constitutes this. But a well-placed handle on the front of the door opening that sits back against the closed door would work fine – and I’m sure Mack will be looking at this, to avoid ongoing issues in this area. Once up in the cab it’s the familiar Mack

feel with a great Isri Big Boy air seat (with the Mack logo embossed on its cloth trim), complemented on the passenger side with a second Isri premium seat. Both offer a full range of forward and aft adjustments as well as full side and upper and lower lumbar adjustments. In front is a well-laid-out wraparound dash, putting all controls within easy reach of the driver. My only criticism is the placement of the AMT selection panel over to the far left of the dash. If you need to use the manual gear selection or are involved in tight backing manoeuvres, you need to move your sight line well away from straight ahead. To put this into context however the need for manual gear selection with this transmission is very rare – in fact, I haven’t needed to use it in any of the previous tests I’ve done recently on new Macks. It is interesting to note that a recent news article on the launch of the new Mack Anthem in the USA says that following operator feedback the shift pad has been

The Mack heads out of the Parkburn quarry near Cromwell

0800 4 CARTERS 36 | Truck & Driver

0800 4 227 8377

www.carterstyres.co.nz


moved closer to the fingertips. Driving position is easy to adjust with excellent legroom out front due to there being no clutch pedal, generous forward and aft adjustments on the seat, and tilt and telescopic adjustment on the steering column. It’s an easy run alongside Lake Dunstan as we leave the quarry and the truck quickly runs up through the gears with the weight not even noticeable. The power delivery stretches from 1000rpm through to 1700rpm, which is all you need to keep this engine ticking over nicely. The mDrive produces nice, clean shifts at low revs and quickly moves up to 12th gear and 90km/h road speed. The steering is good and positive and the ride is great, however the roads on this first part of the run are some of the best in NZ so we don’t really get to experience too many bumps. We are soon into the Kawarau Gorge, where suddenly things change as the road narrows up and the twists and turns start…as well as a few more bumps. Suddenly you become aware of that big bonnet out there and the lack of vision of the front left-hand corner. From my seat position, it’s not just the bonnet but also the top of the centre section of the dash that adds to the obstructed view. However, it doesn’t take long to get a good feel for the truck’s position on the road, and Rhys tells us he uses the Bulldog as a guide to his distance from the roadside. While the heated and power-adjustable traditional West Coaster mirrors work fine and give a good view down the side, the small, low-mounted convex spotter

mirror is partially hidden by the top of the passenger door on the left-hand side. Compared with the mirror offerings on the parent company Volvo models, the Mack mirrors are a bit agricultural. Once into the Gorge it’s a steady winding road with a few climbs and descents but nothing that puts the engine/transmission combination under any pressure. It’s easy to drive, letting the transmission keep the revs well within the economic fuel consumption range. There are a couple of reasonable uphill pulls, the most significant the climb up from the Roaring Meg bridge and as you get near the top of this there’s a slow vehicle lane to let following traffic pass. I slip into this and have to come to a complete stop to allow the following queue to pass. Even from a complete stop, on a slight uphill, the truck quickly picks up gears and easily gets back up to its road speed. With all the speed-restricted corners through the Gorge I’m able to control the truck’s speed easily with the PowerLeash engine brake and very few applications of the service brakes. The PowerLeash can deliver 570hp of braking power and it’s certainly noticeable when you use it to steady the truck’s speed for the corners. Apart from a bit of roadworks as we clear the Kawarau Gorge and get into vineyard country, it’s a clear run into Queenstown and our dropoff point, just off the main road at one of the numerous roundabouts leading into Frankton. It’s been a great drive and the Super-Liner makes life easy. There’s certainly no regrets in getting back behind the Bulldog and it’s great to see the brand still delivering such great products into the New Zealand market. T&D

• SPECIFICATIONS • MACK SUPER-LINER 8x4

Engine: Mack MP10 Capacity: 16.1 litres Maximum power: 441kW (600hp) @ 1550-1800rpm – as tested Maximum torque: 2799Nm (2065 lb ft) @ 1000-1550rpm – as tested Engine revs: 1420rpm @ 90km/h in 12th gear Fuel capacity: 500 litres Transmission: 12-speed TmD12AO23 Mack mDrive automated manual Ratios: 1st – 11.73 2nd – 9.21 3rd – 7.09 4th – 5.57 5th – 4.35 6th – 3.41 7th – 2.70 8th – 2.12 9th – 1.63 10th – 1.28 11th – 1.00 12th – 0.78 Front axles: FXL 14.6, rated at 6600kg each Rear axles: RT46-160GP, combined rating of 20,900kg Auxiliary brake: Mack Powerleash+ decompression engine retarder Front suspension: Parabolic springs, shock absorbers Rear suspension: Mack AP460 air suspension, shock absorbers GVW: 26,000kg GCM: 70,000kg

0800 4 CARTERS

0800 4 227 8377

www.carterstyres.co.nz Truck & Driver | 37


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THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

There’s lots of hard work ahead for new Transport Minister Phil Twyford (left) and Associate Ministers Shane Jones and Julie Anne Genter

New Government needs to hit the ground running

M by Ken Shirley Chief Executive Road Transport Forum NZ

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et

MP REMINDS ME OF THE description that rugby commentators give at the end of a game when the score’s tied – that “it feels a bit like kissing your sister.” As a voter you sit down on election night, having put up with what (this year at least) seemed to be a campaign that went on forever, you watch the results come in…..and you end up going to bed none-the-wiser. Even weeks later you found yourself still waiting….as Winston played the field in some bizarre love-triangle. And it really sunk in how disenfranchising the whole system has become. Most concerning, I think, to the average voter worried about the direction of the country or their children’s future, is that what is meant to be a democratic process feels extremely undemocratic indeed. A few party leaders and their apparatchiks retreat to smoke-filled rooms to decide what we, the voter, are constantly told is actually our right to decide. Despite this feeling of uneasiness about the electoral system there was a part of me that did enjoy the nearly four weeks we waited for Winston to make his decision: It was

actually quite refreshing to have a period free from politics. It was also a stark illustration of the strength of our state’s core institutions and the fact that the country is not heavily dependent on Government at all – strange as that may sound, coming from an ex-MP! Commerce and business thrive in spite of government, not because of it. Now that we finally do have a Government though, the onus is on it to continue to make major investments in transport infrastructure. There is a lot of hard work ahead for new Minister of Transport Phil Twyford and Asociate Ministers Shane Jones (who is also Minister for Infrastructure) and Julie Anne Genter – for, despite significant investment in recent years, New Zealand still faces a major infrastructure deficit that we desperately need to get on top of. The Roads of National Significance projects were a good start and it is concerning to hear from the new Government that many projects planned as RONS may not continue. It is however encouraging that local government may get more assistance to improve regional roads. The election campaign also illustrated that the time for Truck & Driver | 39


THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

The new Government must tackle the rising road toll with some urgency — by properly analysing the underlying causes of serious road accidents and continuing to invest in safer roads...and addressing driver behaviour, distractions, speed and the use of alcohol and drugs as key causes of crashes

road pricing has arrived. All parties represented at the Election 2017 Transport Summit agreed that the use of demand management through road pricing can have an impact on traffic congestion in Auckland. The parties also suggested that they were keen to implement road pricing mechanisms if elected. We know that a high proportion of peak-time traffic in Auckland is single-occupancy cars and it has been proven overseas that road pricing can have an impact on this. As long as the system devised is fair across all road users then there is broad support for its introduction. The Road Transport Forum and our associations are committed to the principle that the National Land Transport Fund must remain a ringfenced, user-pays fund that is reinvested back into roading. Indications through the Confidence and Supply Agreement between the Greens and Labour that the new Government will play around with this model and use the fund to subsidise other transport modes shows a level of contempt for road users and our industry. If indeed they follow through on this plan it will face stiff resistance from the industry. The new Government must also seek to reinvigorate the Driver Licensing Review. The Review has the potential to introduce a more fit-for-purpose licence system that would remove a large part of the costs and compliance burden of the current scheme. Transport operators have long considered the present system as a major impediment to attracting new drivers. Currently 40 | Truck & Driver

it takes too long and is far too expensive to gain a licence. The commitment expressed in the Labour-NZ First Coalition Agreement to offer free driving lessons to secondary school students is a welcome acknowledgement of the growing numbers of young people who are not learning to drive. It is a really big issue for our industry, as a major impediment for school leavers looking to get into road transport is that many of them don’t even have a Class One driver’s licence. Finally, the upward trend to the road toll over the last few years is of deep concern to the road transport industry. The new Government must tackle this issue with some urgency – by really analysing the underlying causes of serious road accidents and continuing to invest in the improvement of safety infrastructure such as safety barriers, road straightening and levelcrossing signals. Driver behaviour must also be addressed and distractions, speed and the use of alcohol and drugs targeted as the key causes in many serious accidents. Outside of the transport sphere there will be considerable pressure on the new Government to make gains on a number of social fronts as well as in environmental areas such as water quality and climate change. Urban planning and housing will obviously be a focus – with Auckland’s booming population growth and the expanding economy as well. It will be fascinating to see how the new policy settings address the many challenges. T&D


r e t s a m d a o R t a The team wis h our customer would likertyo C hristmas and a Mer nd Prosperous a Happy eaw Year N

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Colin Patchell 027 241 1701 colin@roadmaster.co.nz Mark Walley 027 703 9278 markw@roadmaster.co.nz

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THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

Let’s make levelcrossings safer

TrackSAFE’s research is designed to inform better design of infrastructure and safety systems around level crossings

N

ATIONAL RAIL- SAFETY CHARITY TRACKSAFE New Zealand has launched a research project to help improve safety for heavy vehicle drivers around railway level crossings. The project was launched at the Road Transport Forum Conference in November and is based on heavy vehicle operators’ feedback on their experiences around level crossings. TrackSAFE Foundation NZ manager Megan Drayton says the research is an exciting undertaking: “This will be the first study in NZ that specifically takes into account the views of heavy vehicle operators. We really hope the insights we get will lead to improvements in safety for truck drivers as they drive on and around level crossings.” Market research company UMR has been commissioned to undertake

the study in what is a collaborative project with the NZ Transport Agency, KiwiRail and the Road Transport Forum. While collisions between trains and heavy vehicles are relatively infrequent in comparison with vehicle-to-vehicle accidents on the road, these types of collisions have the potential for considerable loss of life and serious trauma. Since 2010, there have been more than 23 collisions between trains and heavy vehicles. It was only in October that the driver of a Waste Management truck was killed in a collision with a train in the Bay of Plenty. “These incidents are devastating for everyone affected,” says Drayton: “Each and every collision has a traumatic impact – not just on the Truck & Driver | 43


THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

This bus illustrates the problem of stacking that occurs at some level crossings

victims and their friends and families, but also the wider community and the rail staff involved.” She says there have also been more than 300 reported near misses and the frequency of those is increasing. As at September 2017, train drivers reported 33 near misses with heavy vehicles across NZ – up from 24 the year before, a 38% rise. The trend may in part be due to better reporting, as well as increases in the frequency of train services and an increase in the number of kilometres travelled by trucks. Canterbury, Auckland and Waikato have recorded the greatest number of near misses between trucks and trains. Drayton notes that there are a number of environmental factors at level crossings that can increase the risk for heavy vehicle operators: “According to the Transport Accident Investigation Commission, around 19%, or 264, of our level crossings have short stacking distances. This means a long vehicle will not be able to completely clear the level crossing when it’s stopped at an adjacent road intersection. “There are also some level crossings where the profile or the change of rate in gradient may not be compatible with vehicles that have low, albeit legal, ground clearance.” In order to provide better information about the hazards presented by level crossings TrackSAFE NZ is looking for 1000 heavy vehicle drivers to sign up to participate in an online survey. All participants go into a prize draw for one of five $200 fuel vouchers. Information that TrackSAFE NZ says it would like to get from drivers includes how they perceive and regard the risk around railway level crossings and how those perceptions manifest in their behaviour around a crossing. Some questions, for example, may relate to how heavy vehicle drivers behave when approaching level crossings protected by 44 | Truck & Driver

Give Way or Stop Signs….or may investigate the degree to which heavy vehicle drivers understand train stopping distances. The organisation says it’s not intended to point the finger at drivers, but rather to inform the development of a new safety campaign and provide valuable information in the progression of level crossing upgrades and trials of new technologies. None of this work exists in isolation: KiwiRail currently has a number of engineering trials under way to help make level crossings safer. A system is being trialled that sees crossing alarms activated early if an over-length vehicle approaches a level crossing at the same time as a train. The system can measure the length of the vehicle and also detects the oncoming train. When they’re detected at the same time, alarms are activated to alert the driver of the danger. This short-stacking system is one of a number of safety improvement trials KiwiRail is working on with the Safe Roads Alliance at crossings throughout the country. The Alliance comprises NZTA and infrastructure consultancies Beca, BBO and Northern Civil Consulting. It’s been established to deliver a programme of road and roadside safety improvements to the state highway network for the last six years. Another key project KiwiRail is working on is a trial in the lower North Island of solar-powered signs that illuminate when a vehicle approaches a level crossing, encouraging drivers to stop and look for trains. Trial results have so far been positive and the sign is now proceeding through an approval process with NZTA. More information about the research is available by contacting Megan Drayton at TrackSAFE – (04) 498 2010 or tracksafe@tracksafe.co.nz or by registering directly with Karen Connell at UMR – (04) 473 1066 or karen.connell@umr.co.nz T&D


