NZ Truck & Driver March 2024

Page 1


| March 2024

March 2024 $10.90 incl. GST

Issue 276



BIG TEST SHORT... and TALL | FLEET FOCUS Generally Local | FEATURE: Kenworth 100 Pictorial


Cover.indd 1

The Official Magazine of

FLEET FOCUS Generally Local

ISSN 2703-6278


Kenworth 100 Pictorial 16/02/24 1:04 PM

CONTENTS Issue 276 – March 2024




The latest from the world of road transport including… New Zealand’s new end-of-life tyre regulations… A new horsepower king from Volvo… Truck action from the Dakar Rally and NAPA Auto Parts NZ Super Truck Championship… Upcoming highway closures and it’s time to mark the calendar for the 2025 Brisbane Truck Show.


Giti Tyres Big Test Short, But Tall: The Healy Transport/THL 4x4 Mercedes-Benz Arocs 1843 stands tall while a spec option for spreading work includes a shortened wheelbase. We’re in Southland to test the high-tech Arocs in its work environment.


FEATURES: 56 Southpac Trucks Legends Bright Spark: Dennis Sparksman couldn’t wait to leave school. It was the beginning of a journey that has seen Mangonui Haulage become a transport industry powerhouse in the Far North.


Transporting New Zealand Interim Chief Executive Dom Kalasih recognises the brave roadside response of Hall’s Group driver Tony Cook and takes a look at some of the transport and infrastructure changes on the horizon following the change of government.

Teletrac Navman Fleet Focus


REGULARS: 80/ Double Coin Tyres NZ Transport 81 Imaging Awards Recognising NZ’s best-looking trucks… including a giant pull-out poster of this month’s finalist.

A Century in the Making



A Quarter Century of Roads and Reads

No Stopping the Dunedin Truck Show A early downpour couldn’t dampen the enthusiasm at the 2024 O’Reilly’s Towage and Salvage Dunedin Truck Show.

A massive turnout of 765 trucks rumbled into Hamilton’s Mystery Creek to celebrate 100 Years of the Kenworth marque. It’s the largest single marque industry event ever staged in New Zealand.

New Zealand Truck & Driver magazine turns 25 this month. We look back at a very different Kiwi trucking scene in early 1999 and a quarter of a century of evolution in technology and truck sales.



Generally Local: Southland couple Glenn and Kerri Wylie have spent 14 years steadily building Gore Freight & Storage into an 18-truck fleet, while keeping the focus on a general freight service for local rural customers.

Truck Shop New products and services for the road transport industry.

CrediFlex Recently Registered It was a strong start to both new truck and trailer registrations in January, plus the monthly gallery of new rigs on the road.

COLUMNS 83 National Road Carriers Association NRC CEO Justin Tighe-Umbers and NZ Trucking Association CEO Dave Boyce look ahead to the TMS Transport Industry expo in Christchurch next month.



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PRINTING & DISTRIBUTION Printer Bluestar Retail Distribution ARE Direct Publication: New Zealand Truck & Driver is published monthly, except January, by Allied Publications Ltd PO Box 112 062, Penrose, Auckland Contributions: Editorial contributions are welcomed for consideration, but no responsibility is accepted for lost or damaged materials (photographs, graphics, printed material etc). To mail, ensure return (if required), material must be accompanied by a stamped, addressed envelope. It’s suggested that the editor is contacted by fax or email before submitting material. Copyright: Articles in New Zealand Truck & Driver are copyright and may not be reproduced in any form – in whole or part – without permission of the publisher. Opinions expressed in the magazine are not necessarily the opinions of, or endorsed by, the publisher. Truck & Driver | 1

NEWS The Tyrewise regulations come into force March 1 and its collection services for end-of-life tyres will operate from September 1.

Tyrewise scheme March 1 Factbegins sheet for LOOSE TYRE IMPORTERS, RETAILERS AND FITTERS

NEW REGULATIONS TO MANAGE THE DISPOSAL OF has been assessed for a ‘end-of-life’ tyres, which have been 11 years in the making, come into force typical passenger car tyre from March 1. weighing 9.5kg – termed Tyrewise will regulate the tyre supply chain and eliminate opportunities an Equivalent Passenger for profit from the dumping of end-of-life tyres to the detriment of the Unit (EPU). For example, environment. It’s estimated 6.5 million tyres reach their ‘end of life’ each year an average motorbike tyre in New Zealand. is 0.5 EPU and a large A ‘product stewardship’ initiative, Tyrewise shifts the collection cost for truck tyre is 4.2 EPU. end-of-life tyres from the end to the beginning of the tyre life cycle by The fees become introducing levy onpublished almost all new tyres sold in Minimisation New Zealand. Funds from significant for vehicles The government hasa now the Waste (Tyres) levy will provide a free collection service and publicthe collection points. such as 9-axle HPMVs Regulationsthe2023. The regulations are made under Waste Minimisation The levy applies to require tyres (pneumatic solid) used on poweredregulated vehicles with multiple large tyres. Act 2008. The regulations thoseand importing orallselling tyres, and trailers. Tyres for the of bicycles are exempt at this stage. For a heavy goods vehicle whether loose or attached to likes a vehicle, toand actprams in accordance with Tyrewise, Theproduct new legislation was one of the last enactedThe by the outgoing greater than 12t GVM and for tyres on trailers above 10t GVM the fee is the accredited stewardship scheme. aim is to government reduce harm to the in October is not under review from the newend-of-life National-led coalition. $27.93 (+GST) per tyre. environmental and and communities by managing tyres effectively. Bill Prebble is the technical advisor to the Tyrewise working group and is National Road Carriers Policy and Advocacy GM James Smith says the pleased to see the scheme come into force. association went to members last year to see if there were concerns about He says the majority of tyres are now collected by reputable collection the scheme. He reports minimal feedback and that transport operators had services, but there are still cases of tyres being dumped or burned. quickly worked out Tyrewise was largely cost-neutral, with the costs for tyre “The tyre dumps which have been blight on the Kiwi landscape will disposal shifting to the beginning of a tyre life cycle. eventually disappear and the opportunity for profiteering from the dumping Auto Stewardship New Zealand, a not-for-profit charitable trust, will of tyres will be removed,” he says. provide governance for Tyrewise. • Regulations covering the product ofand rate payers • All importers sellers of tyres “There have been significant clean-upstewardship costs for councils Accordingand to Mark Gilbert, Chair (whether of Auto Stewardship New Zealand, tyreswhen were published in September 2023. retailers or fitters) are classed as Liable Parties. illegal tyre dumps have been abandoned.” Tyrewise will reduce the environmental, economic, and societal harm posed Prebble says the scheme will address regional issues as well. by end-of-life tyres that would otherwise be dumped, • All Liable Parties must register with Tyrewise.illegally stockpiled or • Regulations come into effect from 1 March “There have been some remote regions where it hasn’t been viable to have landfilled. 2024. Tyrewise will be fully operational from 1 • Regulated are the all pneumatic and solid tyres a collection service and where tyres are more likely to be dumped. Tyrewise “This tyres will reduce chance of illegal stockpiling and tyre fires which September 2024. for use on motorised vehicles, including will provide a free nationwide collection service for tyre re-sellers and tyre impact negatively on our communities and turnscars, a tyre from being wasted trucks, motorcycles, aircraft and off-road • All importers generators.” and sellers of regulated tyres must into buses, an available resource,” he says. vehicles. act in The accordance with Tyrewise, the accredited Tyrewise levy is paid by tyre importers and will be noted in the “Only around 40% of the tyres which reach their end-of-life in New product stewardship purchase price paid byscheme. the consumer. The levy on tyres fitted to newly Zealand are currently recycled or used in thepassed creation of new products.” • The fees paid must be transparently on imported vehicles will be paid by the owner at the time of first registration. He says part of the Tyrewise will be used to develop domestic markets for • Tyrewise will reduce environmental harm by through the supply chain to the consumer. The regulation requires all participants in the tyre supply chain – from the innovative new products from tyres: “creating jobs and keeping resources in managing end-of-life tyres from collection to • byThe fees on loose tyres as and vehicles not for use point of import to end-of-life – to register with Tyrewise and to abide a use for as long as possible part of a circular economy.” processing. on roads will has be set collected the importer Code of Practice. Tyrewise a target offrom 80% of tyres processed by by its fourth year of Ministry for the Environment. • The current ad hoc disposal charges are replaced Prebble says that truck fleets carrying out in-house tyre-fitting will be operation and 90% by year six. by atermed tyre stewardship fee. the scheme. From September 1 the Tyrewise as “generators” under The on administrative date for Tyrewise • The fees vehicles start registered for on (from roadwhich use fees are levied) is service will alsomust visit registered March 1. Phase two the launch of collection services is from September will be collected bywith Waka Kotahi / New Zealand • Tyrecollection stewardship fees be paid‘‘generators” on all to collect tyres. The fee structure is based loose on a standard $6.65 (excl 1, 2024. Agency For more information Transport (NZTA) asvisit part of the on-road regulated tyres, whether or attached toGST) a charge which

New regulations for tyres

Key Facts


2 | Truck & Driver

costs at first point of registration.

NEWS Work to repair SH1 over the Brynderwyn Hills is set run through till May 12.