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THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

Making qualifications relevant to workplace skills

Fine-tuning of industry qualifications is designed to achieve greater recognition of practical competence and on-the-job training

W

ORK TO BETTER RECOGNISE THE SKILLS of the heavy vehicle driving profession through a more relevant qualifications system will make driving as a career more appealing to potential entrants, assist driver retention, reduce attrition rates and enhance safety, Road Transport Forum policy manager Mark Ngatuere believes. “Qualifications are one element of a range of measures to address our industry’s pressing workforce issues and will only have a positive impact if the qualification regime is simple, relevant and meets industry expectations,” he says. “Combination heavy truck drivers possess a wide range of skills. We want to promote a well-trained and highly-skilled profession; therefore it’s important that these skill sets are recognised and accredited as qualifications.” In 2016, RTF and various industry representatives were involved in condensing the 93 existing road freight transport qualifications into just five – the New Zealand Certificate in Commercial Road Transport (Loader or Yard person) (Level 2), the NZ Certificate in Commercial Road Transport (Heavy Vehicle Operator) (Level 3), the NZ Certificate in Commercial Road Transport (Specialist Driver) (Level 4) – with strands in transportation of logs, heavy haulage, livestock, dangerous

goods, waste, general cartage and groundspreading – the NZ Certificate in Commercial Road Transport (Operations Management) (Level 5), and the NZ Certificate in Commercial Road Transport (Senior Driver) (Level 5). The five qualifications were approved by the NZQA but need further tuning to make them more appealing and marketable to industry, says Ngatuere, who adds that the industry and the training organisation MITO are collaborating on a refinement of the qualifications and development of new programmes of training that will lead to the qualifications. There are two key principles that the RTF considers are important for the success of the qualifications into the future – the first being that more credit is given to on-the-job-based training, with less theoretical or academic emphasis and greater recognition of practical competence. Secondly, the RTF and MITO are working towards a regime where there’s greater provision for assessment to be carried out by third parties. Delivering on these principles will cut unnecessary cost and enable suitable people to provide training and assessment in the workplace, says Ngatuere: “There are numerous people out there with high levels of competence, who could easily transfer that to a recognised qualification. Truck & Driver | 47


THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

Trainee drivers studying for their licences. New, more relevant qualifications to better recognise the skills of drivers are now being devised – the Forum committed to have the qualifications give more credit to on-the-job training and practical competence

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THE DRIVING FORCE OF NEW ZEALAND TRUCKING

The aim of this work is get to a stage where a person could be literally assessed and gain a NZQA qualification for simply doing their job competently.” A Commercial Road Transport Reference Group (CRTG) has been formed to inform MITO what’s required to deliver results on behalf of the industry. The CRTG is made up of representatives from the commercial road transport sector and is responsible for: • Advising MITO on what the commercial road transport industry’s training requirements are, particularly in respect to the development, maintenance and review of the qualifications, unit standards, and learning and assessment resources. • Advising MITO about making industry training accessible to as wide a group of learners as possible. • Advising MITO in respect of keeping training requirements up to date and relevant to new or emerging technologies. • Providing a voice for industry associations and individual employers/employees on all matters of relevance to commercial road transport training. • Discussing issues and opportunities that relate to improving accessibility and the quality of on-the-job and off-the-job training. Says Ngatuere: “The CRTG is well under way and, so far, appears to be functioning well. Central to the whole project is the creation of a robust assessment framework. It needs careful consideration by industry as part of a programme of development that will support the overarching goals of increased qualifications uptake and streamlined assessment and training. It must be meticulously and scrupulously managed and co-ordinated at a national level to reduce unnecessary resource duplication and repetition.” Options for the assessment framework currently under discussion by CRTG are whether MITO undertakes sole delivery responsibility with the industry picking up the cost; or whether the industry assumes delivery and cost….or a hybrid of the two. “RTF’s prefered option is to create a MITO-industry hybrid,” says Ngatuere: “The collaborative buy-in from industry and MITO is mutually beneficial and necessary if industry is to broadcast to government that it’s serious about training and qualifications. Doing it this way also elevates MITO’s impartiality and provides collective oversight of the project.” Under this model MITO and industry would share costs and provision of resources, and the collaborative input would assist with the provision of agreed conditions between industry and the training organisation. Ngatuere believes that the industry is in the very fortunate position of being involved with development and fine tuning of our qualifications “as it gives us the opportunity to design and implement a regime to better enable on-the-job training and a fair assessment of a candidate’s competence. “Our people are professionals, with a high degree of technical competence. It’s time to align the qualifications system to better recognise that fact and allow them to be assessed while they work. “The industry’s aim is to get to a place where qualifications are truly considered relevant to the industry and the skills that people display day in and day out on the job, are also directly relevant to the qualifications available.” T&D

Road Transport Forum New Zealand was set up as a national body in 1997 to responsibly promote and advance the interests of the road transport industry and its member associations. Members of the Road Transport Forum’s member associations – NRC, NZ Trucking and RTANZ – are automatically affiliated to the Forum.

Road Transport Forum NZ PO Box 1778, Wellington 04 472 3877 forum@rtf.nz www.rtfnz.co.nz Ken Shirley, Chief Executive 04 472 3877 021 570 877 ken@rtf.nz National Road Carriers (NRC) Providing services that assist NZ transport businesses PO Box 12-100, Penrose, Auckland 0800 686 777 09 622 2529 (Fax) enquiries@natroad.co.nz www.natroad.co.nz David Aitken, Chief Executive 09 636 2951 021 771 911 david.aitken@natroad.co.nz Paula Rogers, Executive Officer 09 636 2957 021 771 951 paula.rogers@natroad.co.nz Grant Turner, Executive Officer 09 636 2953 021 771 956 grant.turner@natroad.co.nz Nicola Tapper, Executive Officer 09 636 2950 021 771 946 nicola.tapper@natroad.co.nz NZ Trucking Association (NZTA) Working for owner operators and the industry PO Box 16905, Hornby, Christchurch 8441 0800 338 338 03 349 0135 (Fax) info@nztruckingassn.co.nz www.nztruckingassn.co.nz David Boyce, Chief Executive 03 344 6257 021 754 137 dave.boyce@nztruckingassn.co.nz Carol McGeady, Executive Officer 03 349 8070 021 252 7252 carol.mcgeady@nztruckingassn.co.nz Women in Road Transport (WiRT) Promoting the sector as a preferred career option for women and supporting women in the industry www.rtfnz.co.nz/womeninroadtransport wirtnz@gmail.com

Road Transport Association of NZ (RTANZ) Formed in 2010 from the previous regional structure of the NZRTA National Office, PO Box 7392, Christchurch 8240 0800 367 782 03 366 9853 (Fax) admin@rtanz.co.nz www.rtanz.co.nz Dennis Robertson, Chief Executive 03 366 9854 021 221 3955 drobertson@rtanz.co.nz Area Executives Auckland/North Waikato/Thames Valley Keith McGuire 0800 367 782 (Option 2) 027 445 5785 kmcguire@rtanz.co.nz Southern Waikato/Bay of Plenty/Taupo/ Poverty Bay Dave Cox 0800 367 782 (Option 2) 027 443 6022 dcox@rtanz.co.nz King Country/Taranaki/Wanganui/ Manawatu/Horowhenua to Levin Tom Cloke 0800 367 782 (Option 4) 027 446 4892 tcloke@rtanz.co.nz Hawke’s Bay/Wairarapa/Otaki to Wellington Sandy Walker 0800 367 782 (Option 5) 027 485 6038 swalker@rtanz.co.nz Northern West Coast/Nelson/ Marlborough/North Canterbury John Bond 0800 367 782 (Option 6) 027 444 8136 jbond@rtanz.co.nz Southern West Coast/Christchurch/MidCanterbury/South Canterbury Simon Carson 0800 367 782 (Option 7) 027 556 6099 scarson@rtanz.co.nz Otago/Southland Alan Cooper 0800 367 782 (Option 8) 027 315 5895 acooper@rtanz.co.nz

Truck & Driver | 49


Min u

Gleeson & Cox MD James Gleeson and the brand-new Kenworth Legend 900 bought to mark the company’s 50th year – the first 25 run by his Dad and Don Cox....the last 25 under his direction

50 | Truck & Driver


FLEET FOCUS

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Truck & Driver | 51


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Gleeson & Cox’s current work includes a role in NZ’s biggestever infrastructure project – the $3.4billion inner-city underground rail system. Cut and cover tunnels are being excavated below the Fuso, on Albert St

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T’S AN AUCKLAND TRUCKING COMPANY THAT’S celebrating a landmark 50 years of existence. But it’s seconds, not years or decades, that people often measure Gleeson & Cox Transport by, as managing director James Gleeson explains: “They call us the minute men. Because you see a (Gleeson & Cox) truck every minute, driving down the motorway.” It sums up perfectly the remarkable development of a company that started out with just one truck in smalltown Waiuku, on the southwestern edge of the Manukau Harbour in 1967; was still at less than 20 trucks 25 years later…. But since then has grown spectacularly, at an everincreasing rate – to the point where its fleet of distinctive red trucks, with blue and white stripes, now numbers around 110. The company’s path, from a secondhand Dodge doing a modest cream run on the Awhitu Peninsula….developing into one of the industry’s biggest and most visible privately-owned fleets, now long based in Wiri, South Auckland, is a story of perseverance, setbacks, sad times and success. While the story of Gleeson & Cox as a company dates back to 1967, its lineage goes back much further – to James Gleeson’s great grandfather William, an Irish immigrant who arrived in New Zealand with his brother around 1868. “They came chasing gold in Ballarat, Australia, and ended up in NZ, mining in Thames-Coromandel and Shotover/Queenstown,” says James: “They came out of that with a pocketful of gold and became owners/builders of nine pubs in Auckland. The last remaining is the Albion (built in 1873); and pre that the Aurora (demolished

in 2010).” William parted company with his brother and bought a plot of land in Waipipi (on the Awhitu Peninsula, near Waiuku). “He married the girl next door, they started a family and had 13 children – the youngest son was my grandfather Daniel. He and his siblings used to take cream cans on a horse and cart to the dairy factory in the mornings and then went on to school. Daniel later saw this as a business opportunity and was able to get a contract and a loan to buy a truck.” With a Ford Model T, he started doing the cream run, aged just 13. Says James Gleeson: “In an Irishman’s world, at that age you’re free labour! Eventually, my grandfather bought more land at Waipipi – to the point where they named the road after the family. Gleeson Road…still exists today.” When he wasn’t doing the cream run, Daniel Gleeson kept the Model T busy by going down to the Manukau Harbour’s nearby shoals of shell, where he’d “shovel the shell from the banks into the back of the truck, to fill up potholes for the county. And that kept him busy until he sold his last truck – 1938 was the last year he owned a Diamond T, which was a big step up from a Model T – and he retired out of that and stayed with his farming.” The family’s interest in transport restarted in the early 1960s, when the late Brian (Doc) Gleeson (James’ Dad) and his wife Margaret established BW Gleeson Carriers in Waiuku. Says James: “His first truck was an old Dodge, carting cream cans. And from it, Dad got the business of Gleeson & Renall – spreading lime and fertiliser on farms. And so they ended up getting themselves a couple of trucks carting fertiliser off the boats – and that’s when Don Cox Truck & Driver | 53


He’s one of three employees who between them have notched up 100 years with Gleeson & Cox joined the company.” Margaret explains how it came about: “Don was actually a relation of a good friend of Brian’s Dad. They were all racehorse people. Don came to live with us when his marriage broke up.” Cox had done a motor mechanic’s apprenticeship with Schofields, then bought a logging truck, “which didn’t work out,” Margaret recalls – “so he came to us, as we needed a mechanic.” Gleeson & Cox was created when “an opportunity arrived to buy cream runs out to Manukau Heads,” she recalls. It started with just one truck, in Waiuku – but then soon expanded into Auckland city as well (not least of all, probably because Waiuku already had an established carrying company, Knight & Dickey). And, as Margaret says, “Don was all keen to expand – but there wasn’t a lot of work left in the haymaking and fertiliser, so we had to spread our wings…” James adds that “Don ran the Auckland side of the business, and Dad predominantly ran the southern part… which crossed over in the night. Back then it wasn’t unusual to work 16-18 hours on the trot. The majority of the work at the time was bulk loads. And….they were doing a little general work, plus the cream cans. Bulk has always been a staple for Gleesons.” 54 | Truck & Driver

Hard work too was (and always has been) a vital element – along with the key to business longevity…. the ability to adapt. Explains James: “In the 1970s, they started growing. They got an opportunity with the Glenbrook Steel Mill to cart export steel billets. They would have had around eight trucks in the fleet at that time... they never really grew much bigger than 10 throughout the ’70s and even into the ’80s, as some of the ventures dropped off. “I was born in 1966, so I got to see a lot of that. If you weren’t playing sport, in my father’s mind you were in the workshop. You soon figured out that playing sport was a lot more enjoyable!” Shortly after Gleeson & Cox formed, Jimmy (Jaws) Stancliffe joined the company as a young driver. Jaws, now 68 and still at the wheel of a Gleeson & Cox truck (he’s had the pleasure, for almost three years, of driving what has been the flagship of the fleet, a Kenworth T909 named The General), recalls how he came to start work at the company in 1969. “Brian and I were friends. We grew up together – used to water-ski and do everything together. I started working with him when I was 20. I was with them six years, then I left for a few years, then came back… and I’ve been here