Brynderwyns closed for 10 weeks WHEN STATE HIGHWAY 1 ACROSS THE BRYNDERW YN Hills is closed for a $61million repair programme in coming months, the detour route for all HPMV traffic will add 71km to the journey between Auckland and Whangarei. The Brynderwyn closure is scheduled to begin on Monday February 26 and in recent weeks work has been progressing on the various detour routes to be used. Steve Mutton, Director Regional Relationships NZTA says that crews have been preparing SH12 and SH14 for heavy vehicles while working closely with the Northland Transportation Alliance on local detour routes for light vehicles including Cove Road and Paparoa Oakleigh Road. NZTA says high productivity motor vehicles (HPMV) must use SH12 and SH14 (via Dargaville), which is also the suggested detour route for heavy vehicles. Shorter, local detour routes via Cove Road or Paparoa Oakleigh Road are recommended for light vehicles. “We recognise these detours will take longer, especially for freight, which is why we will be working as quickly as possible to carry out this important

work,” Mutton says. “We encourage people to use it as an opportunity to explore Northland and have an adventure while travelling along the scenic routes.” SH1 Brynderwyn Hills will be closed from 12:01am Monday 26 February until 11:59pm Wednesday 27 March, opening for six days over the Easter period from 12:01am 28 March to 11:59pm 2 April. The road will then close again at 12:01am on Wednesday 3 April until 11:59pm Sunday 12 May to complete the remaining work that requires a full closure. Work will be done as quickly as possible. Ahead of the road closure on Monday 26 February, there will be some night works in the Brynderwyn Hills. SH1 is still open but will operate under stop/go traffic management. NZTA estimates the HPMV and recommended heavy vehicle detour route increases the journey from Auckland to Whangarei from 156km to 227km. The estimated journey time (for cars) increases from 2h 06min to 3h 03min. The Cove Rd detour is not suitable for truck and trailer units and the Paparoa Oakleigh Rd detour is also the suggested route for light vehicles

Cummins appoints new Asia Pacific leader SEAN MCLEAN, THE RECENTLY appointed Director and General Manager for On-highway business at Cummins Asia Pacific, was among the overseas visitors at the huge Kenworth 100 event near Hamilton in earlyFebruary. Melbourne-based McLean took over the role in December last year and spent five days in New Zealand around the KW100 celebrations meeting with staff and customers. He told New Zealand Truck & Driver that Cummins’ main priority for the New Zealand market during 2024 will be finalising the service and support structure ahead of the full scale introduction of the company’s Euro 6 product range. McLean brings over 30 years of commercial and technical experience to the role, stemming from industrial and automotive powertrain, and equipment markets.

McLean’s history with Cummins stretches back to 1993. He supported on- and offhighway markets in application engineering and held business leadership roles within the South Pacific region. As General Manager for Marketing and On-highway products, McLean was also heavily engaged in the development and release of the SCR X15 engine platform. Prior his return to Cummins, McLean fulfilled several roles with Penske Australia & New Zealand. As director of the On-highway business, McLean will be responsible for the Asia Pacific region including Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and South East Asia. He will join Cummins Asia Pacific’s Leadership Team as well as the Engine Business Unit global truck team. “I am thrilled to lead such a capable and dedicated on-highway team and continue our rich history in driving innovation and excellence

for our OEM partners and On-Highway customers across Asia Pacific,” says McLean. “Together, we will navigate the road to a decarbonised future, fuelled by over a hundred years of experience. Our journey continues, and I am excited to be a part of it.”



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Volvo’s new 17-litre engine with up to 780hp takes it to the top of the horsepower race.

Advantage Volvo in HP battle BRAGGING RIGHTS IN THE HORSEPOWER STAKES will soon switch back to Volvo Trucks with the introduction of a new engine for its iconic FH16 model. The new 17-litre engine develops up to 780hp with up to 3800Nm of torque – besting arch-rival Scania’s 770hp V8 flagship models. The 780hp engine is being joined by 600hp/3000Nm and 700hp/3400Nm variants with the higher power and torque levels translating to faster engine response, better driveability, maximum productivity and improved fuel efficiency. “I’m proud to present our new engine. It really is a masterpiece and the result of world-class engineering,” says Marcos Weingaertner, Product Manager at Volvo Trucks. “The 780 version is the strongest engine in the industry. When climbing steep grades on a road with maximum loads, you don’t want to get stuck with too little torque and power. That is why we have focused all our efforts on making the D17 engine very powerful, reliable and responsive. For our customers, this translates into getting the job done faster with improved fuel efficiency.” Among the design features of the D17 engine is a single efficient turbocharger that boosts engine responsiveness and improves the driving experience. Volvo’s innovative patented wave piston design optimises combustion and reduces emissions, while the new injection system ensures the best fuel economy, and the increased peak cylinder pressure enables high power output. The engine brake power across the entire speed range has been greatly improved with outstanding engine response. This enables fast gearshifts and results in less wear and tear on the brake pads and disc brakes, while being more efficient going downhill. The new D17 engine is certified to run on HVO (Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil) in all power ratings. The 700hp version is also certified to run on 100% biodiesel (B100). The gearbox has been updated to handle up to 3800 Nm, and internal gearbox efficiency has been further improved on the 3000 Nm and 3400 Nm versions. “I’m confident that customers and drivers will appreciate the higher

engine brake power as well as the ability to run on HVO and biodiesel. The D17 is a fabulous engine for a fabulous truck, and all our customers who rely on the Volvo FH16 in their daily work will now have an even more powerful tool to help them,” says Weingaertner. Following the global announcement of the D17, Volvo Australia confirmed the 17-litre engine will be available in the FH model from mid2024. However, power ratings for `down under’ are yet to be confirmed. All engines are available with 13- and 14-speed Crawler and Ultra-Low Crawler I-Shift AMT transmissions as well as the traditional 12-speed. The new FH16 600 will also benefit from the option of a new low-drag I-Shift variant for highway applications. Continued on Page 6

New 17-litre engine features a single turbocharger and a range of efficiency improvements. Truck & Driver | 5


Upgrades to the FH 16 include new aerodynamic improvements.

From Page 5 Volvo’s I-See technology has also been refined to save energy and carbon emissions, using a cloud based topographic map to optimise driving and enabling more driving time in cruise control mode that can both save energy and give more relaxed driving. Updated brakes with Volvo patented drag-free brake discs, pads, and hubs, improving the braking capacity, reducing energy consumption and emissions. Alongside the D17 engine announcement, Volvo Truck is also showcasing a range of aerodynamic and safety updates to the FH and FM models. Both cabs have received significant aerodynamic improvements; however, the most noticeable feature is the addition of the optional Camera Monitoring System (CMS) which replaces the traditional left and right mirror assembly. CMS gives a wider field of view than a standard

glass mirror and is able to shift that view accordingly as an articulated combination negotiates turns and intersections. An additional outcome is the aerodynamic and efficiency gains of not having mirror housings on the side of the cab. The A-pillar mounted CMS screens can also be activated remotely from the sleeper for additional security while the driver is resting. Inside the FH benefits from a revised audio system as well as interior styling and branding updates. As well as the new flagship 17-litre engine platform, the FH range has also expanded with the addition of an “extended front” variant dubbed the FH-Aero available for the European market. Following the recent relaxation of European length regulations, an additional 240mm has been added to the front air dam of the FH cab, extending the front to improve the drag co-efficient.

More power for the bulldogs too? ON THE SAME DAY AS VOLVO MADE THE GLOBAL announcement for it’s the new 17-litre premium engine platform, a short promo video appeared on the Mack Trucks Australia Facebook page. Titled `Something big is coming’ and with the teaser line “we can’t torque too much” the video previews that Mack’s icon models will be “reimagined” with a June 2024 set date for the official release. The video has since been posted on the Mack Trucks New Zealand page. So, could the Mack model range also get the new 17-litre in-line sixcylinder? Volvo has already confirmed the FH model range will be built in Australia with the D17 from mid-2024 but says power output ratings for `down under’ are yet to be confirmed. They are unlikely to be greatly different to the 780hp and 3800Nm levels announced for Europe. Volvo and Mack models are built at the Wacol facility in Queensland. Another possibility is a Mack performance upgrade based on the existing 750hp version of the D16K engine. Until now the 16-litre – which Mack calls the MP10 – with 685hp output has been the bulldog with the biggest bite. 6 | Truck & Driver

Mack has been teasing a mid-2024 performance upgrade.


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The winning MM Technology Iveco and winning crew (left to right) navigator Frantisek Tomasek, driver Martin Macik Jr, and mechanic David Svanda.

Big Czechs for the victory WITH THE RUSSIANS AGAIN SIDELINED FROM THE contest, the truck division of the Dakar Rally continues to be a duel for honours between Dutch and the Czech teams. This year’s 46th edition of the world’s toughest rally raid through the dunes, canyons and mountains of Saudi Arabia saw the Czech teams in command. The MM Technology team of Martin Macik Jr secured the victory after 12 stages of competition with rival Czech Republic squad Praga Racing finishing runner-up. The MM Technology squad builds its own race trucks which are an evolution of the highly successful Iveco Power Star using a 1000hp engine based on Iveco Cursor 13 hardware. The winning MM Technology team is run by Martin Macik Sr and the winning crew comprised driver Martin Macik Jr, navigator Frantisek Tomasek and mechanic David Svanda. The bright orange truck led home another Czech trio of Ales Loprais, Jaroslav Valtr, and Jiri Stross in a Praga V4S DKR. It was the first Czech win in the Dakar Rally for 23 years and was the result of a controlled drive by Macik and his crew. They made a conservative start with a sixth place in the short Prologue stage and seventh in the

opening stage and then avoided any major incidents or delays during the rally. After the steady start to the 5000km event, Macik finished in third placing in the second stage in the dunes and began a climb up the leader board. The marathon third stage, which allowed only two hours of service time, saw the MM Technology team setting a strong pace and climbing into second spot behind early leader and 2023 winner Janus Van Kasteren. But stage four provided a setback for the MM Technology team who were assessed a 30-minute penalty for failing to pass two waypoints. A new element of the 2024 event was the two-day Chrono48 stage taking the competitors to the desert in the Empty Quarter area, where they had to drive over 500km across challenging terrain and sand dunes, during which they had to pass as many bivouacs located along the route as possible in time. If they arrived after the time limit, the bivouac closed, and they could not continue. The teams also had no mechanics available and had to refuel in one of the bivouacs. Macik excelled on this demanding test and completed Chrono48 with a lead of almost two hours over Loprais. Continued on Page 10

The 2024 event covered 5000km in the dunes and mountains of Saudi Arabia. Truck & Driver | 9


Left: A Tatra bounces through the dunes.

Right: 2023 winner Janus van Kasteren finished third in his Team De Rooy Iveco.

From Page 9 “The special stage was definitely a success. Racing-wise it was something different again and we liked it, but it’s true that it was very challenging. It was very demanding for both people and machinery. This is also evidenced by the fact that only nine trucks finished the whole Chrono48,” says Macik. After a mid-rally rest day in Riyadh, the terrain gradually changed to rocks and boulders with occasional plateaus. Machinery was taking a beating across all the categories and Macik suffered a damaged tyre and a broken windshield but continued to build his lead. The margin proved useful as in the short final stage the leaders lost time with a damaged tyre and finished fourth. However, this did not threaten their overall victory, as they maintained the lead of almost two hours. The Praga team were 1h 54m behind in second place with a wide margin over the Eurol Rallysport Iveco Power Star of Mitchel van den Brink, Moises Torrallardona and Jarno Van De Pol. The best of the Dutch Team De Rooy drivers were Janus van Kasteren and Michiel Becx in fourth and fifth driving Iveco Power Stars. There were big celebrations for Hino Team Sugawara with the Japanese squad steadily climbing the order to finish sixth overall and take the class win for smaller engine trucks in its 600 Series model. Following a late rule change the Hino team decided not to run the truck with its hybrid drive system, a move that saved 400kg and reduced load on the drivetrain.