Above: Kenworth T909, named The General, has been the company’s flagship for going on three years Opposite page: Daniel Gleeson in his Diamond T outside the Waiuku dairy factory. He upgraded from a Ford Model T for his cream run – work he supplemented by picking up shell from the nearby Manukau Harbour to fill potholes on local roads

for the last 27 years. He’s one of three employees who between them have notched up 100 years with Gleeson & Cox. The late Don Cox, Jaws says, “was a hard man to get on with, but he was a straight shooter, a bit….abrupt: It was his way or no way – but he was a good worker and a good man.” For a decade, the company worked away – gradually establishing itself on the wider Auckland trucking scene. Says James: “They rolled into the ’70s but it was a very difficult time – you had to get a licence to cart over a certain distance. Even going to Redvale (north of Auckland) with a load of lime needed a licence. It wasn’t too bad on the fertiliser side, because the rail wasn’t able to compete, but you couldn’t take a load of freight out of Auckland – hence you didn’t venture into that side of the market very much. “It was also difficult to buy trucks, with the whole controlled (import) environment. They had a fleet of D Series Fords, which weren’t that powerful, reliable or durable. They couldn’t afford the flavour of the year – the Mercedes 1418. So they repowered one D Series Ford with a Detroit, which was the first original ‘General.’ Don drove that truck for around 800,000km, with a couple of stacks out the back screaming as loud as you could imagine – day in, day out! It was quite a truck in its day. The cab rotted out from the fertiliser, so they put a later cab on it, and did the first take of the G&C logo. “Then they went to Australia and bought an

International TranStar 4200, disassembled it and brought it across in a container as parts, as you weren’t allowed to buy and import a truck, but you could bring in as many parts as you like. So they reassembled it here. But the poor thing had done its time, so there was a lot of time reassembling and rebuilding it. “By this time, in the early ’80s, International had established the S-Line 2600. Only the rich people could afford those in those days,” he reckons. By 1983 though, Gleeson & Cox had bought its first brand-new one. “At this point, Gleeson was still just a country carrier, with around eight trucks. The 1980s were difficult years: The gear wasn’t reliable, the work was seasonal and sporadic – and it wasn’t really picking up until we started focusing on Auckland as a market…when we built a relationship with the original Downer Construction family. They owned the quarry at Wiri, and around 1987 we started carting (for them) as a subcontractor. And we grew that side of the business from one to three trucks.” This growth was helped by the company’s drivers at the time – guys like Mike Hayes, who spent more than a quarter of a century with the company before retiring in 2014. He recalls how he got started with Gleeson & Cox: “I first met Don in 1972, when he had the one Ford truck and hair down to his shoulders. Both of us carted fertiliser from the ships to the works in Otahuhu and Morrinsville. “In the early 80s, Don had four or five trucks and called me and asked if I could help him out. A couple of Truck & Driver | 55


Above: Company co-founder, the late Brian Gleeson, in the early 1990s Right: Dodge 4x2 was Brian Gleeson’s first truck

weeks became 25 years!” Hayes was 67 when he retired. He remembers Don as a man who, “while easy to get on with….didn’t suffer fools and would call a spade a spade – and let you know if you were anything other. He was a hard man, but fair.” Twenty years into the company’s existence, Brian Gleeson and Don Cox were starting to see some real potential in the Auckland transport market. Unhappily, their sharpened focus on the city coincided with some economic hard times in NZ, including lingering fallout from the 1987 “Black Monday” share market crash. The Gleeson family involvement in the business extended to Margaret doing all the administration side for a couple of decades: “I used to do it all myself and I had to write everything by hand…” until she eventually got help…and a computer. But James, the second son of Brian and Margaret’s three kids (Geoffrey is older and Maria younger) had already headed off overseas by the mid-1980s: “I didn’t have a lot of interest in Dad’s business. I’d seen it all my life as a kid and it didn’t spin my wheels. “I’d developed my own skillsets… I’d just come off working two years at the Glenbrook steel mill, driving a crane and building the whole processing part. It was way more exciting and the wages back then were 56 | Truck & Driver

probably double a truck driver’s. And I got to work for an Australian company….I did four years on and off in Australia – everywhere from Mt Isa to Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne. We went where the work was. “Then, in the late ’80s, I got an opportunity as a labourer/carpenter/steelworker in America. It was good money and we got to travel around.” In late 1990 that phase of his life came to abrupt end, with some bad news from home: “Mum rings me and says ‘you’ve got to come home – Dad’s been diagnosed with multiple myeloma cancer’… basically bone marrow cancer, and it was terminal. So a few months later, I was on a plane home. “I struggled upon returning. From America to Waiuku! It was hard – like stepping back in time. So I moved to Auckland. “When I came home, there was Dad, Don, myself and two other drivers… we were down to around six people! You felt a real compression of the market with the recession and the share market crash. It was hard times… If you had a milk truck, you’d cart it every day. But if you were in construction…people stopped building houses; the government had no money to spend; no motorways were being built. So you felt the pain of the country a lot more.


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“We were based in Waiuku, and Don had one truck based in Auckland at the time, so we’d spend our time running between there and here and kept things moving… and things slowly started picking up. After the diagnosis, rather than giving up work, Dad was even more relentless: Apart from the bad patches with the chemo, he was hellbent on growing the business. Don was also concerned about what was going to be left, so they had some challenging conversations. “I eventually settled down, got my head around the opportunity and got to the point where I wasn’t controlled or influenced so much by Dad.” Around that time, another longterm employee Terry (Turtle) Marshall joined the company: “I can remember the day I started: 27 July 1993. It was a Tuesday,” the 53-year-old reckons. “They had good looking gear, so I rang up Mr Brian Gleeson, and he asked me if I could back, spread, jackknife and use a Roadranger…and then told me to start at 7am the next day. “I beat James (into the company) by a year, but when he started, we met in an odd way. I’d had a bit of a slow day and was asleep in my cab….James knocked on my door to say he wasn’t suitably impressed. We’ve progressed from there, and we’ve worked together

ever since. I was driving for about five years, then ran dispatch for nine years, until I left on good terms.” He returned in 2012 as an onsite co-ordinator – a role he explains: “Before we start a job, we visit, take photos and draw up a site inspection form, and all the pics get downloaded into the company computer, which is then sent to the truck drivers’ tablets, so when they start a job, they read all the notes, see all the photos and know exactly where to go. “We used to do everything on paper… then in 2007, we started with a system called Jobplus. Within a week it was rocking – from pen and paper to computer. The work that Paul Holdom (the company’s IT project manager) has recently done on the tablet system is unbelievable: You can push a button and it shows up in the truck. It’s a major advance and has been running for three years – it’s a very simple system to use.” In Turtle’s time with the company “we’ve had some huge jobs: When I started we were doing the extension widening at Mangere (for the Southwestern Motorway), then the Sunset Road (Northern Motorway) offramp. We had the Puhinui Rd (Southwestern Motorway) interchange upgrade – that was a huge job, with 40 of our own trucks plus up to 100 subbies. We dug the hole for the base of the Sky Tower….that took two years. It was a hell of a hole!” Truck & Driver | 59


Clockwise, from top left: Co-founder the late Don Cox, pictured around 2002...International TranStar was bought in Australia in the early 1980s, disassembled, imported as parts to get around truck import restrictions, then reassembled....Ford D1000 bought in the mid-1970s was later repowered with a Detroit and re-cabbed as well....the BW Gleeson and Gleeson & Renall trucks in Waiuku in the early days

The company base though wasn’t up to much, as Turtle recalls: “We had one little shed that leaked, at the back of Downers. We did all our own maintenance on the ground on a concrete pad, covered in grease. And brake adjustments. Then we moved to Kerrs Rd and had three toilets, running water, a roof, service bay, and a yard to park on! It was amazing, that transformation.” It came about, says James Gleeson, when the Road-Air Hawke’s Bay trucking operation, with an Auckland base at the Kerrs Rd, Wiri property, moved out. There was, he says, “quite a bit of interest” in the property – and to head off the other would-be buyers “I put my real estate agent on a plane to Napier to knock on the door (of the Road-Air owners) on the night of the farewell to staff… It got me the sale – and the building, which was another good milestone and we were able to grow from there.” In terms of the fleet and what it was doing, “we got to the stage where we were around a dozen trucks – and we started buying some new gear as opportunities rose. Dad bought a W Model Kenworth logging truck and I did that for six months. We also had a MAN eight-wheeler and a four-axle trailer (logging unit)…” But James soon came to the realisation that “it was requiring a lot of my time to keep those one or two (log) trucks busy. And, as Dad’s health started to go downhill, I made the conscious 60 | Truck & Driver

decision that I needed to worry about the 12 trucks – not the two logging trucks.” In November 1994, four years after his first diagnosis, Brian Gleeson died. He was just 55. James points out that before getting into trucking, “Dad was doing agricultural contracting. He was spraying willows and gorse for the council… “His nickname was Gorsey in his earlier days, because at the end of a day of spraying willow and gorse, he’d go to the pub and was always smelling of that horrible stuff – the 2,4,5-T (a herbicide, long since discredited as carcinogenic and banned in some countries)… We reckon that’s what eventually killed him. “My Dad’s passing left a big pair of shoes to fill… challenging personally as well, to lose someone in your family who’s a significant part of it.” James Gleeson’s philosophy is that in such situations “you can sit on it and dwell and procrastinate – and it won’t change anything, because you’re not thinking about the future. If you want to go forward you need to walk forward and make an effort… Nothing comes to you in life.” This attitude marked a turning point – in his life, AND in Gleeson & Cox’s development. The result was that what was potentially one of the worst things that could


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happen to the company, developed into a positive. Says James: “I had a conversation with Don at the time. From his perspective, he went into business with my mother and father, and didn’t want another business partner – and said, hand-on-heart: ‘I’ll drive this truck, which probably has another two to three years of life left in it, then I’m out of here.’ I didn’t argue with that, and said ‘we’ll see what we can do in the interim.’ “I had enough influence by that time, and showed him that I had some potential to create something… I was 28, so you’re starting to think straight at that age. Don was driving the trucks and dispatching the drivers – I was on the road with the cellphone, running to the nearest fax to make a quote. I started developing relationships and knocking on doors. Before long, I’d doubled the size of the fleet, and won a major contract for the Quay St realignment. “This was a turning point for the company. We took in a quarter of a million tonnes of metal and took more than a million tonnes of fill out – and I brokered and facilitated that first job. Before that, our biggest job was 10,000 tonnes.” To make it happen “we bought six brand-new Western Stars at once! Previously, if we’d bought two trucks in 10 years, we’d wonder how we were going to pay for them!” The Western Stars “were the flavour of the month in those days: Good horsepower, light tare weights. And before we knew it we had drivers knocking down our door to drive them. That was a really strong presence for us, as very few companies ran better gear.” Moving into Gleeson & Cox’s current HQ in Aerovista Place, Wiri was another “significant move forward and enabled us to grow. It was originally built for MAN in the 62 | Truck & Driver

early ’90s. We moved in three years ago, as we’d well and truly outgrown our other properties and Kerrs Rd. There’s a lot of real estate here for a carpark.” And just as well too – given the company’s dramatic growth since then: “We moved into Kerrs Rd with 20 trucks. Then it was 25, then 50…and now it’s 112 trucks, including the latest Kenworth Legend 900 (bought to mark the company’s half-century milestone).” Gleeson & Cox’s 50th year finds James having now managed the company for the same period as his Dad – 25 years apiece. But the growth has been exponential in the modern era. Jaws ventures the opinion that “Brian would never have gotten this big. He would have stayed at eight trucks. When Brian passed on, things started happening. Don got it going, and James had the balls to step up and bought trucks. He’s had a few downs, but he’s come right.” Mike Hayes agrees: “Don had a good business head and long after Brian was gone, Don was the company – from behind the steering wheel. James was lucky in a way. He took over the company with 12 trucks, and had a good kick-start, with some good people behind him, accounts and the like. He took some chances and the company has grown.” Margaret too says that “James has really driven the expansion. I don’t think Brian would have accepted moving forward so fast.” James responds: “In all fairness, in Dad and Don’s environment there were already quite significant players in their generation… Mine was a bit of a maverick approach in some aspects – in that you’re young, keen and lean and a little bit thick-skinned. We developed


Above: The company trucks haunt the port, picking up and delivering bulk loads Opposite page, clockwise, from top left: When James Gleeson landed a major job doing the cartage for the realignment of Quay St, he bought six new Western Stars at once.... Daniel Gleeson on the far left outside the local dairy factory. His truck is at the left rear....Jimmy ( Jaws ) Stancliffe in the late 1990s with his 3600 Inter...and now with his Kenworth T909, The General

relationships and just did what we said we were going to do. There were some difficult times, but you soon got to the stage where you provide a good service, and you buy good gear. “My Dad was more conservative, based on the journey and how hard it was to make it. I took a lot of risks, but I always thought the most important thing was to get it under way… and you’ve got to reset the sails if the wind changes direction. “By the early 2000s, we’d definitely secured our path and landscape with 40-plus trucks, and we’d employ contractors to bolster our numbers.” He reels off a string of Auckland’s biggest infrastructure projects – each of them jobs that Gleeson & Cox has worked on: “We’ve done right up over the top of the Bombays, we’ve done the East-West Link at Mt Wellington, part of the extension for the Greville Rd/Albany State Highway 1 realignment, the Vector Energy tunnel (carrying new power cables to secure Auckland’s electricity supply in the wake of the city’s 1998 power crisis), the Mt Roskill realignment through to the Waterview Tunnel and widening the Northwestern Motorway’s Te Atatu causeway. As he sums up: “We’ve been involved in virtually every motorway project, in some shape or form, since the mid’90s.” It all sounds only positive, but there have been challenges amidst the successes. Don Cox stopped

working in 2004 and James became the sole director of the company three years later: “Dad, Mum and Don started the company – Dad was the driver and also to a degree the major shareholder and made the tougher decisions. “In the early days I used to talk to Don and my Mum, She was more administrative, but she truly understood and trusted the two of us. I had those tough conversations with Don, but it was me that drove it. The older you are, you start looking at how many years before retiring, while I’m looking at climbing the mountain! “There was my mother’s departure as well. None of those things are easy to deal with. They both stuck with me and supported me and they both put a lot of their lives into it. Some of it was good, some bad. But you’re at the point where you need to reshape things and surround yourself with some good people….versus losing the comfort of Don and Mum being there and knowing they’ve got your back.” After departing the company he’d co-founded, Don Cox spent a few years working for J Swap Contractors, but passed away in 2014 – also claimed by cancer. There were external challenges to cope with too, as James Gleeson remembers well: “Around 2008, we were at about 60-odd trucks. We were predominantly doing our work at the end of the western motorway, and the Upper Harbour Highway in the mid-2000s. We also did the Hobsonville Link around 2009. Then the GFC turned up…” Truck & Driver | 63


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Top left: Daniel Gleeson started driving a Ford Model T on a cream run at the age of 13! Above: Late ‘90s-vintage International TranStar 4700 is one of four old Inters still on the fleet Left: The Gleeson & Cox fleet in 1998, at the Whitford quarry

A little surprisingly, he reckons that the likes of the Global Financial Crisis “brings out the best in you. We were running very strong in 2009, but started feeling it in 2010. Some of the things we had to restructure – the values were coming down and the margins were dropping. And people were scrapping over things – and people were going broke… it was managing the impact. “One of the good things that looked after us was how we built our gear and what we bought: We didn’t have a big European influence in the fleet, but we had some – and we learnt a lesson that they were not the right trucks to own when things were going bad. A Japanese or American truck sold like nothing had changed, and through that entire GFC we sold every vehicle we needed to, above the market valuation – because we’ve always built stuff right, we’ve always maintained our gear and the choice of the gear is good for the secondtier operator, as they want something without a high maintenance bill. “The GFC pushed us down to around 35 units. Then, around 2011, we could see a bit of a change. There’s no shame in surviving – but…you make more money coming out of a GFC because resources aren’t available and there’s opportunity…. It became game-on in 2012-2013 – and we needed to grow. “We were chasing down some rather large contracts

and we procured work with NZ Steel, Fulton Hogan, Downers, Fletchers and HEB, to name a few. “We picked up a lot of work that was off-season, which helped balance the bell curves in the income and that allowed us to think more positively about growth and sustainability and getting new gear in. Everybody knows the best truck model is always ‘the runout.’ So we heard about the runout of 15 Fuso 6M70s… and I bought seven of them. They’re a good workhorse – not the fastest, but comfortable and economical. We were growing and I knew it was a good truck at a good price and thought ‘we’ll worry about the jobs later.’ “We were quickly back up to a fleet of 45…we’re looking at over 50% growth, just over the last five years.” The fleet now stands at 112 – taking in nine makes. Mitsubishi Fuso has the biggest presence, with 38 trucks, with 18 Kenworths, 16 DAFs, 15 Isuzus, 14 Volvos (including old NL and FL models), four Internationals, four Hinos, two Fodens and a solitary Nissan. The current fleet is totally dedicated to bulk work – with “a combination of steel-bodied bins to do harder work, site trucks to load under diggers and the main fleet of truck and trailers to haul the volume.” In 2014, says Gleeson, “the journey started to change a bit. A few players in the civil division had made a few bad choices and left some holes in the market and we Truck & Driver | 65


R

Above: Volvos have modestly figured in the fleet for many years Top right: Margaret Gleeson says husband Brian probably wouldn’t have driven the expansion that son James has managed Right, both pictures: The company branding has changed over the years

chose to start Gleeson Civil. We’ve had to manage it without upsetting our client base, but with finding key staff, we have 30 items of plant under the civil division – ranging from very large diggers down… “And we’re currently on two major projects of significance – doing the cover for CRL2 (the second stage of Auckland’s City Rail Link, NZ’s biggest infrastructure project) at Albert St for Connectus, which is an Auckland City/Government joint venture. And we’ve just picked up the two stages of the Westfield (shopping centre) redevelopment in Newmarket.” What it amounts to, James says, is that “in just three years, Gleeson Civil is now in our top five customers for Gleeson & Cox, which has given us the opportunity to feed our trucks. And we’ve now got control of chasing work, rather than being a customer to the civil guys. “The levels of compliance and the ability to prove to your client you’re worthy of the job and you’re an asset, not a liability, ensures they’ll come and use you again. We have a strong operational influence: The site is generally visited by one of our site co-ordinators, photographed and mapped. “Everyone blames the truck driver for doing the dumb things, but did we give them the right information? This also relates to the inhouse development of our tablet-based application for drivers – to ensure they’re compliant with their permit. It performs a calculation based on the gross vehicle weight, number of axles and the route, which saves time and reduces the potential for error – getting the right vehicle, with the right permit, on 66 | Truck & Driver

the right route. Information also flows back and forth to the truck in real time.” Drivers can “Google link their location, sight exploratory information, see the view driving down the road before they enter a job… It’s smart but simple, and our guys can now sell the technology as a potential business opportunity.” Every company driver uses it….with just one exception: Jaws. As Margaret Gleeson observes, “he’s been doing it for so many years, he knows all the roads, he knows where to go… he doesn’t need a tablet.” Ask James Gleeson, now 51, where to from here and he explains: “I view every 25 trucks as a different module supporting different infrastructure. We got to 100 pretty quickly, then 110, so any more and you need to take a step to the next 15….or step back. I think we’ll probably reduce some of the older gear over the next year or two. “We have good drivers: We do everything that everyone else does. We have three inhouse trainers, but find me the right attitude and we’ll make them a driver. It’s challenging… we train, we import, we do whatever we can to get bums on seats. But they’re here because they like to work here, and I like to think it’s a good place to work. Both Turtle and Jaws confirm that separately: “I enjoy my time here and I intend to stay here a lot longer. Until I retire….or win Lotto,” reckons Turtle. And Jaws adds: “I’ll just stay here. James built The General for me and I’m quite comfortable with it… but I will have a play with the Legend!”


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Top left: The late Don Cox (left), with James Gleeson (centre) and the now-retired Mike Hayes Top right: Terry (Turtle) Marshall has been with the company for 24 years.....but the S-Line Inter predates him by over a decade! Above left: Tablets issued to every driver carry detailed info on routes, job sites and much more Above right: The best truck you can buy, reckons James Gleeson, is “the runout.” The Mitsubishi Fusos, posing here beside a Kenworth T904, are two of 38 on the fleet – clearly giving the Japanese make the biggest presence in Gleeson & Cox colours

James sums up: “We’re looking at bigger things on the landscape now…. We do have a growth strategy, but you’ve got to identify the workload versus free market. And a speculative free market is good while the sun’s shining, but doesn’t allow balance in the business model. “The Glenbrook Steel Mill work has been one of the milestones – incredibly demanding, with high levels of standards and compliance, and it propelled us into a new dimension of transport. Now we are a very compliant and low-risk model for our clients. We understand now-time delivery, we’ve got our equipment and tech to the point where we know exactly how many loads are being done in a day or at any one time, whether a driver’s ahead or behind schedule…we can manage fatigue and the whole health and safety consciousness.” Turtle describes himself as the company’s “steel man – that’s my little baby. We run site trucks and on/off cartage for Glenbrook.” There is one thorn in the side to that work, says James – the HPMV permitting process: “If my fleet was running in the Waikato, it’d be a great story. Up here in Auckland it’s a nightmare. It takes six weeks to get a permit, it turns up when you finish the job – they’re always running out. You can’t even drive to a petrol station! We’ve employed a person fulltime to maintain permits, which is only functioning at 20%, not 90% – where it should be. “In the Waikato, a permit comes back with all the 68 | Truck & Driver

routes, and you can drive on the one piece of paper. Up here, you might have 20 routes and 20 individual permits, and the driver’s got to present the permits on the day. You can imagine the pile of paper the driver is carrying in the cab… so we put all that on the tablet.” The milestone moments in the story of Gleeson & Cox are key – and indicative of the company’s spectacular development in recent years. There’s been all the motorway work, buying the Kerrs Road, Noel Burnside and Aerovista Place properties, securing the Glenbrook Steel Mill cartage contract, rebounding from the GFC…. plus another major factor in its development, gratefully acknowledged by James: “It’s the support from some really good people….which has taken a number of years to grow. It’s a lifetime journey, but I’m humbly surrounded by good people... I’m proud of all my people. My predecessors are pretty humble and I share that view a little myself.” There is the potential for at least another generation of Gleesons to run the business – with James’ sons Blake (15) and Clark (12) already showing interest. “In 15 years, I’ll be 65-66,” says James, before pausing and adding: “But they’ve got to want to. We’ll keep that opportunity open for them, but it’s a decision they’ll need to make.” A new company motto was introduced in 2011: “We move mountains.” And after 50 years, given James Gleeson’s philosophy of constantly “looking forward and walking forward,” it’s still climbing them too. T&D


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SUZU SAYS THAT IT WANTS TO SUPPORT TRUCK drivers – “the front-line people of transport – with unconventional ideas.” Okay…so, at the 45th Tokyo Motor Show (which, by the way, has as its theme “Beyond The Motor”), it’s a case of objective achieved. Totally! Its futuristic FD-SI light-duty metro delivery truck concept unveiled at the annual Japanese show….was, after all, inspired by insects. Its honeycomb exterior design is so beyond conventional it’s immediately likened to a “toaster on wheels.” The Future Delivery design study is spectacular (and unconventional) enough to pinch quite a bit of the

Tokyo show’s commercial vehicles limelight – even though Fuso makes global news by beating Tesla to the punch in unveiling a mid-sized electric truck. The Vision One is an electric concept truck, which Fuso says will be able to carry a 10-tonne payload up to 350 kilometres – running at up to a 20.8-tonne gross vehicle weight. Its unveiling comes soon after the global launch of the light-duty eCanter, the world’s first electric truck to go into series production…. And it’s accompanied in Tokyo by Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation (MFTBC) revealing that the Vision One and the eCanter are just part of an electric Truck & Driver | 73


Top & left: A new, downsized engine is unveiled at Tokyo for UD Trucks’ Quon flagship, which was launched earlier in the year. The eight-litre GH8 (left) saves weight and fuel compared to the current 11-litre powerplant Above right: Scania makes an appearance at the show for the first time

grand plan – which will see it introduce electric versions of its entire truck and bus range. With its E-FUSO brand, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus says it’s the first manufacturer to launch a product line exclusively dedicated to electric vehicles. The timeframe for the E-FUSO range is vague as yet, Fuso saying only that it’ll happen “in upcoming years” – the timing for the launch of each model “defined according to the required technology and feasibility.” And the company concedes that the electrification of long-haul trucks “will still need considerable time.” But, Fuso sees the Vision One, with its GVW and range, fitting well in regional inter-city distribution work – and, by utilising its experience in developing and testing the eCanter, it says it’s hoping to see the mid74 | Truck & Driver

sized truck join the eCanter on the market relatively quickly. MFTBC CEO and president and Daimler Trucks Asia boss Marc Llistosella says that the Vision One “is an outlook on a feasible all-electric heavy-duty truck. Given the fact that growing customer interest, infrastructure development and regulatory efforts are likely to spur the electrification of road transport, a possible market entry for the series version of the E-FUSO Vision One could be feasible within four years – in mature markets like Japan, Europe or the United States.” Adds Llistosella: “With the eCanter, we have proven electric trucks are feasible for commercialisation. Today, our eCanter saves up to 1000 Euros in running costs