Left: Team Hino Sugawara finished sixth in the Hino 600.

2024 Dakar Rally (Truck category)


1 Martin Macik Frantisek Tomasek, David Svanda (Czech Republic) MM Technology Iveco Power Star, 54h 34m 48s. 2 Ales Loprais, Jaroslav Valtr Jr, Jiri Stross (Czech Republic) Instaforex Loprais Praga V4S DKR, + 1h 54m 39s. 3 Mitchel van den Brink (Netherlands), Moises Torrallardona (Spain), Jarno van de Pol (Netherlands) Eurol Rallysport Iveco Power Star, +4h 29m 26s 4 Janus Van Kasteren (Netherlands), Darek Rodewald (Poland), Marcel Snijders (Netherlands) Boss Machinery Team De Rooy Iveco Power Star, + 5h 22m 04s 5 Michiel Becx, Wulfert van Ginkel, Edwin Kuijpers (Netherlands) Becx Competition Team De Rooy Iveco Power Star, +11h 34m 32s 6 Teruhito Sugawara, Hirokazu Somemiya, Yuji Mochizuki (Japan) Hino Team Sugawara Hino 600, +17h 22m 54s

Right: The Praga team finished second with Ales Loprais making a Czech Republic 1-2.

10 | Truck & Driver

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In search of Kiwi trucking history

The lost photo albums are rough but are Kiwi trucking history treasure.

THE FAMILY OF THE LATE RON WOOD IS HOPING TO BE REUNITED with lost photograph albums which document the truck painting history of Ron Wood Panelbeaters. Throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s, Ron Wood Panelbeaters of Palmerston North crafted the look of most of the new Mack, Volvo and Kenworth trucks on New Zealand roads. The trucks themselves had been built nearby in Palmerston North – the Kenworths at Dalhoff & King and the Macks and Volvos by Motor Truck Distributors. Each truck was photographed and added to a series of photo albums that became a valuable record of the trucks which came out of the paint shop. “Sometime after Grandad passed away, Nana loaned the collection to a visitor looking for some pictures of his own trucks,” says Greg Wood. “Unfortunately – and quite possibly with no ill intent – they were never returned. “We would love to get them back – or just borrow them – just so we can scan the pictures. If anyone has seen these or know where they might be, we would be forever grateful. “The albums were actually pretty rough (as were some of the pictures) – cheap plastic `seventies ring binders in bright colours like orange and blue. And covered with overspray from the paint shop,” Greg says. The album pictured is the lone surviving example the family still has. Any information about the possible whereabouts of the albums can be sent to Greg Wood, 021 765-768 or

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WORKSHOP EQUIPMENT MAHA New Zealand 0800 624 269 Technical Sales Manager Mike Uganecz 027 278 1300 Managing Director Mick Lauster +61 419 587 210

The 2023 Brisbane Truck Show drew a record attendance.

Brisbane Truck Show dates confirmed THE NEXT BRISBANE TRUCK SHOW WILL RUN FROM May 15-18, 2025, with organisers saying the event promises to be even bigger and better than the record-setting 2023 event. The biennial show, billed as the largest truck show in the southern hemisphere, bounced back from a Covid-19 affected 2021 edition to achieve an attendance of 42,855 across the four-day event. It was a 15% increase over the best previous show according to the Heavy Vehicle Industry Association (HVIA). HVIA Chief Executive Officer Todd Hacking says the HVIA team is committed to staging another world-class show at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre (BCEC) in 2025 where more than 30,000sqm of exhibition space will showcase the latest trucks, trailers, technologies, parts and accessories. “We are already well advanced on opportunities to grow and improve in 2025, and we will consult with all stakeholders as part of our review process and strategic planning for next year’s show,” he says.

“What started back in 1968 as an event to connect members with their customers has become much more than that. “There are so many events that run alongside the Truck Show now, that make it a compelling opportunity for everyone to get together in Brisbane. And this evolution will continue in 2025 – plus some new exciting additions we can’t wait to reveal in due course,” Hacking says. As well as the Southern Hemisphere’s largest display of the latest trucks, trailers, technologies, and parts and accessories, the 2025 Brisbane Truck Show will again encompass a week-long festival of all things trucking under the Australian Heavy Vehicle Industry Week umbrella, with events and activities extending beyond the BCEC into the nearby South Bank Parklands and beyond. These include the Heavy Equipment and Machinery Show at the Brisbane Showgrounds, held in conjunction with the Civil Contractors Federation Queensland, and the Heritage Truck Show staged at the Rocklea Showgrounds in association with the Heritage Truck Association.

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Scholarships to encourage young talent THE NZ TRUCKING ASSOCIATION (NTA) AND National Road Carriers Association (NRC) have launched the TMS Event Scholarship to support attendance by young industry talent at the TMS Teletrac Navman Technology | Maintenance | Safety Conference & Exhibition in Christchurch on March 13-14. “We are encouraging companies to nominate a staff member who might benefit from this scholarship opportunity and encourage you to apply,” says David Boyce, CEO NTA. “Not only does the scholarship help cover the costs associated with attending the event, but your support is a great way to show you appreciate your team. It demonstrates a tangible willingness to invest in their development and shows, are an employer, you are committed to helping them develop and succeed,” The TMS Event Scholarship is available to top apprentices or technicians,


National Road Carriers CEO Justin Tighe-Umbers.

H&S representatives, engineers, dispatch representatives, and more. The key requirement is they are relatively new to the industry, or a promising apprentice, a key employee that has shown a desire to further themselves or a team member that would simply benefit from being exposed to everything the event has on offer. “The TMS Teletrac Navman Technology | Maintenance | Safety Conference & Exhibition is a great way to showcase the industry to young talent, so we want to provide an opportunity for companies to bring their up-and-coming talent to the event,” says Justin Tighe-Umbers CEO NRC. FREE 2-day TMS Event Scholarship delegate passes are limited, with only 25 available, and are valued at $299 +GST. Each sponsored attendee must attend the two days with a paid delegate from the same company. Apply to:

NZI Rest Zones set for March THE FIRST OF THE 2024 NZI Truckie Rest Zone events are planned for the Picton and Wellington Interislander terminals in early March. A Picton event on Tuesday March 5 is followed by Wellington rest zones the following two days (Wednesday March 6 and Thursday March 7). The NZI Truckie Rest Zones are a community collaboration, and part of NZI’s Fleet Fit initiative, to raise awareness about driver fatigue - a major cause of road accidents. The NZI team will be supporting truckies to recharge and refresh before the next leg of their journey with complimentary hot food off the BBQ, barista coffees, and fresh fruit, among other healthy snacks. All truckies booked in with Interislander are welcome to grab a free bite to eat and drink, take part in a quick health check and chat to the team of fleet risk experts about managing driver fatigue. Proudly supported by Interislander, Hato Hone St John and Wellington Free

Ambulance, the NZI Rest Zone gives truck drivers the opportunity to learn more about

want to make sure all truckies get home safely to their whānau.

The NZI Truckie Rest Zones raise awareness about driver fatigue – a major cause of road accidents. the issue of fatigue from professionals, who Truck & Driver | 15


Little back in front Alex Little leading the pack at Timaru on his way back to the championship points lead. Photo: Euan Cameron DEFENDING CHAMPION ALEX LITTLE (HUTT VALLEY) has returned to the top of the NAPA Auto Parts NZ Super Truck Racing leader board following the second round at Timaru’s Levels International Raceway. Pole position in qualifying, two race wins and a second place in the final reverse grid race saw Little achieve a near-perfect weekend, and he now holds a 14-point lead over Shane Gray (Hutt Valley) in the 2023-24 title race. Opening round winner and former series leader Dave West (Pukekohe) is now third, but only two points behind Gray. The Super Trucks were the main drawcard at the Trust Aoraki Thunder Down Under meeting which saw a strong crowd on the embankments at the Levels circuit over the January 27-28 weekend. There were nine trucks in attendance for the second round of the series, one more than the Manfeild series opener with the addition of Tony Brand in his quick Bedford. Alex Little put the 1NZ Freightliner on pole position with a 1m 19.077s qualifying lap ahead of team-mate Brent Collins (Pareora), Gray and series Connor Etting (Volvo) races side-by-side with Troy Etting (Kenworth). Photo: Terry Marshall

16 | Truck & Driver

leader West. Collins however was handed a three position grid penalty for causing a red flag during qualifying. Race one was straightforward for Little with a lights-to-flag run at the front to win by 8.7secs from Gray. Collins worked his way forward to third ahead of West, Brand and the Scania of Ron Salter (Auckland) who had missed qualifying. Things heated up a little on Saturday afternoon for the reverse grid race two with Little taking six laps to work his way from last into the lead. He was the fourth leader of the 8-lapper with Marc King (International), Troy Etting (Kenworth) and West also taking turns in front. Collins led Little through the traffic for the first five laps, getting to second by lap four. Little won by 6.9secs from Collins followed home by West, Gray and the duelling yellow machines of Troy and Connor Etting. Race three was a Sunday morning contest using the split reverse handicap format. Ron Salter led for seven laps with Brand his nearest challenger. Gray hit the front on lap seven chased by Little and at the finish the winning margin for Gray was a mere 0.822secs. Salter held on for third ahead of Collins and Brand. The Sunday afternoon Flying Farwell with a separate cast of drivers in the trucks had a boost with the return of former champion and Timaru local John Hepburn, stepping into Gray’s Kenworth. He was the pace setter with a notable 1m 20.055s qualifying time putting him 1.7secs clear of Malcolm Little. Jason Lincoln in the Ezy Moves Kenworth was the early leader, but Hepburn was on the move and hit the front on lap four to lead home Ricky West and Ash Hey (in King’s International). West now leads Malcolm Little by five points in the `co-driver’ series point standings. The next outing for the NAPA Auto Parts NZ Super Truck Championship is at Southland’s Teretonga Park on March 16-17 with round four at Ruapuna (Christchurch) the following weekend. Manfeild hosts the championship finale on April 6-7.