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per 10,000kms. And with the rapidly evolving battery technology, we will continue to develop electric trucks and buses that will have a positive environmental and economic impact on society.” The eCanter, which has a 7.5t GVW and a 100-120km range on a single charge, is now in the hands of its first buyers – convenience store giant Seven-Eleven and freight delivery service Yamato in Japan and the United Parcel Service and three non-government organisations in the US. The creation of a full range of Fuso electric models is in keeping with the status of Daimler Trucks’ Japanese make as the global giant’s leader in electric truck development. But E-FUSO will benefit from access to the huge technical resources held by Daimler, including battery supplier Deutsche Accumotive – a Daimler subsidiary. Mercedes-Benz Energy, a specialist in stationary energy storage systems, offers opportunities for a second lifecycle of the batteries, while Chargepoint – the world’s largest provider of charging stations and infrastructure – is partly owned by Daimler. So too is StoreDot, an Israeli startup that’s developing new fast-charging battery technology. StoreDot has reportedly already come up with a method of charging an electric car in just five minutes 76 | Truck & Driver

– and Daimler is working with the company to tailor the same technology to commercial vehicles. As a result MFTBC is aiming to have that technology in use on its trucks within four years. Currently the eCanter’s batteries take around 90 minutes to fully recharge, whereas a five-minute recharging time would make it comparable to a diesel refuel. Fuso is also working on a smartphone app to show electric truck drivers the location of nearby charging stations – indicating the distance to the facility and how far the truck can travel on its remaining battery power. It will also provide cost-savings advice for charging the eCanter, based on usage patterns. With a government drive to develop infrastructure to support electric vehicles, Japan already has about 7000 charging stations…but there is a drawback: They lack parking spaces large enough to accommodate trucks. To address that, Mitsubishi Fuso plans to install charging equipment at its 250 sales and service stations across Japan within two to three years. Staying with the electric truck focus, Isuzu backs-up its space-age FD-SI with the Elf EV – a fully-electric version of its light-duty truck, featuring a large-capacity battery, with rapid-charging capability. Isuzu promotes the 4x2 as a “zero-emissions, low-


All pictures, clockwise from above: The Vision One medium-duty electric truck is introduced by Fuso and Daimler Trucks Asia boss Marc Llistosella.... Isuzu’s Elf EV – a fully-electric light truck..... Hino boss Yoshio Shimo says the company is making trucks that are “more helpful for the world”.... Isuzu’s latest GIGA rangetopper now has the option of predictive cruise control.... Volvo makes an appearance at the show.... The Fuso eCanter electric truck is now in the hands of its first customers

vibration delivery truck” – one that’s powered by a lithium-ion battery delivering it a range of at least 100kms on a single charge. The Isuzu presence, based on the theme of “Driving the New Age of Transport,” includes a heavy-duty 8x4 Giga model that celebrates the truckmaker’s 80th anniversary – with features including a remote monitoring system that transmits vehicle data to ensure safe driving and a new predictive cruise control system, Smartglide+g. Like other manufacturers’ systems, it uses GPS to automatically select the best gear for hills and to put the transmission into coasting mode for optimal fuel efficiency. The truck, with a 380hp/279kW engine and an MJX12 Smother-Gx automated manual transmission, is capable of delivering up to 4.25kms per litre in terms of fuel economy. There are also 80th Anniversary Edition medium-duty Forward and light-duty Elf models models on show – the Forward now achieving 10% better fuel economy than the 2015 model. The 7.98-tonne GVW 4x2, with a 210hp/154kW engine, is reckoned to be good for 8.1kms per litre. The Elf has been the best-selling truck in the Japanese domestic truck market’s two-three tonne class for 16 years straight, Isuzu says.

It also has a 160hp/191kW 6x6 rigid here – a model it says targets forest firefighting and rescue work in rough terrain and during flooding. Finally, there’s something else new from Isuzu here – a new word! Preism, it says, is an advanced maintenance service in which data collected onboard is monitored remotely by Isuzu’s Minamori telematics system, “to identify unusual symptoms to proactively prevent vehicle breakdowns. Always looking into the future, Isuzu continues to support customers’ uptime maximisation.” In other words, preism is Isuzu’s compound word “to denote taking preventive measures to avert failures – an integral part of Isuzu’s practice.” Hino’s show theme is “Trucks and buses that do more” – that is, as Hino Motors president and CEO Yoshio Shimo says, “more safety conscious, more connected to society, more attractive, more environmentally friendly, more intelligent, more powerful and, more than ever, incorporate new ideas to keep you smiling.” The aim, he adds, is “to make trucks and buses more helpful for the world.” Unlike its major Japanese rivals Isuzu and Fuso, the Toyota-owned truckmaker doesn’t go electric here – well, not with a truck anyway (although it does show Truck & Driver | 77


Above: While its focus is heavily on electric trucks, with the eCanter, the Vision One and the announcement of an entire E-FUSO range of them, Fuso also has its diesel range on show, including the flagship heavy-duty model, known in Japan as the Super Great

Left: Hino launches two new downsized engines at the show – the nine-litre AO9C (top) as a 700 Series option and the AO5C (lower) for the 500 Series

an electric version of its mid-sized Poncho urban bus). It concentrates instead on the first updates to its popular 700 Series heavy-duty trucks and medium-duty 500 Series in 14 years and 16 years respectively – and on a new, downsized engine designed to cut fuel use and exhaust emissions. The updated and upgraded models, says Hino, “prioritise operability and comfort as well as safety… .“so that senior, females and young citizens and everyone can drive with a smile.” Safety systems include a collision avoidance automatic braking system – capable of detecting pedestrians and cyclists as well as other vehicles – and a lane departure warning system as standard. The 700 Series redo includes an interior and exterior redesign and a new engine offering – the AO9C nine-litre six, producing 380hp/279kW and delivering “great environmental performance,” as the truckmaker puts it. It has a Dimple Liner – a means of reducing resistance by forming dimples (small concavities) in the piston slide section of the cylinder liner – a two-stage turbocharger and ultra-high-pressure common rail fuel injection. Hino says it delivers a “significant weight saving” and improved fuel efficiency. The 500 Series also has new styling inside and out and a downsized engine – its AO5C is a 260hp/191kW five-litre, four-cylinder version of the AO9C. The medium-duty trucks also have the same standard safety features as the 700 Series models, including automatic braking. The 300 Series Hybrid on show also has the automatic braking system, plus a new six-speed

automatic transmission and a wider cab. It’s reckoned to deliver the lowest fuel consumption in its class, at 13.2kms per litre. UD Trucks says at the show that its “one simple goal” is to “create the best truck for all drivers.” The Japanese arm of the global Volvo Group says that “in a time of severe driver shortages,” it’s “passionate about solving the challenges customers are facing.” The focus here – coming in the wake of this year’s launch of the new heavy-duty Quon flagship model – is on a downsized engine option for the Quon, revealed for the first time. The eight-litre GH8 engine will be launched late next year, delivering better fuel efficiency, lighter weight and thus improved payload capacity – joining the current GH11 engine (which, UD confirmed six months back, is getting a power upgrade to 460hp). The Quon, says UD, delivers “innovation in five essential areas – drivability, fuel efficiency, safety, productivity, and uptime.” It shows off a 6x2 freightbodied rigid, a 4x2 tractor unit and a 6x4 tipper – alongside UD’s Quester heavy truck, which targets Asian, African, Middle East and South American markets. The Quester will also have the eight-litre engine option when it’s launched in about 12 months’ time. Sharing space with UD Trucks at the show is sister make Volvo – with an FH 6x4 tractor unit. And Volvo’s Swedish rival brand Scania is here too….in its case, for the first time. It takes the opportunity to launch its new truck generation on the Japanese market, with the message at the show that it’s driving the shift to sustainable transport….and it’s “here to stay.” T&D

78 | Truck & Driver

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Truck Driver Safety Matters Since 2010, there have been more than 23 collisions between heavy vehicles and trains at level crossings in New Zealand, and more than 300 near misses. TrackSAFE NZ wants to reduce these incidents and help save lives. We are launching a research project to collect information on your experiences as a heavy vehicle driver around level crossings. Your feedback will be used to develop a new safety education campaign to help reduce the number of incidents involving heavy vehicles. The research will involve either a short phone call or an online survey which would take around 10 minutes of your time. This will happen between December 2017 and February 2018. Everyone who takes part will go into a prize draw for one of five $200 fuel vouchers.

For more information about the research, please email tracksafe@tracksafe.co.nz or phone Megan on (04) 498 2010 To register directly for the research or to provide a list of willing participants from your organisation, email Karen.Connell@umr.co.nz or phone Karen on (04) 473 1066

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4/10/17 12:56 PM


OLD IRON

Heatons hit the heights Story & Photos: Gavin Abbot

Above: In 1937 this Heatons 221D Diamond T did the company’s freight run from Tauranga to Auckland Left: Ford Thornton was also used on the Auckland run at one point

Truck & Driver | 81

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Michael, who drives the Fighter every day. “It has impressive power across the rev range, especially in the lower gears, which makes it nice and smooth and easy to drive. “The cab is really comfortable and there are a number of useful features like Hill Start Assist, which gives you greater control, and heated mirrors, which make a big difference on frosty mornings.” Read the full story and more online!

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Above: Heatons’ Diamond T and a truck from Pukekohe operator Stembridges waiting to load in Auckland in the 1940s Left: This Leyland Beaver was the forerunner of many others on the Heatons fleet

J

ACK HEATON SET UP IN BUSINESS AS A CARRIER IN Tauranga in the late 1920s – officially establishing Heatons Transport by 1930. The operation’s work included carrying general goods, cream runs, metal cartage, delivering firewood and doing pickups from the wharf. Alf Baikie ran another carrying business in the Bay of Plenty centre at the time….but the Depression killed-off that operation, with Baikie going to work for his friend Jack Heaton, becoming one of his first employees. Despite the tough times, the business grew, with Heatons

running a fleet of impressive Diamond T trucks. In 1938, Heatons purchased the transport business of B. Taylor’s AARD Freight Service – an old-established business that had the benefit of a rail-exempt licence for general goods between Tauranga and Auckland. Taylor had initially used a REO on this run, replacing it with a couple of Diamond Ts, which continued to operate until after World War 2. In 1948, Alf Baikie and Norm Leslie joined Jack Heaton as coowners of the new Heatons Transport Ltd. In 1951, a Ford Thornton semi unit that was on the Auckland run was replaced with the first Leyland Beaver diesel to join the Truck & Driver | 83


Abowe: When Heatons took over B.Taylor’s AARD Freight Service, it was using this REO Speedwagon on the Auckland run Left: One of a number of S26 Scammells that featured in the Heatons fleet

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Top: 1935 model 220D Diamond T would have been an impressive unit in its day Centre: Ergo Leyland Octopus was one of two on the fleet at one stage

86 | Truck & Driver

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Above: A lineup of Heaton trucks in 1987 at the ex-Kirk & Graham yard


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Clockwise, from top: An impressive Scammell Crusader unit in the 1980s.... LAD-cabbed Leyland Opus was the company’s first twin-steer unit.... This 12B 4x2 was the first Leyland Beaver to join the Heatons fleet

fleet. The reliability and performance of this unit led to Heatons electing to stick to Leyland Group trucks from then on. In 1955, Heaton and Leslie sold their shareholding to Baikie, who became the majority owner. The firm grew, not least of all from the series of acquisitions made by Baikie, with Heatons taking over other carriers including Cyril Flemming, Rankins Transport, Macklins Transport, Jack Todd, part of Willets Transport, Tauranga Carrying Co, and Kirk & Graham.

Many impressive Leyland heavies were used on the Auckland run and Heatons was operating around 80 trucks by 1988….when the company merged with Thames Valley company Provincial Transport, creating Provincial Heatons Ltd. A new red, yellow and white colour scheme was applied to the combined group’s widely-varying lineup of makes and models. However, although the new operation covered a broad range of road transport business, by 1990 the firm was placed in receivership and was broken up and sold. T&D Truck & Driver | 89


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FEATURE

Fuel-saving measures on this Nussbaum Freightliner Cascadia run from a relocated number plate (for better aerodynamics) to a liftable tag axle and predictive cruise control

Story Wayne Munro

Existing tech delivers

big fuel saving A

DEMONSTRATION OF JUST HOW MUCH FUEL CAN BE SAVED BY linehaul trucks in the United States – using only technologies already on the market – has turned up some remarkable results. Run on Less, a first of its kind cross-country roadshow, saw seven working trucks average 10.1 miles per gallon (which equates to 4.29 kilometres per litre)….without using alternative power or fuel. Demo hosts Carbon War Room (CWR) – a global non-profit organisation working to cut carbon emissions – and the North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE), had set nine miles per gallon/3.83kms per litre as the goal for the exercise….a 28% improvement on the US national average of 6.4mpg/2.71kms per litre. The trucks, from seven fleets, were monitored as they drove over 50,000 miles/80,000kms on their regular runs during a three-week period. The NACFE says that the results are “staggering…..when you connect the dots and realise that if the 1.7 million trucks on the North American highways today achieved the same level of efficiency as the trucks in Run on Less, they would save 9.7 billion gallons (36.7 billion litres) of diesel fuel, $US24.3billion ($NZ35.2billion) and 98 million tons (88.9 million tonnes) of CO2 each year. “These results are impressive and show what can be achieved with today’s available technologies, and what happens when you

focus your efforts around getting total engagement from the entire stakeholder value chain,” says NACFE chairman Scott Perry. The seven combinations achieved a cumulative total of 99 days of driving in in the 17 days of the demo, saving 2877 gallons (10,890 litres) of fuel and $US7193. Of the 99 days, the highest daily mpg achieved was 12.8/5.43kms per litre – with three different trucks clocking days over 12.5mpg/5.3kms per litre. The lowest mpg from a truck was 7.1/3.01kms per litre) on one of the days, and the average for the seven trucks’ worst daily fuel use performances throughout the Run was 8.8mpg/3.73kms per litre. The average gross combination weight over the Run was 55,498 pounds/25,173 kilograms, with 31 of the 99 days over 65,000 lb/29,483kg. Wind was monitored along each truck’s route using an online weather service – which showed that it varied between a 6.8mph/10.9km/h average headwind and a 7.6mph/12.2km/h tailwind. During the Run, two hurricanes were active in the US and every driver involved was affected by the bad weather they generated. Average vehicle speed was 54mph/86km/h and elevation gain was also tracked for each truck – one of them climbing 3270 ft/996 metres with 72,960 lbs/33,094kg gross combination weight and experienced an average 2.7mph/4.3km/h headwind and still achieving Truck & Driver | 91