NEWS 2023-24 NAPA Auto Parts NZ Super Truck championship (standings after round 2) 1 Alex Little (Freightliner) 103 pts 2 Shane Gray (Kenworth) 89 pts 3 Dave West (Freightliner) 87 pts 4 Brent Collins (Freightliner) 75 pts 5 Ron Salter (Scania) 71 pts 6 Connor Etting (Volvo) 62 pts 7 Marc King (International) 57 pts 8 Troy Etting (Kenworth) 49 pts 9 Tony Brand (Bedford) 34 pts Flying Farewell Series 1 Ricky West (Freightliner) 50 points 2 Malcolm Little (Freightliner) 45 pts 3 Ash Hey (International) 39 pts 4 Jason Lincoln (Kenworth) 33 pts 5= Garry Price (Scania) 32 pts 5= John Hepburn (Kenworth) 32pts 7 Keith Wilson (Volvo) 26 pts 8 Peter Bartlett (Freightliner) 18 pts

Shane Gray (Kenworth) is second in championship trailing Alex Little by 14 points. Photo: Terry Marshall

9 Shane Gray (Kenworth) 16 pts 10 Craig Mason (Bedford) 15 pts

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Truck & Driver | 17


The Volvo FM Electric Low Entry is designed for work in city environments.

Volvo’s new urban electric model

VOLVO ALREADY HAS SEVEN different truck models offering battery electric powertrains but it has just launched its first-ever truck model developed solely with electric drive. The new FM Low Entry offers the capacity for heavy loads and excellent visibility for the driver, for safe and efficient driving in city areas. As more and more cities aim to lower emission levels, demand is rapidly rising for zero-exhaust emission trucks that can meet these requirements. The Volvo FM Low Entry is specifically developed to handle a wide variety of transport assignments in city areas. “This zero-emission truck is a great addition to our electric range, perfectly suited for city transports and designed with the driver in mind. It’s powerful, yet smooth to drive and easy to

manoeuvre. The new Volvo FM Low Entry is perfectly in line with our ambitions to expand our electric offer, enabling even more customers to reduce their carbon emissions,” says Roger Alm, President Volvo Trucks. The low driving position offers the driver excellent visibility and control of the surroundings and also earns the FM Low Entry a five-star rating in the Direct Vision standard that rates heavy vehicles operating in London and comes into effect in the fourth quarter of 2024. The new truck is based on Volvo’s well-known FM model with the spacious cab lowered and moved forward. A low instep and flat floor makes it easy to enter and exit the truck and creates an ergonomic working environment for drivers in busy city locations and meets the specific requirements of transportation tasks, such as waste management, distribution and construction. The new FM Low Entry will initially be sold in Europe including Turkey and South Korea with sales starting in the first quarter of 2024, and production starting in the second quarter of 2024. The FM Low Entry will be offered in 4x2, 6x2, 8x2 and 8x4 axle configurations across

a range of GVM ratings from 19-32 tonnes. Wheelbase options range from 3900-6000mm. With four batteries providing 360kWh storage and a 330kW electric motor, the new model has a claimed range of up to 200km depending on weight, driving cycle and topography. Charging options include 250kW (DC) and 43kW (AC). Other features include the Volvo Dynamic Steering system for effortless steering and reduced vibrations. The truck is also available with Volvo’s new advanced Camera Monitor System. Two heights are available: Sleeper cab (1575 mm) and Extended/High sleeper (1945 mm) while three seat options include Driver + 0, 1 or 3 passengers. With three passenger seats placed at the back of the cab, they are not in the view of the driver which minimises blind spots and contributes to excellent visibility. With this new all-electric city truck, Volvo now has a total of eight electric truck models in its range. In 2019 Volvo Trucks became the first global manufacturer to start series production of heavy electric trucks, and the company is aiming for 50% of global sales of new Volvo trucks to be electric in 2030.

The FM Low Entry will be offered in 4x2, 6x2, 8x2 and 8x4 axle configurations with wheelbase options from 3900-6000mm.

18 | Truck & Driver

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Overnight closures for SH29 works A SERIES OF NIGHT TIME closures for State Highway 29 Kaimai Range are planned over coming months, beginning in the last week of February and stretching through till mid- July. Four separate periods of four- and five-night closures are planned so essential maintenance can be done in a safe and efficient manner. Previously, NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi (NZTA) has implemented single-

direction closures to allow traffic to flow, primarily based on freight industry movements to and from the Port of Tauranga. However, following engagement with the Port, freight operators and emergency service providers, NZTA has confirmed that a series of full road closures will be utilised to deliver maintenance in a more effective manner. SH29 is a critical route, providing the key link between the country’s largest port and the

Kaimai Range night closures Sunday 25 to Thursday 29 February, 8pm to 4:30am each night Sunday 17 to Thursday 21 March, 8pm to 3:30am each night Sunday 19 to Wednesday 22 May, 8pm to 3:30am each night Sunday 14 to Wednesday 17 July, 8pm to 3:30am each night






‘Golden Triangle’, says Roger Brady, NZTA’s Acting Regional Manager Maintenance and Operations. “Around 14,000 vehicles use this road every day, including several thousand heavy vehicles. It is critical that we are able to maintain SH29 to ensure the route is safe and accessible for all road users. “We’ve collaborated with freight operators and roading contractors to confirm days and times that work best for everybody. By locking in a schedule, regular road users including freight operators, can make plans in advance to minimise the disruption to themselves and their customers.” The detours for this closure are significant and will add considerable time to journeys. People are encouraged to check the NZTA Journey Planner and allow extra time for their journey, or if possible, delay travel over SH29 on these nights. “This is a new way of working for preventative maintenance and road renewals across the Waikato and Bay of Plenty region. If successful we will look to use this approach in other areas across our network,” says Mr Brady. “We’d like to thank our stakeholders and partners for working with us on this. While disruptive in the short term, everyone will enjoy the benefits of having a more reliable and safer route over the Kaimai Range.” The planned timetable for works is current as at the time of printing. Closures may be rescheduled in the event of bad weather.

Planned SH29 closure times February: Sunday 25 – Thursday 29 (5 nights) 8pm-4.30am March: Sunday 17 – Thursday 21 (5 nights) 8pm-3.30am May: Sunday 19 – Wednesday 22 (4 nights) 8pm-3.30am

Key Closure

July: Sunday 14- Wednesday 17 (4 nights) 8pm- 3.30am

Main detour via Rotorua

Alternative routes

Alternative detour via Waihī

• South: all vehicles: SH28, SH5, SH30, SH33, SH2 via Rotorua

Alternative detour via Rotorua for light vehicles only


24-SH-021 SH29 Kaimai Range detour map v1

20 | Truck & Driver

• South: light vehicles: SH28, SH5, SH36 via Rotorua • North: SH24, SH27, SH26, SH2 via Karangahake Gorge







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Southern Spreader: Mercedes-Benz Arocs 1843 is the newest addition to the Healy Transport/ THL fleet working from Lumsden.

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TALL Story Colin Smith Photos Gerald Shacklock

Truck & Driver | 23

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Along with its prowess in the paddocks, the Arocs has the power to work at 40 tonnes on the highway.

E’VE BEEN OUT IN THE PADDOCKS BEFORE WITH A FIFTH generation Mercedes-Benz Arocs spreader. But the spreading game is constantly evolving and there are always regional preferences and new specifications to be put to the test. The Lumsden depot of Healy Transport/THL is home to three Mercedes-Benz spreaders and a Volvo FH bulk unit. The newest of the spreader trio is this 2022 Arocs 1843 4x4 Compact Space Cab, named `Blaze’ and finished in the company’s bold red and blue colours. The truck was ordered pre-Covid, arrived in early 2022 and when Winton-based McMaster Engineering had completed the bin build it was October 2022 when it joined its three-point star stablemates – a 2017 Actros 1836 and 2013 Axor 1833 – in the field. The availability of some new specification options, Lance Healy’s experience with the company’s existing Benz duo and the conditions encountered in rural Southland led to some specific equipment choices for the new Arocs. The significant choices made for the new unit include a shorter wheelbase and up-speccing to the optional 9.0t front axle rating, a decision which has overcome steering issues associated with the commonly fitted new style 7.5t axle. The three Lumsden-based spreaders go to work in a wide variety of conditions from flat and undulating terrain around Lumsden and Mossburn into some steeper ground near Five Rivers and as far north as Garston, about 65km away. “Mercedes has a good name for robustness. We’ve had a good run out of them, and they are pretty hard to break,” says Lance about the company’s brand choice.

“And we’ve had excellent after-sales support from Tristan Duffell at Cable-Price in Invercargill.” McMaster Engineering spreading gear built in nearby Winton is common across all three of Lance’s Benzes: “We’ve made subtle little changes with each new one. McMasters are really good to work with – they listen to your input,” says Lance. “They’ve got a good set-up in Winton, and they’ve got their finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the spreading business.” There’s no shortage of Southland spreading experience to back-up Lance’s comments. “I’ve been spreading in this area for 21 years and I learned it from my father Brian. I grew up in the passenger seat beside him,” Lance says. “I’ve got two boys who are nine and 11 and they’re learning the ropes now. They’ve got the truck addiction already and they’ll be the third generation.” Lance explains the thinking behind the 9t front axle and shortened wheelbase choices for the Arocs. “The 9t axle has four leaf springs instead of three and a steering ram. It’s a bit sturdier and a bit heavier than the 7.5t but there’s been an issue with the amount of steering kickback with the lighter axle. We got the bigger axle to overcome that issue.” The shorter 3600mm wheelbase [compared to standard 3900m] means more chassis overhang (increased to 1500mm) and it effectively moves the bin further back on the chassis. “We ticked the box on it because the manoeuvrability is better and with more overhang the traction is also a bit better as well,” Lance says. Truck & Driver | 25

In Southland the gravel roads are never far from the highways and are part of the everyday working environment for the Arocs.

“You notice the difference in the soft going because it unloads about 500kg off the front axle and makes it more nimble.” The Arocs and the 3-axle trailer MD Engineering trailer with McMaster spreader gear (delivered eight months ago) can work at up to 40 tonnes on the highway, the Arocs carrying 5.3t of product on the truck and the trailer can carry up to 17.3 tonnes. “This truck works from down near Dipton and up towards Garston so it’s a pretty wide area and it needs to be versatile. We’re spreading on dairy farms, sheep and beef, and crops,” Lance says. 26 | Truck & Driver

Among the other Healy Transport/THL spec preferences are changes to the wheel diameters, a 16-speed G280-16 PowerShift3 transmission and details including MirrorCam and upgraded seats. “We went for 22.5-inch wheels on the front and 20-inch on the back to save weight,” says Lance. “That saves 230kg versus a bigger tyre and wheel on the back while the alloys on the trailer save another 230kg. That’s the best part of half-a-tonne we can turn into hauling product.” Another spec decision was a dual-zone Bigfoot CTI system, an

Top: Spreader gear is locally designed and built by McMaster Engineering in Winton. Right: MirrorCam technology proves very useful for backing the trailer.

Below: Cab technology includes TracMap Controller spreading system and the optional 12.1-inch Mercedes-Benz driver display. updated version of the system used on the Actros but still something of a rarity for spreaders in spite of its advantages. “I think it’s quite a good feature for what we do and where we go. The front and rear can run at different pressures,” Lance says. Another option is the air suspension passenger seat – a choice mainly made for the comfort of those third generation Healys when they are along for a ride and a lesson in spreading. Power for the Arocs comes from the 10.7-litre in-line six-cylinder OM470 engine developing 315kW (428hp) and 2100Nm (1549 lb-ft) of torque. It’s the latest Euro VI (Step e) emissions specification. “We did look into the 13-litre, but it wasn’t available,” says Lance. It’s the third different engine among the trio with the 2013 Axor having a 7.2 litre engine and the 2017 Actros powered by the 12-litre V6. “Probably ideally, I’d like to see a 450hp available but the 430 performs well. You’re not thrashing it and having to change gear all day,” says Lance. “There’s plenty of power and torque from idle up to about 1500rpm and it will pull down to nothing. With the 16-speed gearbox it’s got close ratios, so the next gear is never that far away.”

Truck & Driver | 27

The final finishing details for the short wheelbase and tall standing Arocs is the factory Ruby Red paint adorned with the blue, yellow and grey company graphics applied by Sign Solutions in Invercargill. THL also took a factory sun visor and mounted it in a slightly lower position. This New Zealand Truck & Driver Big Test starts at first light at the Lumsden depot. Lance has scheduled three jobs that will take the Arocs into a variety of terrain and also show off its on-road abilities. Healy Transport/THL driver Jaime Ferris has been with the company about three years and previously drove the 1836 Actros until this truck arrived. Jaime originally hails from Te Anau and is a mechanic by trade and as well as driving Scania spreaders. My first question for Jaime is to ask what the new Arocs does better than the Actros? “Pretty much everything to be fair,” he says. “This new one is specced a lot better for what we do.”

Lance Healy (above) has three Mercedes-Benz spreaders and a Volvo FH bulk truck based at the Healy Transport/THL Lumsden depot.

28 | Truck & Driver

We’re heading south on SH6 towards Dipton and then west to Castle Downs with four tonnes of Dairy Boost 4 (a superphosphate with nitrogen mix) loaded into the truck to spread. The trailer is empty, but we’ll need it for the next job. Lightly loaded the Arocs is a relaxed highway cruiser using only 1450pm at 90kph in top gear and with a pleasantly controlled ride considering the short wheelbase. Jaime says the 3.08-metre can be a challenge on some of the narrower roads. “I think it’s slightly too high-geared for 90kph and it just lugs a little bit when it’s fully loaded,” says Jaime. “It’s feels just half a gear too high.” With most of his spreader work being in manual transmission trucks, Jaime wasn’t initially sure about the 16-speed AMT. “I was pretty sceptical about the whole automatic thing to begin with, but after the first season I wouldn’t thank you for a manual now,” he says. “They’ve come a long way. I remember the first generation automatics in the Mercs. They were alright I guess, but they were pretty slow to shift.” He says with more seat time in the Arocs he’s letting the truck shift gears itself more of the time. “I’m not shifting it manually all that often now that I have learnt the different drive modes and how to use the kickdown. “It’s got Normal mode, Offroad and Economy. Quite often I’ll sow in Offroad mode, leave it in automatic and it makes for a pretty cruisy day. “It’s impressive I’ve never had it miss a gear. You’d be hard pressed to get me back in a manual again. “Torque-wise it works really well in the paddocks and throttle response is really quick with virtually no delay. “A lot of old boys will tell you that you don’t need 400-plus


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horsepower – and you probably don’t. But once you’ve had it you don’t want to go back. “I do miss the outright torque of the Scania 440 I drove a few years back, but they are 12.7-litre.” The Arocs has to perform in the wide variety of Southland conditions and also be versatile in the work it can do. “We work on a bit of flat stuff around here and some steeper stuff when we up around Five Rivers and Athol area,” says Jaime. “It’s primarily super phosphate, urea and lime spreading but the truck also does sowing work with oats, kale, turnips, hops and grass seed. I’ve even spread sand onto horse arenas.” Across the board the Arocs is a step ahead of the Actros in technology and refinement. “It’s definitely a lot quieter than the old one. The Alliance front tyres we run on these are much quieter than your standard tractor

tyres. It doesn’t have that roar to it. “On-highway laden I’m running the fronts at 87 [psi] and the backs at 59. I’m probably running the front tyres a bit too high, but they seem to be wearing really well. “Lance has always run Bigfoot and their support is really good. You can ring them and talk over any problem you’re having on the phone.” The tyre selection on the Arocs pairs up 445/65 R 22.5 Alliance Flotation 398HS rubber on the front with dual rear Mitas AC 70G 425/75 R20 MPTs. Jaime says the selection of the 9t tonne front axle option has been a significant benefit. “This one has the 9 tonne front axle so it’s slightly harder riding because of having the four leaf springs. But it’s got the steering assistance ram in it so there’s absolutely no feedback. “A lot of people complained about this model, especially sowing, that the steering kicks back a lot. They tried putting steering dampers and all sorts of stuff on them to solve it. You just don’t need it in this. “You still feel what the steering is doing but there isn’t the kickback, especially crossing centre pivot ruts and stuff like that.” “Overall, it’s really impressive just how easily and quietly it goes about its work. “You don’t get out of it after 13 hours feeling completely knackered because you’re not fighting it all day. You’re not chasing a gearshift all day long and there’s no kickback through the steering.” As well as the traction benefits the 3.6-metre wheelbase brings other benefits include a very good steering lock and easy trailer backing. “Some of the dairy farms have got really tight gateways and it’s a lot more manoeuvrable when you are doing the hill work,” Jaime says.

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Dash switches allow independent control of the front and rear diff locks, important options when working on sloping terrain, slippery conditions and at a range of weights. Jaime also likes the three-stage High Performance engine brake system. “It’s good to have a Merc with an engine brake that actually works. I’m not holding my hanky out the window trying to slow down. It’s a noticeable improvement.” Jaime talks me through the in-cab technology of a modern spreader unit. “This is one of the first trucks with the new Tracmap Controller system. It’s not just a spreading map but it also controls the application rate and your spinners as well. “The bin in this one is also on load cells, so we get a readout of what’s in the bin at all times. It’s the best thing since sliced bread in this job. You always know that your application rate is right. “Later today we’ll be getting a load out of a urea silo. It means I can actually weigh it out rather than just guessing.” The cab is also fitted out with the control unit and display for the Dual Zone Bigfoot CTI, a CB radio and Jaime says there are two bin cameras – one internal and the other mounted up on the roll bar. “The remote control for the trailer hydraulics is still down at McMasters waiting to get fitted. If we could ever get automatic gate openers I’d hardly need to get out of the truck,” he laughs. “The MirrorCam is awesome for backing the trailer. This new trailer tends to cut in a little bit more than the old one, just because it’s a longer wheelbase. “One of the good things about working for THL is Lance likes to try new things. And if you’re not trying new things you’re standing still.”

Jaime Ferris has been driving the Arocs for 15 months and previously drove the Healy Transport/THL Actros 1836 unit.

Truck & Driver | 31

Above: Urea spreading on a kale crop in the Dunrobin Valley. Below: The 10.7-litre OM470 engine develops 315kW and has 2100Nm of torque driving to a 16-speed automated transmission.

32 | Truck & Driver

Another option in this Arocs is the 12.1-inch driver display: “It controls everything, and it took a little bit of getting used to after using dials for years. You can also do a lot of it through the steering wheel, but I find if you’re doing that your eyes are that bit lower and you’re not looking where you’re going,” Jaime says. “There are three power outlets on the dash plus USBs and the Apple CarPlay is quite handy because it reads texts to you. The handsfree through the CarPlay is really good – everyone you talk to says it’s really clear and it doesn’t pick up any of the engine or road noise.” There are other features which Jaime likes. “The foot release to raise the steering wheel forwards is really good and makes it so much easier to get in and out.” The 2.3m Compact SpaceCab provides some useful storage behind the seats and there are two large storage compartments. “The left one you can also get to externally, but the only problem is it’s up so high in this. “The only thing I’m disappointed in is I didn’t ask to spec the other storage box as a fridge.”


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I mention that there is the impression of sitting up noticeably higher than in the Iveco T-Way spreader we tested late in 2023. “You definitely sit up high in this,” says Jaime. “One of the very first things I noticed was I’m six foot one, and I can’t see the floor when I’m standing on the ground outside.” The Castle Downs dairy job is a quick one in two paddocks with the spreader throwing a 24-metre wide spread as we run at a steady 20kph in seventh gear. It’s a moderately bumpy ride but certainly not uncomfortable. “There’s no steering kickback on the bumps. The steering wheel just doesn’t move at all,” says Jaime. “The TracMap Controller is so simple to use. It takes care of the mapping and application rates for you, and it takes all the guess work out.” Two and a half laps of the paddock take care of this 4Ha job in about seven or eight minutes and once the trailer is hooked up again it’s a short trip to Ravensdown Dipton Lime at Castle Rock to load truck and trailer. Loaded to 39.3 tonnes the next road journey takes us north again on a mix of narrow seal and high crown gravel roads. On a gentle climb the loaded Arocs pulls up at 54kph in 13th gear using 1350rpm and drops into 12th when the speed falls back to 46kph. A considerably steeper climb is mostly completed in seventh gear at 17kph until a pinch near the crest requires fifth gear. As the gradient eases the transmission smoothly shifts up again. “You couldn’t shift as quickly and smoothly yourself, even with a Roadranger,” says Jaime. We meet the THL Axor at a farm adjacent to SH94 a little to the south of Mossburn. The loaded trailer of lime is left for the Axor driver to spread, and Hayden Woolston takes over to spread a truck load of lime. With the bottom end of The Remarkables just visible in the distance we head north again on SH94. There’s time for a quick coffee stop at Mossburn – and the obligatory `when in Southland’ Jimmy’s Pie – before heading west again to the Dunrobin Valley with an empty truck.