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Above: Although the seven trucks in the Run On Less demo had much in common in their fuel efficiency technologies, no two trucks were identical in their total fuel-saving packages

Left: Sir Richard Branson’s Carbon War Room co-hosted the fuel efficiency demonstration

9.7mpg/4.12kms per litre. Some of the technology on the seven trucks was common to a number of them, but each also had unique fuel-saving measures – demonstrating, the organisers say, “that there are many different combinations of technologies that can achieve high levels of mpg.” The trucks – three Freightliners, two Internationals and two Volvos, all steered by experienced drivers – used commercially available technologies including 6x2 axles, a wide range of trailer and tractor aerodynamic aids, idle shutdown systems, tyre pressure monitoring and management systems, automated transmissions, low viscosity oils, low rolling resistance tyres and more. The 2018 Freightliner Cascadia Aero Xi Sleeper from North Carolina’s Albert Transportation, for instance, is a 6x4 specialising in general freight delivery with a 53ft/16.1m dry van trailer. The Cascadia has a 400-horsepower DD15 engine and Detroit DT12 automated manual transmission and runs Michelin Energy wide tyres with a tyre pressure monitor, adaptive cruise control, an integrated drivetrain, a parking availability app for truck stops and a service that provides electric power to run refrigeration units and appliances at truck stops. Owner/operator Henry Albert, who’s been a truckie for 30 years, even drives in thin-soled shoes as a fuel efficiency aid – on the basis that they give him more feel for the throttle pedal. The combination also has aerodynamic aids from different manufacturers – air-calming skirts and dams, wheel covers, landing-leg shrouds, a trailer tail and nose cone….even a relocation of the number plate to avoid air disturbance. Iowa trucking company Hirschbach – running 950 trucks and

1500 trailers and offering refrigerated, dedicated and specialised services – is a participant in the US Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay programme, which helps companies improve supply-chain sustainability by measuring, benchmarking and improving freight transportation. It has a policy of renewing its trucks after three or four years and put forward a 2016 International ProStar Skyrise Full Sleeper 6x4 for Run On Less. The tractor unit runs a 450hp Cummins ISX 450, with an Eaton AMT, a 2.64 axle ratio and a 53ft reefer. It also runs Michelin wide tyres, tyre pressure monitoring on the tractor and tyre inflation on the trailer, with Bendix Wingman’s adaptive cruise control, collision mitigation and stability control, idling shutdown and an aero package including wheel covers, skirts and shrouding. PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division – the seventh-largest commercial fleet in the US – ran one of its 22,000 vehicles in the demo – a 2018 Volvo VNM Day Cab 4x2 with a 53ft high-cube trailer, a 425hp engine, I-Shift AMT and 2.67 axle ratio. It’s fitted with Bridgestone low rolling resistance tyres, an automatic tyre inflation system, idle shutdown and an aero package including wheel covers, a trailer tail and nose-cone, aero skirts on the trailer… plus vented mudflaps. Frito-Lay buys on the basis of aerodynamic trucks to optimise its fleet – trucks with front bumpers that have lower dams, for instance. Texas and New Mexico-based Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT) is a time-sensitive carrier running a fleet of over 1200 trucks and 5000 trailers throughout North America and Mexico. It was the first fleet to apply skirts to 100% of its trailers and it’s another EPA SmartWay

TED Truck & Driver | 93


programme participant. Its unit on the Run is a 2018 International LT Sleeper, with a 450hp Cummins X15 engine, an Eaton AMT and 2.31 Meritor rear axle on its 6x2 tag axle setup and it pulls a 53ft dry van trailer. Like most of the other Run On Less participants, the MVT Inter has a driver assistance system (in this case the Bendix Wingman Fusion system), Michelin wide tyres and an automatic tyre inflation system and an aero package including a 23-inch tractor-to-trailer gap, skirts, wheel covers, vented mudflaps and a trailer tail. In addition to an idle shutdown system it has solar panels to run the aircon, lights and appliances when the engine’s turned off. The 2016 Volvo VN Sleeper put into the Run by Ohio food-grade specialist Ploger – which has a modest fleet (by US standards) comprising 40 tractor units and 100 trailers – has a 385hp/1450 lb ft D11 engine, a 2.53 drive axle ratio and a 6x2 liftable setup. It runs an extensive aero package of skirts, shrouds, a trailer tail and nose cone. The average age of the trucks in Illinois carrier Nussbaum’s fleet is just 30 months – and for trailers it’s four years. The company also works to cut diesel use by offering its drivers incentives for fuelefficient performance. It’s also been an EPA SmartWay partner since 2008. Its 6x2 2018 Freightliner Cascadia Full Sleeper, pulling a 53ft dry van, has a 405hp DD15 engine, a DT12 AMT and Detroit 2.28 drive axle and a liftable tag. Its suite of fuel efficiency aids runs to 94 | Truck & Driver

predictive cruise control, a full aero package including wheel covers, skirts, shrouds, a trailer tail and a relocated number plate, an idle cutout system, plus a realtime fuel use display in the cab, an event recorder with driver feedback alerts and Michelin Energy tyres and automatic tyre inflation. The seventh participant, US Xpress, is the second-largest privatelyowned truckload carrier in the US, with 7000 tractors and 15,500 trailers. The Tennessee company has twice been named Best Carrier Partner by EPA SmartWay and describes its staff as “conscientious stewards of both public safety and the environment.” It puts a 2018 Freightliner Cascadia Sleeper 6x4 into the Run, pulling a 53 ft dry van and running a 400hp Detroit engine and DT12 AMT, with a 2.28 rear axle ratio. In addition to tyre pressure monitoring and inflation systems it has wheel-end balancing, solar panels to provide power when it’s parked up, insulated curtains, idle shutdown and a full aero package. The fuel economy figures achieved by the Run On Less trucks include fuel burnt while the truck engines were idling. To guarantee fuel use accuracy, fuel-consumption data was read from the CAN bus in each truck – using telematics devices installed on the trucks. As CAN data via telematics is available in near-real time, it can be used for reporting on a specific period, such as one day or one trip. The actual fuel that went into each truck – in seven to 10 fillups – during the three weeks was also tracked.


Aerodynamic aids from many manufacturers feature on the Run On Less combinations, including FlowBelow’s wheel covers and shrouds (top left), V-shaped trailer skirts (left) and a variety of trailer tails (above)

“We have an increased productivity” “Thanks to the Groeneveld automatic lubrication systems we’ve an increased productivity due to less downtime as a result of daily manual greasing. In addition, pin and bushing replacement is virtually eliminated. That significantly reduces maintenance downtime. So, for less costs we have improved uptime and availability of our machines and trucks. And last but not least we’re able to serve our customers in a better way,” Graham Eaton, Mechanical Engineer at Fulton Hogan.*

* Read the full Fulton Hogan testimonial on groeneveld-lubrication-solutions.com

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Truck & Driver | 95

19-10-2017 08:25:40


Above: This Volvo from the huge Frito-Lay fleet has aero aids that even extend to mudflaps that are vented, to arrest spray but reduce airflow disruption Left: North American Council for Freight Efficiency executive director Mike Roeth says Run On Less provides a graphic example of how existing technologies can save fuel

The fuel consumption was calculated by totalling the distance driven by all trucks, above a minimum threshold of 50 miles/80kms, divided by the total fuel they consumed. Factors likely to affect fuel economy, including GCMs (calculated from bills of lading, truck and trailer tare weights and using telematics data), total elevation gain, average vehicle speed and average wind speed were also noted. The amount of fuel saved by the demo trucks was calculated by comparing their fuel consumption to the amount of fuel they would have consumed at the US national average of 6.4mpg. Mike Roeth, NACFE executive director, says that the participants in the Run “reveal a road map for other North American fleets to lower fuel costs and emissions from their equipment.” A full report on Run on Less will be released in the next few months. The organisers say that a goal of Run on Less was “to highlight the effectiveness of the many different technologies, not to identify a specific ‘winning’ combination. Therefore, to minimise any competitiveness and keep certain information proprietary, trucks aren’t identified in the results. 96 | Truck & Driver

Pepsico’s Mike O’Donnell says that Run on Less “demonstrated what can be accomplished when our industry comes together and combines readily-available technologies with experienced drivers who leverage smart driving skills, regardless of road and weather conditions. “Now more than ever, it’s so critical that we improve the fuel economy of our fleets as a way to meet sustainability goals and ultimately improve the bottom line for our respective organisations. “We hosted the Run to demonstrate that, with the right investment in technology and with skilled, ambitious drivers, it is possible to achieve mpg levels far above those of the average fleet. The results should encourage other fleets to invest in fuel efficiency technologies which matter the most for their fleet.” Annie Peter from Shell Lubricants, a sponsor of the Run, says of the results: “It will take collaboration among energy suppliers, lubricants producers and fuel retailers like Shell, vehicle manufacturers, fleet owners, businesses and other organisations to work together to consistently achieve the impressive fuel economy and CO2 reduction results these seven drivers accomplished.”


MAN POWER TGX 26.640 MORE PULLING POWER. MORE STOPPING POWER.

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Above: Mesilla Valley Transportation International LT 6x2 boasts an extensive suite of fuel-saving technologies, including solar panels to power the aircon and other ancillaries when the rig’s parked

Right: Hirschbach International ProStar 6x4 has sculpted skirts and other aero aids including airflow smoothing between the drive wheels...along with many other fuel-saving measures

Shell, for instance, she adds, is “continually striving for more advanced technology, such as our low viscosity lubricants, to help reduce the loss of energy through friction, improve overall engine efficiency, and actively reduce emissions from combustion.” The Carbon War Room, founded in 2009 by Sir Richard Branson and a group of like-minded entrepreneurs, has worked to accelerate the adoption of business solutions that reduce carbon emissions on a huge scale and advance the low-carbon economy. Three years ago it merged with Rocky Mountain Institute, which still works under the CWR brand to promote programmes aiming to overcome market barriers that stop capital from flowing to sustainable solutions….or prevent the uptake of efficiency solutions. Says CWR: “Our vision is a world where market barriers will not prohibit profitable solutions to climate change and where entrepreneurs who are passionate about preserving our planet’s resources are simultaneously tapping into the biggest economic opportunity of our generation.” The NACFE has done a large amount of research on the benefit of fleets adopting 6x2 tractor units – realising a 2.5% fuel reduction, among other benefits. Since a report it did on 6x2s 14 years ago, 6x2 adoption by the North American long-haul fleet has increased only a little, from approximately 2% to 4-5% in 2016. Many fleets, NACFE acknowledges, “still still view them as a niche offering” – with factors contributing to their limited adoption

including low fuel prices, higher tyre wear, driver perception, residual value, and improved efficiency of 6x4 axles. “However, there is reason for optimism with 6x2 technology: Through a combination of best practices and adoption of complementary technologies, fleets have found that 6x2 axles work for their application and are benefitting from the improved fuel consumption. One promising new development is 6x2 tandem axles with liftable pusher axles.” But its purpose in hosting Run On Less was to broaden its focus to all commercially-available technologies – “to demonstrate that, with the right investment in technology and with skilled, ambitious drivers, it is possible to achieve mpg levels far above the average fleet,” says Roeth. “We know that equipping these trucks with the technology costs money…but one thing we’ve learned is in the four to five years NACFE’s been doing this, is while there’s a cost of the technology…..there’s fuel savings, but we’ve found very few times where the total cost of ownership stops there. There’s usually other benefits that will help save money. That total picture is what we try to focus on in our work.” The companies and drivers participating in the Run On Less demo were asked simply “to ‘bring the technologies that you have and would want to buy – don’t get them just to get that extra miles per gallon. Bring what you have as a current spec.’ We believe these technologies pay back because they’ve procured them.” T&D Truck & Driver | 99


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OUT OF AMERICA

International HX tractor unit specced for heavy haul has a 51inch (130cm) sleeper for day rest or the occasional overnight. Interior is very comfortable in the new Driver First style

Story & photos North American correspondent Steve Sturgess

Driver-first Inters impress A

S IT CAME OUT OF ITS SELF-INFLICTED DISASTER over its exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) engines, Navistar said it was embarking on an aggressive new lineup renewal programme that would see a new International model launched every six months. And so it’s proven. First was the model HX, a heavy vocational chassis for the construction industries. Then came the LT, an updated model to replace the long-haul ProStar. Next up was the RH, a regional Class 8 highway hauler configured for urban and short-haul applications.... And finally, the North American Commercial Vehicle Show in Atlanta saw the launch of the HV – a lighter, less

expensive vocational truck intended for municipalities and utility fleets that typically purchase by bid. Also starring in Atlanta was the mildly updated LoneStar, featuring the latest LT dash, door and interior updates… logically, since the LoneStar shares the LT cab. All of these new-era Navistars feature specifications and comfort levels reflected in the new Driver First mantra at Navistar. The reasoning is that in these driver-shortage times, fleets want driver-friendly trucks to attract and to keep drivers. And Navistar really needs to sell these fleets a bunch of trucks. To mark the latest intros, but also to give the trucking Truck & Driver | 101


A WARRANTY JUST AS TOUGH AS OUR TRUCKS.