34 | Truck & Driver

It’s steeper here with a climb to a plateau where a kale crop is waiting to receive a spread of Sustain Green Urea. The built-in load cells prove their benefit here as Jaime is loading from an on-farm silo and the farmer has over-estimated his remaining stock. With only 2.2 tonnes available Jaime checks the job details and the area of the paddocks and checks in with Lance. The call is made to spread in two of the three paddocks that were planned. Urea is the lightest product which the Arocs spreads and Jaime says: “We can’t quite get up to weight with Urea. We cube-out at about 20 tonnes (truck and trailer).” The ground is a softer here than our first two locations and Jaime has the tyres pressures lowered to 34psi on the front axle and 28psi at the rear. This is another eighth gear spreading job at 24kph with a 30-metre spread. There’s a couple of short, steep dips to negotiate where the speed needs to be brought back a little. This has been a test where it’s not so much about the product as it leaves the factory floor but more about how experienced operators and local specialists make the best choices from the range of options available. It’s the blend of the latest Mercedes-Benz technology, Lance Healy’s careful selection from the available options and plenty of Kiwi technology which makes this Mercedes-Benz Arocs 1843 an all-round performer in the Southland terrain.

Jaime Ferris loading Sustain Green Urea into the Arocs.


0800 0800 0800 440800 CARTERS 4CARTERS CARTERS 4 CARTERS




HE SPREADING GAME… IT’S A SPECIALISED PART OF THE transport industry I had very limited exposure to until Allied Publications became involved with the inhouse magazine of the NZ GroundSpread Association a couple of years ago. Since then, I’ve realised there is a lot more to this sector of the industry than meets the eye. At first glance it seems like there’s a wide range of owner and operator preferences in regard to spreader truck brands, specs and equipment build – with a big part of it being the geography. Where in the country will the truck work and what will it be spreading? It’s a whole scope of decision making often based on years of experience. It’s actually just like the farmer who knows his land like the back of his hand. Every spreader test I have done over the last few years have been with operators and drivers who have lived and breathed the rural workplace. And this test is no exception. Owner Lance Healey is generational in the Southland spreader game and driver Jaime Ferris is also born and raised in the lower South Island. It doesn’t take long talking to him to realise he lives and

36 | Truck & Driver

Hayden Woolston breathes this gig and loves working in this countryside. We catch up with the Healy Transport/THL Arocs 1843 4x4 early on a mild summer morning just outside Lumsden. First, we head south to a dairy farm just out of Dipton and then make our way to Mossburn where it’s my turn to spread some lime. The Mercedes-Benz cab is always a pleasure to get into – even in these construction truck models like the Arocs they don’t skimp on the driver comforts. This cab and seating position seems very high but there’s no sensation of excessive body roll. You’re not swaying sideto-side even though you’re sitting up high.

• SPECIFICATIONS • Once I have the truck in position to start the paddock, we select the off-road mode and Jaime has the Tracmap Controller system set up for the job. The Controller version selects your application rate and the spinners while also giving you the GPS paddock map on the in- cab screen. You simply “colour in” with lime. I settle at 30kph, and the ride is smooth for paddock driving with the steering being very nice. This truck has the optional 9-tonne front axle which comes with a steering assistance ram. Lance explains the reasoning behind choosing the 9-tonne front axle is that the more commonly used 7.5-tonne axle tends to have issues with steering kickback. Readers will know that I am a fan of the Mercedes-Benz MirrorCam technology and I have tested a few trucks with them over the last couple of years. The first few times I really focussed on this feature but it’s interesting how quickly you adapt. There’s nothing special about this technology to me anymore – I can just get in and drive with

a noticeably wider field of view when you check the mirrors. When our bin is empty the next stop is Mossburn for a morning coffee break. The onroad performance of this spreader truck with its smaller wheels is impressively quiet – not highway truck quiet but a lot better than is usual when rolling down the highway on chunky spreader tyres. Having the Dual Zone BigFoot system helps that with being able to get the optimum tyre pressures for both on road and off road driving which in turn reduces tyre wear. There’s a bit of extra care and accurate steering placement needed for this 3.08-metre wide unit on some of the narrow Southland roads but overall, the Arocs is an easy truck to drive. The Arocs’ 430hp performance, responsive 16-speed automatic gear box and comfortable cab are great features from Mercedes-Benz while the rest of this truck is a well-thought out specification by people with just as much knowledge of the rural terrain as the local farmer.

Mercedes-Benz Arocs 1843 4x4 Compact Space Cab Engine: Daimler OM470 in-line six-cylinder (Euro VI, Step E) Capacity: 10.7 litres Maximum Power: 428hp (315kW) at 1600rpm Maximum Torque: 1549 lb-ft (2100Nm) at 1100rpm Fuel capacity: Diesel 290 litres, AdBlue 60 litres Transmission: Mercedes-Benz G280-16 16-speed automated manual with PowerShift3 Ratios: 1st – 11.722 2nd – 9.747 3rd – 7.916 4th – 6.583 5th – 5.291 6th – 4.440 7th – 3.636 8th – 3.023 9th – 2.664 10th – 2.215 11th – 1.799 12th – 1.496 13th – 1.203 14th – 1.00 15th – 0.826 16th – 0.687 Reverse – R1 10.656, R2 8.861, R3 2.422, R4 2.014 Final Drive ratio: 4.333:1 Front axle: 9,000kg rating Rear axles: 13,400kg rating Brakes: Drum brakes with ABS/EBS Auxiliary brakes: 3-stage High Performance Engine Brake Front suspension: 4-leaf elliptical springs with stabiliser bar Rear suspension: Elliptical leaf springs with stabiliser bar GVM: 18,000kg GCM: 50,000kg

Truck & Driver | 37

Driving the Next 100 Years



Driving the economy

Hall’s Group driver Tony Cook receives a special bravery award from Transporting New Zealand. From left: Transporting New Zealand interim chief executive Dom Kalasih; Hayden Reed, Hall’s Group Christchurch Transport Manager; driver Tony Cook; Hall’s Group South Island Regional Manager Tim Dickson; and John Collins, EROAD Market Development Director.

Celebrating remarkable achievements in the industry W


by Dom Kalasih Interim Chief Executive Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand

E AT TRANSPORTING NEW ZEALAND love nothing better than sharing and celebrating good news stories about the road transport industry. We all know our sector faces continuing challenges – roads and regulations being some of the biggest – and we continue to advocate to the government on behalf of our members and the wider industry. At the same time, trucking companies keep on keeping on, 24/7, despite adversity. For most, dealing with difficulties is just part of the job, but sometimes we think it’s worth taking a moment to pause and acknowledge truly outstanding achievements – even if, in true kiwi spirit, those who have done a great job remain unassuming and modest. That’s why I was delighted to travel to Christchurch in January to present a special bravery award to Hall’s Group driver Tony Cook. I was joined by John Collins from EROAD, one of our key partners, in thanking Tony and saying well done. Tony put himself on the line to offer help and support after a nasty car accident near Ward, in November, when a car driven

by an elderly Australian couple flipped and ended up on its roof. Truckers are often the first responders to many incidents on the road and Tony had some special talents he was able to draw on. After the presentation, we had a look around the Hall’s depot, particularly the loading bay and the scheduling and dispatch room. Man, was that a hive of activity! It reminded me how complex the supply chain is in terms of getting the right things to the right place at the right time. The range of people in the company in terms of age, gender, and ethnicity, particularly on the dispatch side, really showed me this is a sector that’s attractive to a great range of people. Big changes ahead It’s clear that 2024 will be another year of big change for the road transport industry but I am positive that we will see some improvements in many areas. The government is making some hard, and in some areas of the community, unpopular decisions, by rolling back previous policy initiatives. Late last year it scrapped Let’s Get Wellington Moving and the Clean Car Truck & Driver | 39

Driving the economy

Nevertheless, crossing the Cook Strait is critical to the nation’s economy and the unreliability of the current Interislander ferries, evidenced by multiple serious breakdowns over the past year, is unacceptable. It is imperative the government comes up with workable long-term replacements, and promptly. That was included as one of our eight priorities in our Briefing to the Incoming Minister prior to this blowing up. The introduction of RUC on light emission cars had to happen to make sure that all road users are paying their share towards keeping the roading system built and maintained. It is good to see the plug-in hybrids, which already pay some fuel excise, get a discount. It shows pragmatism and a degree of Transporting New Zealand interim chief executive Dom Kalasih, right, chats with Hall’s Christchurch fairness which we want to see from Transport Manager, Hayden Reed. every government. A key takeout from all this is that Discount and it called out KiwiRail over the price escalation of the new the government’s approach of being Interislander Cook Strait ferry project. more careful with money will be good for the country. I think in recent years This year it’s scrapped Auckland’s light rail scheme and announced it will there have been too many solutions being introduced that have been left introduce RUC for EVs and plug-in hybrid vehicles and that eventually it looking for problems to solve. intends to bring in RUC for all vehicles. In other news, it’s great that work is starting on the safety improvements However, I believe the government is, for the most part, making the right to SH5 between Napier and Taupo. The condition of this road has been calls. We can’t spend billions on schemes for one or two cities that just don’t appalling, so it is high time we saw some more action. Getting the shoulders add up when the infrastructure of the whole country is creaky in places. fixed and the roads widened makes this state highway safer for all drivers, The Auckland light rail project had $228m spent on it without a single and we believe it’s the better option rather than blanket speed restrictions bit of track being delivered. Let’s Get Wellington Moving was another well- that often aren’t backed up by any evidence of the need for them. intentioned but ineffectual and cost-heavy proposal. It’s worth noting that During January, I also spoke to the media about the flow-on effects of the the government intends to build a second Mt. Victoria road tunnel, and the costs of goods as the result of the current conflict in the Middle East and Petone to Grenada link – smart moves that should have happened years ago. attacks on commercial shipping in the Red Sea. Instead of using the Suez On the one hand, the magnitude of the price increases with the ferry Canal, ships have been diverting around the Cape of Good Hope, a journey proposal seemed absurdly expensive, on the other hand it seemed sad that that adds around 6,500km and 10 to 12 sailing days to each trip. our country seemed to be resigned to costs blowouts of those proportions I think anything that makes ships sail around Africa instead of using being the norm. Media interest in this was extremely high and one of the the Suez Canal is going to hike prices, with flow-on effects to the things we pointed out was that none of our members would remain in transport industry, and ultimately, consumers. I would be happy to be business for long if they managed fleet upgrades like that. proved wrong.

Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand’s team is available to asist our members around New Zealand Ia Ara Aotearoa – Transporting New Zealand PO Box 1778, Wellington 04 472 3877

Dom Kalasih, Interim Chief Executive 04 471 8285 • 027 441 4309 Vicki Harris, Membership Adviser 027 534 3848 40 | Truck & Driver

Keith McGuire, Regional & Sector Advisor Upper North Island 027 445 5785 John Bond, Regional & Sector Advisor Upper South Island 027 444 8136 Jim Crouchley, Regional & Sector Advisor Lower South Island 027 261 0953

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Photos Gerald Story Colin Smith


The newest addition to the Gore Freight & Storage fleet is a DAF CF 530 8x4 tractor and 4-axle Patchell Swinglift combination for container work.

GPS Tracking – eRUC – Job Management – eLogbook 0800 447 735 Truck & Driver | 43

Gore Freight & Storage has been providing a general freight service to the Southland region since 2009.

LLE THE GOLDEN LAB HAS SEEN NEARLY every change that has occurred at Glenn and Kerri Wylie’s Gore Freight & Storage. The 14-year-old moves around about a bit slower these days, but still keeps her nose in all of the business and happenings at the busy Southland operation. “She’s getting on, but she’s seen all the changes we’ve ever made here,” says Glenn. Gore Freight & Storage had just been established in September 2009 when Elle arrived as an energetic pup. A lot has changed in nearly 15 years with new buildings and a larger yard, plus new trucks and more staff as GFS has carved a foothold in the Southern transport scene based on its local general freight service. The Gore couple have been married for 17 years and have spent all of that time working together in the transport industry. “I started at Hokonui Haulage back in 1999 and then went to Andrews Transport in Riversdale as a stock truck driver,” says Glenn. Kerri’s connection to the transport industry is a family one. “Peter Stevenson (Puffy) and Michael Stevenson (Mick) are my uncles, and the late Bruce Stevenson is my grandfather,” she says. ``My two uncles and grandfather were all involved with Andrews Transport in Riversdale, and I used to spend a bit of time with them when I was younger.” Glenn continues the explanation: “Peter, along with Murray Maslin (Hoggett, now SVT) bought Sutherland’s Transport way back in the day, which then became Waikaka Transport. In a complicated way that’s why the two colour schemes are very similar. “I came down to run the freight side of Waikaka Transport here in Gore for a while before going to Northern Southland Transport in

Central Otago for a year-and-a-half. Then we had the opportunity to come back, split the rural and the freight at Waikaka and start Gore Freight & Storage Ltd. Which we did on the first of September 2009.” Peter Stevenson was a share-holder in the new business for the first two years. “We started with four trucks and a van in 2009 and we’ve got 18 today,” says Glenn. The steady growth has seen GFS build its local general freight service, take on sub-contracted work for larger operators and since early 2020 diversify into container work. Along with more trucks on the road the other big change has been the 8000 square metre site at the southern end of Gore where the company operates from. It was originally a Shell depot and later the Gore yard for Sutherland Transport. What was a gravel and grass yard to begin with is now almost completely concreted with new buildings and facilities. “The big shed has always been here and there used to be brick shed in the middle of the yard where the overnight trucks used to put their freight for delivery the next day,” says Kerri. “There was no concrete here when we started. It was all grass and gravel, and it wasn’t even fully fenced. We put the big freight unloading canopy on, two extra sheds and the new office block. Bit by bit we’ve concreted everything, not just to tidy things up, but it helps with R&M on the forklifts.” At the time New Zealand Truck & Driver visited GFS a new entrance-way was about to go in. “There’s now 2400 square metres of buildings including the freight unloading canopy. That’s been a game changer for us when you consider some of the wind and rain we can get down here,” Glenn says. Truck & Driver | 45

Above: GFS DAF CF hauling containers out of Bluff.

Below: Glenn and Kerri Wylie with Elle and Glenn’s `pride and joy’ 1995 Mack CH 689.

46 | Truck & Driver

“We’ve also put in a full security system and a new wash bay. Even some of the smaller things we’ve down make a difference – like the walk-along curtain brush unit. It means it takes two hours to wash a 23-metre unit and not four hours. “On the storage side it’s mostly full-palletised stuff – stock food, bailage wrap, and fertiliser. It’s all well integrated now and we’ve got four forklifts. “It’s all been step-by-step improvement and we’ve gradually made it a lot more streamlined than it used to be.” Having storage in the company name does however prompt a few interesting enquiries. “We actually get a lot of people ringing up for furniture storage. We don’t do that,” says Glenn. As the original split of Waikaka Transport suggests, the foundation of the GFS operation is general freight work. “Gore is the centre hub of Southland, so we are in the right place,” says Glenn. “It’s general freight – whatever they use in the local dairy factories, or the things farmers need to have delivered. We do a lot of Open Country Dairy cartage – milk powder, pallets, AMF drums, full shipping containers of raw ingredients, you name it.” There’s a lot of variety in the work and the destinations and having grown up in a farming family, Glenn has a good understanding of what rural clients require. “We’ve got a daily run that goes out of here to the West Otago area and another that goes out through Riversdale, Balfour and Waikaia. And there’s also a south run that goes out to Edendale and Wyndham and a Gore to Invercargill daily run as well.

“It’s general freight work as far north as Christchurch. Other than locally, we don’t have set runs. Today for example we’ve got a truck loading out of Synlait [Christchurch] with product for Open Country Dairy and one of the other trucks is heading up to do AMF drums out of Temuka. “Back in years five and six we probably grew a bit too quickly and that was a lesson. But overall, it’s been steady growth. Now that we have the depot pretty much finished, we’ve shifted the focus over to replacing the fleet,” says Glenn. The Southland economy has diversified a significant amount since the 1990s and the variety of work reflects that change. “We cart the seedlings for Wenita Forests and Southern Forests in the months of June through August, and we carry sawn timber for Stuart Timber out of Tapanui and for Ngahere Sawmills at Mataura,” says Kerri. Becoming an agent for Royal Wolf Containers in September last year is “another wee sideline,” Glenn says. “We’ve been doing some work for the Kaiwera Downs wind farm. It’s about 20km away with stage 1 done and stage 2 about to start. We just do general cartage for them, not the big stuff.” There is also plenty of seasonal work. In early February GFS had plenty of work carting marquees and general freight for displays into the Southern Fieldays venue at Waimumu. “From about August through to Christmas we’re moving a lot of palletised calf meal and stock feed onto local farms and things like grass seed orders and dairy

Top: UD Quon 8x4 makes its way past a Gore landmark, Sergeant Dan at the historic Fleming’s building.

Above: An early GFS fleet pic from 2009 and a more recent line-up taken in 2019. The fleet has now grown to 18 trucks.

Truck & Driver | 47

farm supplies.” Sub-contracting also plays an important role for GFS. The company works alongside big South Island players including Freight Haulage, Opzeeland, Hilton Haulage and others. “We do quite a bit of sub-contracting work for Freight Haulage, which is HWR Group of course, and also for Open Country Dairy through Southern Milk Transport,” Glenn says. “We had just started into the container side of things early in 2020 before Covid. Up till then it was mainly curtainsider work and general freight and we decided we needed to diversify into something else,” says Glenn. “Covid was hard going for a bit. But being in a mainly farming community, in the end it didn’t affect as much here as it did in the main centres.” The combination of its own freight work and sub-contracting works well for GFS. “By sub-contracting for other companies we can mix and match our freight and their freight, which seems to work well,” says Glenn. “The core of what we do is local work for local people. We let the big boys do what the big boys do and we’re happy to help them out when it’s needed. “Independence allows you to do that. It can be good sometimes and a real challenge at other times but it’s a niche that works pretty well for us. “I’d say we’re a bit unique in Southland because we can work for anyone. We have built the business on service and reliability. “Southland is a pretty small place and I want to work with everyone and get on with everyone. “We’re always trying to look into the future to see the openings that might be around the corner and be prepared to have a go. That’s our philosophy.” Having-a-go means a hands-on approach for Glenn. “I like to start any new job myself and make sure it’s going to work before I put the staff into it. I’ll spend a week or two doing the job to make sure I’m happy with how it’s working, and it’s been fine-tuned a bit. I’m definitely one of those people who won’t ask somebody to do anything I wouldn’t do myself.” “And the guys know that as well,” adds Kerri. GFS began with a Foden, a Nissan Diesel and two MANs in its fleet but has gradually moved to a mix of DAF and UD units along with a single Isuzu.

The company livery is the black, silver and orange which has its origin in the split of Waikaka Transport’s freight and rural operations. “I think the livery is pretty effective. You’re coming down the road and you can’t miss the big GFS coming towards you,” says Kerri. The upgrade of the fleet has gathered pace in the last few years with the 2000 model Foden A3-8R being the last of the originals from 2009 to be replaced two years ago. “We are predominantly UDs and DAFs now. Two of the DAFs are on 54t [permits] which seems to work for us down here and everything else is either 50MAX or 48t (apart from the smaller UDs used for local work). Two of the container B-train skellies are running on 58t permits,” says Glenn. “Paul Goodman (Skippy) from TMC Trailers has been very instrumental in helping us with our curtainsider and trailer needs through the years. “The DAFs are good value-for-money. They are comfortable and nice to drive, and they suit the work we need to do with them. “Chris Gray from Southpac has bent over backwards for us for about six years. He’s a big part of the decision to go with DAFs and having Transport Repairs right here in Gore gives us a good local back-up service,” says Glenn. “We tend to go with UDs for the local general stuff. We put a new UD 8x4 460 on last year with a five-axle TMC flat deck for the GoreInvercargill run. The backup on them through CVC in Invercargill is good as well.” “Kere Menzies from CVC at the time introduced us to our first new 8x4 Quon, fitted with a McCormick Motor Body truck canopy which we then put our first new TMC 4-axle curtain sider behind for our Dunedin run. This trailer was later fitted with a fifth axle to become our first 9-axle unit. The newest truck wearing the GFS black, silver and orange livery is a DAF CF 530 8x4 tractor working with a new Patchell SwingLift quad trailer. “The Patchell choice was mainly operator preference and recommendation,” says Glenn. “I gave Glen Heybourn at Patchells a call and he came down to see us. “All of our gear is pretty much off-the-shelf stuff, stock standard. We’ll change a few bits and pieces if the drivers want something.” There’s another new 8x4 DAF CF 530 Space Cab coming soon which will work with a new TMC skelly fitted with a generator.