* This offer is available from participating Freightliner Trucks dealerships on new orders placed from Mercedes-Benz New Zealand Ltd (MBNZ) stock or factory between 15 April 2016 and 31 December 2017. Extended Warranty runs until the earlier of 4 years or 800,000 km from purchase. Extended Warranty is subject to standard terms, conditions and exclusions; and does not extend to the Engine. A separate Engine Warranty is provided by the Engine Manufacturer.


HV 6x4 with A26 power. New, stiffer doors mean better cab sealing, less wind noise. Visibility is improved with pedestal-mount mirrors and the wing window has been removed

press a chance to experience the driver-centric approach of all the new models, 12 trucks are assembled at Navistar’s recently-purchased proving ground in New Carlisle, Indiana – about 90 minutes’ drive east of its corporate headquarters and engineering centre in Chicago. The proving ground was originally built by Studebaker back in the 1920s, then it was acquired by Bendix….then Bosch, for light vehicle development. Ironically, Bosch leased part of the facility to Freightliner, so until that contract ran out, Freightliner and International co-existed with their secret prototypes circling the three-mile (fivekilometre) oval or beating themselves to death on the even larger durability course. For the press event, LT, RH models and a solitary LoneStar are lined up on the oval track with loaded trailers. The lineup consists of two daycab RHs, a day-cab LT, two sleeper LTs and the awesome LoneStar. Four are equipped with the new International 12.4-litre big-bore A26 engine. One of the sleeper LTs and the LoneStar have the Cummins X15, which is proving very popular with LT customers and – at 605 horsepower – at last (!) provides the right sort of power for the premium LoneStar. On the durability course are a pair of HX models – a dumptruck with Cummins X15 power and a tractor set up as a heavy-haul outfit with a 51-inch HiRise sleeper and

a 565hp X15. There are three of the new HVs in various configurations: A 4x2 dump, a 6x4 dump and a 6x6 utility service truck with a big boom bucket and heavy-service body. Completing the lineup is a tiny (by comparison) DuraStar class 7 with a B series Cummins. Our tour starts with the durability course and the vocational trucks. Only the heavy-haul HX is loaded and it proves very capable over the hills and unsurfaced roads of the course. We don’t get into any of the durability test sections such as the offset troughs, pave, block test and its many other challenges. They just don’t seem appropriate. The 565hp X15 pulls as expected, since we’re only loaded to 62,000 pounds/28,120kg. The most impressive feature is the retarding power on the short, steep downgrade. The cab and dash are good too. Most unusual is the single, large, round speedometer/tachometer. It comes from the now-discontinued Caterpillar truck and has proven a popular feature of the HX. The sleeper is large enough for day rest and even the occasional overnighter that heavy haulers may experience. The HX is based on the older, larger aluminum cab of the old 9000 series so offers plenty of room inside. A sloping belt line to the doors and big windscreen mean a more traditional style…but still with decent visibility. On the heavy-hauler, external air cleaners and lots of chrome give Truck & Driver | 103


Above: Top of the International line is the LoneStar. It has finally started to take off as it now gets the Cummins X15. This one has a 605hp rating and an 18-speed Eaton trans

Right: LoneStar gets the new dash in its latest upgrade. Dash is driver’s delight and upgraded trim offerings include wood trim

it the style that these operators like. And with a setback front axle, even at 16,000 lbs/7250kg, it has a decent ride. The HX dumptruck shares most of the same features, though with a 20,000 lb/9070kg set-forward and 46,000 lb/20,865kg rears and no load, it’s decidedly choppy – even keeping off the durability course challenges. But as a comfortable daycab it wouldn’t be a bad place to spend long working days. The three HV models in the all-new lineup show the versatility of the new truck series. The little 4x2, with a Cummins B6.7 at 300hp/223kW, is likely a good utility chassis – offering some style and the steel cab at a good price point. Like all the new-breed Internationals, it has the advantage of the new door design. This is much stiffer than before so there are no issues with the doors gaping away from the seals and the cab interior is really quiet. This is 104 | Truck & Driver

noted on all the steel-cab trucks at the event – the HV, RH and LT and LoneStar. The boom/bucket truck is interesting, showing not just the versatility of the new chassis but also showcasing the availability of the Cummins L9 which becomes the mid-size engine with the demise of the International 466 and 530. In this chassis, the nine-litre Cummins is rated at 370hp/275kW, with 1250 lb ft/1694Nm of torque – plenty for the nature of its utility service. It’s also a handy work truck in 6x6 configuration, with a Fabco 20,000 lb/9070kg single-reduction front driving axle. This truck is heavy and


handles the durability course well, showing that the HV can be a good-riding truck when loaded. The third HV is powered by the new A26 engine. This is a total redo from the earlier MaxxForce 13, which evolved into the N13. Most of the engine structure remains the same and the displacement continues at 12.4 litres, but the head and cooling system are totally revised. This makes for a much cleaner engine. In this HX, the A26 is rated at 475hp/354kW, with 1700 lb ft/2304Nm of peak torque, but the truck isn’t loaded so it fairly leaps up the grades with the Allison six-speed 2500 double overdrive transmission making the driving task easy. On the three-mile oval, the A26-powered RH and LT trucks are loaded and ratings are 400hp and 450hp/298kW and 335kW. These will likely be very popular in linehaul and especially bulk operations, as the A26 is some 600 lbs/272kg lighter than the alternative Cummins X15. It proves quite capable of pulling the loaded trailers at around 65,000 lb/29,483kg GVW and performs well, with the engines mated to Eaton 10-speed automated transmissions. One of the LTs is Cummins powered and, despite the close association between Cummins and Eaton on the Smart Advantage combo, it feels less elegant in its execution than the A26 combo. Clutch engagement is a little choppy with the Cummins and the combo seems to hang on to a gear longer than absolutely necessary, given the huge low-speed torque of the 2017 engines. However, the 605hp X15 in the LoneStar is a treat,

especially with its do-it-yourself 18-speed. On the banked oval track it’s possible to run 55mph/88km/h and the LoneStar is exceptionally comfortable at this speed, or a little higher, in top gear. With minimal rpm and the new cab sealing, it’s passenger-car-quiet. And, with its Hendrickson front suspension, it’s easily the best-riding truck to come my way in a long time. True, a test-track tends to give a nice flat surface and a gentle ride, but the LoneStar just seems to float along. The LTs and RH models also do well, but the shorter wheelbases – especially on the daycabs – give a more lively ride. But they all share the same quietness that should appeal to drivers. Also to like is the new interior, launched on the LT and now common across the steel-cabbed Internationals. Most of the trucks at the track are top-of-the-line spec, with dark cherry accents – and they prove as comfortable as they look. The new interiors fit the new Navistar Driver First mantra. The aim is to make trucks that drivers want to drive – so they stay with the fleets that purchase International vehicles. And, as well as the interiors and driver-friendly dashboards, many of the trucks at the ride ‘n drive are equipped with disc brakes – either on the front axle or all around. This, says Navistar, is also a driver-friendly spec that’s standard on the LT. Penetration of disc brakes has doubled across the board over the last two years, it says. And reflecting the lineup at the test track, AMT penetration has reached 70% of production. While a half-day at a track doesn’t give much opportunity

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Above: New International A26 big-bore engine is a 12.4 litre with SCR aftertreatment. Engine compartment looks busy but way less so than with old EGR system with dual cooling Right: Typical application for the HV could be a utility truck like this 6x6. Smaller 4x2 in background is also an HV, showing the wide range of applications for the latest International chassis

And, given its Volkswagen backing, who knows where International might be in five or 10 years?

108 | Truck & Driver

TD27505

to get comfortable with any one model, it does amply make the point that the International brand is back in business with new trucks and a new engine. If the other new mantra at Navistar – uptime – is delivered, the International brand is a viable choice in a highly competitive environment. And, given its Volkswagen backing, who knows where International might be in five or 10 years? T&D


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Recently Registered www.trt.co.nz The first Volvo in an otherwise allScania fleet, this FH 750 Globetrotter has joined Manawatu’s Glenn Carroll Transport, carting livestock around the North Island. As well as the 750hp Volvo engine, the 8x4 has an I-Shift AMT and RTS2370B single reduction diffs, automatically-operating Bi-xenon headlights, an under-bunk fridge, custom art done by Feilding’s Tony Walton and a new Jackson Enterprises deck and crate, along with a matching five-axle trailer.

Record streak continues T

HE NEW TRUCK MARKET CONTINUED TO BE in record-breaking mode in October – for the eighth straight month. The month itself produced the best October ever for registrations in the overall 4.5 tonnes-plus GVM market, the 439 sales a 3% improvement on the 2014 previous best (and 34% up on the same month in 2016)…. And, unsurprisingly given that the market has set new sales records every month since February, the 4352 registrations for the year at the end of October easily beat the old record — 2014’s 3737 YTD at the same point (by 16%). And it outdid 2016’s 3396 by 28%. While unable to add another record, the trailer market’s 144

registrations for the month amounted to the second-best October tally ever, behind 167 in 2014. Spectacularly, it beat the market’s performance in the same month in 2016 by a whopping 55%. The 1284 YTD total was just nine short of 2014’s record – and 16% up on last year’s 1103. Official New Zealand Transport Agency data, analysed for NZ Truck & Driver by Robin Yates’ Marketing Hand consultancy, shows that, in the overall 4.5t-plus market, longtime leader Isuzu’s streak of 100plus registrations per month came to an end in October….after four months. Yates points out that this still gives Isuzu a monthly average of 100plus for the first 10 months of 2017, and Fuso an average of 81. YTD Truck & Driver | 111


Recently Registered www.trt.co.nz 23,001kg-max GVM 2017

4501kg-max GVM 2017 Brand ISUZU FUSO HINO MERCEDES-BENZ VOLVO DAF UD IVECO KENWORTH MAN SCANIA MACK FREIGHTLINER RAM FIAT HYUNDAI SINOTRUK WESTERN STAR INTERNATIONAL VOLKSWAGEN FOTON CATERPILLAR RENAULT OTHER

Vol 1020 808 552 291 262 227 217 195 190 140 138 55 47 42 33 27 25 23 22 8 6 1 1 22

% 23.4 18.6 12.7 6.7 6.0 5.2 5.0 4.5 4.4 3.2 3.2 1.3 1.1 1.0 0.8 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.2 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.5

Total

4352

100.0

October Vol % 95 21.6 90 20.5 54 12.3 17 3.9 20 4.6 32 7.3 20 4.6 26 5.9 20 4.6 19 4.3 17 3.9 4 0.9 5 1.1 2 0.5 1 0.2 2 0.5 3 0.7 3 0.7 2 0.5 1 0.2 3 0.7 0 0.0 0 0.0 3 0.7 439

Woodford Developments in Christchurch has put this new UD Trucks GW26-420 to work as far afield as Kaikoura – either in front of a two-axle TMC Trailers tipping semi trailer or converting to a rigid, with a Cambridge Welding Services FOB tipping deck. Kevin Gray drives the 6x4, which has a 420hp GH11 engine, Escot-5 AMT and UD diffs. Photo Alix Houmard

2017

2017 Vol 251 98 12 11 5 2 2

% 65.9 25.7 3.1 2.9 1.3 0.5 0.5

Brand ISUZU FUSO HINO UD IVECO MAN MERCEDES-BENZ HYUNDAI DAF FOTON OTHER

Vol 404 198 186 56 20 19 13 6 5 1 14

% 43.8 21.5 20.2 6.1 2.2 2.1 1.4 0.7 0.5 0.1 1.5

Total

922

100.0

2017

381

100.0

Total

October Vol % 32 74.4 8 18.6 1 2.3 2 4.7 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 43

100.0

4501-7500kg GVM 2017 Brand FUSO ISUZU MERCEDES-BENZ HINO IVECO RAM FIAT HYUNDAI VOLKSWAGEN FOTON RENAULT OTHER

Vol 404 292 196 101 101 42 33 20 8 5 1 4

% 33.5 24.2 16.2 8.4 8.4 3.5 2.7 1.7 0.7 0.4 0.1 0.2

Total

1207

100.0

112 | Truck & Driver

October Vol % 36 33.3 28 25.9 10 9.3 13 12.0 12 11.1 2 1.9 1 0.9 2 1.9 1 0.9 3 2.8 0 0.0 0 0.0 108

100.0

% 15.9 13.6 11.3 9.9 9.2 8.3 6.5 5.7 4.2 3.7 2.9 2.9 2.5 1.1 1.1 1.0 0.1 0.1 0.1

Total

1917

100.0

Brand HINO UD FUSO IVECO ISUZU MERCEDES-BENZ MAN SCANIA DAF VOLVO WESTERN STAR SINOTRUK

Vol 63 60 44 19 17 10 7 7 3 2 2 1

% 26.8 25.5 18.7 8.1 7.2 4.3 3.0 3.0 1.3 0.9 0.9 0.4

Total

235

100.0

90

100.0

October Vol % 7 36.8 3 15.8 4 21.1 4 21.1 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 5.3 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 19

100.0

20,501-23,000kg GVM 2017 Brand HINO UD SCANIA SINOTRUK MAN ISUZU DAF FUSO MERCEDES-BENZ OTHER Total

Vol 26 20 6 5 4 3 2 2 1 2

% 36.6 28.2 8.5 7.0 5.6 4.2 2.8 2.8 1.4 2.8

71

100.0

October Vol % 32 14.8 20 9.3 32 14.8 20 9.3 15 6.9 27 12.5 17 7.9 14 6.5 10 4.6 5 2.3 7 3.2 4 1.9 5 2.3 2 0.9 3 1.39 3 1.39 0 0.0 0 0.00 0 0.00 216

100.0

Trailers October Vol % 35 38.9 23 25.6 18 20.0 4 4.4 3 3.3 2 2.2 2 2.2 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 3 3.3

15,001-20,500kg GVM

Brand FIAT MERCEDES-BENZ FORD RENAULT IVECO ISUZU RAM

Vol 304 260 217 190 176 160 125 110 81 71 55 55 47 22 21 19 1 1 2

7501-15,000kg GVM

100.0

3501-4500kg GVM

Brand ISUZU VOLVO DAF KENWORTH HINO FUSO SCANIA MAN UD MERCEDES-BENZ IVECO MACK FREIGHTLINER INTERNATIONAL WESTERN STAR SINOTRUK CATERPILLAR HYUNDAI OTHER

October Vol % 1 16.7 3 50.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 2 33.3 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 6

100.0

Brand PATCHELL FRUEHAUF ROADMASTER DOMETT MTE TRANSPORT TRAILERS TMC MAXICUBE JACKSON TRANSFLEET TES CWS KRAFT EVANS HAMMAR FAIRFAX SCHMITZ CARGO LOHR CHIEFTAIN MILLS-TUI LUSK MAKARANUI ADAMS & CURRIE COWAN MTT TIDD HTS PTE WHITE TANKER BM CLARK LOWES SEC FOTHERINGHAME WARRENS CONVAIR BISON GLASGOW GUY NORRIS IDEAL SERVICES MORGAN TEN4 TEO OTHER

2017 Vol 158 121 95 89 87 82 81 81 50 43 27 25 23 20 18 17 15 14 12 12 11 11 11 8 8 8 7 6 6 6 4 4 4 4 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 93

Total

1284

% 12.3 9.4 7.4 6.9 6.8 6.4 6.3 6.3 3.9 3.3 2.1 1.9 1.8 1.6 1.4 1.3 1.2 1.1 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 7.2

100.0

October Vol % 14 9.7 11 7.6 12 8.3 11 7.6 8 5.6 9 6.3 9 6.3 10 6.9 9 6.3 4 2.8 3 2.1 5 3.5 1 0.7 2 1.4 1 0.7 2 1.4 3 2.1 4 2.8 0 0.0 1 0.7 1 0.7 1 0.7 3 2.1 0 0.0 2 1.4 3 2.1 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 0.7 2 1.4 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 0.7 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 11 7.6

144

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Recently Registered

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Tranzliquid Logistics’ first Kenworth T610 is now in work delivering bulk fuel, with a Tanker Engineering six-axle tanker B-train. The tractor unit has a 600-615hp Cummins X15 engine, an Eaton 20918B transmission, Meritor 46-160 diffs on Airglide 400 suspension and the Bendix Wingman Fusion driver safety assistance system.

This new Volvo FH540 sleeper has gone to work for Auckland’s Shea Transport, running parcel freight between Auckland and Palmerston North. Mark Denett drives the 8x4, which has extras including LED lights all around and a stainless steel toolbox.

114 | Truck & Driver

Rangiora’s EDR Contracting has this new DAF FAT tipper doing earthworks around Canterbury. Iain Ryder drives the 6x4, which has a 510hp PACCAR MX engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual gearbox, 46-160 diffs on air suspension and a Transport Trailers alloy body.


Recently Registered www.trt.co.nz

Dean Moorcroft from Gisborne’s Probush Services has this new Freightliner Argosy 90” sleeper hauling export logs from around the East Coast under contract to Wilson’s. The 8x4 has a 560hp DD15 engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual transmission and 46-160 diffs, Evans logging gear and tows a new five-axle Evans multi trailer. It has a central tyre inflation system, onboard scales, custom stainless skirts and dropvisor, offset rims, an alloy bumper and leather interior. third-placed Hino registered 552 YTD to the end of October (when it sold 54), giving it an average of 55 per month. Mercedes-Benz (291/17) and Volvo (262/20) held onto fourth and fifth places YTD, ahead of DAF, which had a big month with 32 October registrations to push its YTD total to 227 – overtaking UD Trucks (217/20) for sixth. Similarly, Iveco (195/26) overtook Kenworth (190/20) for 8th, while MAN (140/19) completed the top 10, by edging ahead of Scania (138/17). Says Yates: “It used to be rare for anyone outside of the top three or four to exceed 200 units per year in the overall market (4.5t-plus GVM). In the record-breaking 2015 year seven made it…in 2016, only five. In 2017, with two months to go, it looks like at least nine manufacturers will beat that threshold.” In the 3.5t-4.5t GVM crossover segment, Fiat (251/32) increased its lead over Mercedes-Benz (98/8). Ford (12/1) and Renault (11/2) held their places. Fuso (404/36) increased its lead in the 4.5-7.5t segment, ahead of Isuzu (292/28) and Mercedes-Benz (196/10). Iveco (101/12) was caught by Hino (101/13), while Ram (42/2) remained sixth and Fiat (33/1) was seventh. Hyundai (20/2), Volkswagen (8/1) and Foton (5/3) held their places. In the 7.5-15t division, Isuzu (404/35) consolidated its lead over Fuso (198/23), these two followed by Hino (186/18) then – a long way back – UD (56/4), Iveco (20/3), MAN (19/2) and Mercedes-Benz (13/2). Hino (63/7) regained the lead in the 15-20.5t segment from UD (60/3). Fuso (44/4) held third, while Iveco (19/4) overtook Isuzu (17/0) for fourth.

Mercedes-Benz (10/0) remained sixth, while MAN (7/1) gained a place from Scania (7/0). Hino (26/1) continued to lead the 20.5-23t segment YTD, despite being pipped by UD (20/3) for the month. MAN doubled its total to four and moved up to fifth. Isuzu (304/32) extended its YTD lead in the premium 23t to max GVM segment, although DAF (217/32) – third in the YTD standings – matched it in monthly registrations. Volvo (260/20) continued to hold second place YTD. DAF’s PACCAR stablemate Kenworth (190/20) remained fourth, followed by Hino (176/15), Fuso (160/27), Scania (125/17) and MAN (110/14) – the last manufacturer into triple figures. UD (81/10) and Mercedes-Benz (71/5) held their places, while Iveco (55/7) moved up one spot to join Mack (55/4) in 11th. In the trailer market, Patchell continued to open up its lead. No. 1 for the month with 14 registrations, it pushed its YTD sales out to 158 - 37 better than Fruehauf (121/11). Robin Yates says that it now looks unlikely that Fruehauf will be able to challenge the market leader in the last two months of the year, “as Patchell has a history of strong end-of-year sales.” Roadmaster (95/12) continued to eke out a small edge on Domett (89/11), which improved to fourth at the expense of MTE (87/8). Next were Transport Trailers (82/9), TMC (81/9) and Maxi-CUBE (81/10). As Yates points out, any one of the six trailermakers filling YTD places three to eight at the end of October could still take the third spot for the full year. T&D Truck & Driver | 115


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Introducing High Strength High Wear Resistant Steel Bodies Matthew Gillies DDI: 09 215 3282 Mob: 021 879 742 Email: mattgillies@transfleet.co.nz

Michael Eccles DDI: 09 215 3278 Mob: 021 902 370 michaeleccles@transfleet.co.nz

78 McLaughlins Rd, Manukau City, PO Box 76065, Auckland New Zealand


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Cromwell’s 666 Logistics is running this new International 9870 90” Skyroof nationwide, carting general freight. The 6x4 has a 615hp Cummins X15 engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual transmission, Meritor 46,000 lb diffs, a wrapped black Ali Arc bumper, deep dropvisor, painted fuel tanks, twin air intakes, a fridge and upgraded stereo. Blair Pako drives the tractor, which hauls a six-axle B-train.

Gisborne’s Johnny Williams Transport has added this new Volvo FH livestock unit to its operation. The 8x4 has a 700hp engine, I-Shift AMT, RTS2370B single reduction diffs and extras including a fridge. It pulls a Jackson Enterprises five-axle monocoque trailer.

Pan Pac contractors Matt and Daphne Barraclough have put this new Kenworth K200 logger to work around Hawke’s Bay, the East Coast and Central North Island. The 2.3 flat roof sleeper 8x4 has a 612hp Cummins X15 engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual, Meritor RT46-160 diffs on Airglide suspension and Kraft Engineering logging gear, with a matching four-axle multi-bolster trailer. Extras include leather seats, a fridge, a roofmounted aircon unit, custom twin forwardmounted air intakes, a custom headboard, twin exhausts, painted dropvisor and tanks and lots of stainless and lights. “Old-school” painting was done by Darryn Caulfield.

Truck & Driver | 117


Recently Registered www.trt.co.nz

Akaroa Distribution has this new UD Trucks MK11-280 working for Courier Post around Christchurch and as far afield as Timaru and Nelson. The 6x2 curtainsider has a 280hp GH7 engine, a six-speed gearbox, UD diffs on air suspension, a Hale deck and a rear tail-lift. Photo Alix Houmard

Ashburton’s Grant Perkins has taken delivery of this new International 9870 90TS Skyroof 8x4 dropside tipper, running nationwide for Hinds Cartage, hauling bulk and general freight. It has a 615hp Cummins X15 engine, an Eaton UltraShift AMT and Meritor 46,000 lb diffs.

118 | Truck & Driver

TIL Group contractor Kevin Smith is now running this new Kenworth K200 2.8 Aerodyne tractor unit and its six-axle B-train curtainsider, working nationwide. It has a 550hp Cummins engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual gearbox and Meritor 46-160 diffs.


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Taranaki’s Uhlenberg Haulage has put this new Kenworth T409SAR to work, floating between a variety of work – towing bottom dumpers on rural farm work and roading, regularly towing transporters, or tipulators on tipper work…and it’s DG-specced so it can also haul tankers during seasonal peaks in the LPG market. The 6x4 has a Cummins engine, Eaton UltraShift AMT and Meritor 46-160 diffs. Photo Haydan Pitcher

This new Kenworth T409SAR tipper is now in work for Dibble Transport in Te Awamutu. The 6x4 has a 600-615hp Cummins engine, an 18-speed Roadranger manual gearbox and Meritor 46-160 diffs, with full crosslocks, on Airglide suspension. It has a Transport Trailers alloy bin and a matching four-axle trailer, plus a stainless sunvisor and marker lights made by Chris Stanley.

120 | Truck & Driver

Dannevirke’s Buckeridge Transport has added the third Volvo to its nine-truck fleet. The FH 700 8x4 has an I-Shift transmission and RTS2370B diffs, a fridge, a wireless tipper remote and an extended aero kit.


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126 | Truck & Driver

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LOUIE LOUIE AND AND HIS HIS HARD HARD CASE CASE BUGGERS BUGGERS Well Wellknown knownforester foresterand andhunter hunterLance LanceDuncan Duncanretired retiredfrom fromthe theforestry forestryindustry industrythen then sat satdown downand andwrote wroteaabook. book.It’s It’sthe thetale taleof ofhis hislife lifeand andisisfull fullof ofyarns yarnsfrom frommany manyyears years of ofworking workingininforestry forestryand andhunting huntingand andthose thosepeople peoplehe hemet metalong alongthe theway. way. Its Itsfull fullof ofhumour, humour,our ourproof proofreader readerwas wasininstitches stitcheswhen whenshe sheworked workedon onthis this manuscript. manuscript.ItIthasn’t hasn’tbeen beensterilised sterilisedit’s it’swritten writtenas asLance Lancetells tellsititand andanybody anybodywho who knows knowshim himwill willknow knowyou youwill willget getititstraight. straight. IfIfyou youare areeasily easilyoffended offendedthen thenit’s it’sprobably probablynot notfor foryou. you. Get Getyour yourcopy copynow, now,for foraagreat greatread readand andsome somereal realentertaining entertainingyarns. yarns.

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NZ Truck & Driver Dec/Jan 2018  
NZ Truck & Driver Dec/Jan 2018