Large freight unloading canopy has streamlined operations at the Gore depot.

48 | Truck & Driver


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The local theme is carried beyond the work GFS does and the service support for the trucks. “Carter’s Tyres looks after all our tyres and Sign Advertising in Gore does the signwriting for us. Beattie Auto Body Repairs takes care of our paint and repairs,” says Glenn. “We are pretty involved in the local community. I’ve been in the volunteer fire brigade for 23 years and we sponsor two of the local rugby clubs. We’re happy to help out with a truck for things like the A&P Show and if the local schools need something moved around. “We try to keep everything local to the best of our ability. Out staff is almost all local people, but we do have one truck which is Oamaru based, it’s just the way it worked out.” The staff numbers have steadily grown as well over the years with a current head count of 18 including Glenn and Kerri. “We’ve had great staff. We’ve had a few come and go, and come back again, but we haven’t had a high turnover,” says Glenn. The small company atmosphere has helped in this respect. “It’s not corporate here. There’s plenty of banter and you need to have a thick skin to work here,” says Kerri. “We just want people who get on with the job and are prepared to give anything a go. It’s a good mix of young and old. You can’t put a value on the experience of the older guys.” There’s one other truck in the GFS fleet that Kerri says is “Glenn’s pride and joy.” It’s a 1995 Mack CH 689 which originally started work in the North Island and later worked on a Dunedin freight run for Hokonui Haulage. “The Mack is a project,” says Glenn. “We tow the odd trailer around town when we need to, and it

Above: UD Quon 8x4 and 5-axle trailer work on a daily freight run between Gore and Invercargill. Below: Alex Reid started at GFS washing trucks after school and has progressed to his Class 5 license.

Truck & Driver | 51

3:16 PM

Above: UD 4x2 curtainsider is used for local freight work around Gore. Below: GFS DAF CF 530 begins a journey away from Tiwai Point.

52 | Truck & Driver

Driving is something that has become an irregular part of Glenn’s schedule. “Some weeks I won’t drive at all but this week I’ll probably do 40 to 45 hours. I just depends – if someone is away on holiday I’ll jump in a truck for a week or whenever it’s needed,” Glenn says. “This year we’ve put a dispatcher on, which lets Kerri focus more on the admin. He’s looking after the general freight dispatching and I’m concentrating on the containers and specialised stuff.” It’s the first step towards Glenn and Kerri finding a little more time for themselves. “The aim is to try and find a bit more time for ourselves and make sure we’re not spread too thinly. We’ll still be doing 12-hour days, but the goal is to try to make it Monday to Friday,” says Kerri. “We’ve probably only had about 12 weeks off in the whole time and we had our first proper holiday last year. “We always wanted to put the hard yards in to start with and we’ve pretty much put everything back into the business over the years.” Kerri says that sometimes she needs to pause to appreciate how far GFS has evolved in nearly 15 years. “Sometimes it feels like we haven’t done very much. But then you


goes to the Christmas Parade. I’m kind of attached to it and I don’t want to let it go. At some point I’ll spend some money on it.” The truck which Kerri has the closest attachment to is the 2004 Nissan Diesel CW440 6x4 she spent some time driving. In 2015 she became the first female driver to win the `King Rig’ award at the annual Gore Truck Show. Owning and running a transport business is something Glenn and Kerri have learned along the way. “Basically, Kerri and I have self-taught ourselves, but with a lot of outside help from different people along the way,” says Glenn. “Peter [Stevenson] is the main one. He said `Go for it’ and if something wasn’t going right, we’d ring him for some advice. “At the start he was a 50% shareholder for the first two years or so. He’s not involved now but we can still give him a call.” Kerri adds: “Without the support of both sets of our parents we wouldn’t have made it to where we have got to today.” Kerri has handled the admin side of the business, worked in dispatching for most of the past 14 years and made sure the business runs when Glenn is way driving. “I hadn’t really done any office work before this. I‘m actually qualified as a travel agent,” says Kerri. “We’ve found we’ve had to be open to adapting to change. The introduction of EROAD and Icos has made things a lot more efficient. “I’ve learnt a lot. Our first set of accounts we pretty much did a full ream of paper for one company. “I know some married couples can’t work together but we’ve been able to make it work,” says Kerri. “Glenn knows he can go away driving and the place will be okay.”












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look back at some of the old photos and think `wow things have changed so much’. “With building the new office block and the yard extensions we’ve actually done at lot.” Glenn says he enjoys the daily challenges of the transport industry but singles out another aspect of the business which he says has proven to be very satisfying. “I actually get a real buzz out of seeing the younger drivers coming through,” says Glenn. “One of our drivers, Alex (Spanky), started with us as a wash boy when he was 14, and he’s come all the way through with us to his Class 5. I get a buzz out of seeing the different things he’s doing now. “He’s the first to do that and we’ve got another young guy who’s started with us who will hopefully follow the same model. “I’ve probably been brought up in the old school way. I believe you need to start at the bottom, prove yourself and work your way up. And that isn’t necessarily the way anymore.” As far as plans to continue growing the business, Glenn and Kerri say they don’t have a clear direction at the moment. “We’ll finish developing the yard and keep on keeping on. At the moment making the next step looks like a big step,” says Glenn. “Somewhere along the line we’d like to bring someone else into the business, maybe as a part owner. We don’t really have a succession plan and we’ve got no immediate family who are transported-oriented. We’ll need to look at that in the future. “I’m now a senior station officer at the Gore Volunteer Fire Brigade and the whole philosophy there is `succession, succession, succession’ and it’s a bit ironic we don’t really have one here yet.”

Top: A Patchell Swinglift four-axle semi was selected for GFS container duties.

Above: Kerri Wylie focuses on the admin side of the GFS business while Glenn Wylie splits his time between container dispatching and driving. Truck & Driver | 55


Dennis Sparksman

Bright Spark


HEN IT COMES TO SMARTS, ACADEMIA IS NOT ALWAYS THE biggest teller. For example, Dennis ‘Sparky’ Sparksman of Mangonui Haulage couldn’t wait to leave his school in Peria. However, not only has he been at the forefront of haulage in Northland for over 30 years, but his company is one of the biggest employers in the area too – and for that, he’s a Southpac Legend. Dennis Sparksman was born in Kaitaia in 1949 and spent his younger and school years in the small town of Peria, just inland from Mangonui. The school part wasn’t his favourite. “I left school as early as I could,” says Dennis. “I wasn’t a scholar. When I left, I went to Australia for a year and then worked in Auckland for a little while.” With his travel bug suitably satisfied, Dennis decided to return back home to Northland where he joined an agricultural business his father

56 | Truck & Driver

and uncle had formed, taking his place in the seat of a bulldozer. “I loved the machinery and my heart’s still in driving bulldozers,” says Dennis. “My parents then moved to Canada and I took over their side of the business, and then my uncle’s side too,” Dennis recalls. “It sounds good, but it was only a couple machines.” Either way, it was a smart move for the youngster and something he went on to be involved in for around a decade. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately), when the government removed all the land development subsidies on farming back in the late 70s, Dennis decided it was time to get out of agriculture. So, in 1980 and at the age of 31, Dennis bought a truck and became an owner-driver for Mangonui Haulage. Mangonui Haulage was already an established business that could trace its roots back to the 1940s as George Small Transport. Small then

sold out to John Peat in the mid 1970s and it was bought by Peter and Colin Sole in 1979. The Soles introduced the Mangonui Haulage name and their standout brown and gold livery. “Peter Sole was a friend of mine and owner of the business – he was very good to me,” says Dennis. “I started out in a Ford D2418. I was doing livestock and thanks to removable sideboards, I did fertiliser and metal carting too.” Dennis believes that he only had his Ford for a short time before moving to an International T-Line. Before long, (around ‘82) the Soles decided they wanted out and the business came available. Dennis and three others stepped up to buy it. “There were three other guys that were involved,” he says. “Two other owner-drivers and one silent partner. The four of us were all equal shareholders but within a couple of years, two of them dropped out and that left Geoff Desmond and myself. Geoff Desmond is quite a familiar name in the transport industry.” The pair began revolutionising the business, and welcomed

technology along the way, claiming: “We were the first business in Mangonui to own a computer – besides the bank.” “If you don’t embrace technology and take it on board, you get left behind. So, we’ve always had a keen interest in it,” says Dennis. “We were very much into technology, but it’s left me miles behind now. We were the first ones walking around with a mobile (brick) phone and we had a computer in our office. We were up to speed with everything.” Geoff pulled out of the business in the early 90s and Dennis bought the remaining shares. With over three decades with Mangonui Haulage behind him, Dennis has seen and experienced a lot, but it’s clear that the pros far outweigh the cons. “I think one of our biggest breaks was when we got the contract to cart the logs for Juken Nissho back in 1991. Prior to that, the business was mainly livestock and general cartage.” Dennis says they were offered a truck by a logging contractor and at around the same time had a meeting with Juken Nissho offering them a contract to cart their wood. “That led to quite a big expansion. We went from one log truck to 10 in a matter of five years. Which eventually grew to about 35, in the logging area alone. That allowed the business to grow, when you get to 50 trucks that’s a bit of an achievement.” Dennis says that they also took over Kaitaia Transport’s livestock trucks in the late `80s and went from having two or three trucks to half a dozen.

Truck & Driver | 57

“Another high point was that we went into Readymix concrete, it was a good move that’s been very good to us and we’re proud of it.” He says that upgrading the fleet was a good move too. “When the logging thing started to grow, we purchased a lot of good but second-hand trucks. Then over the last 20 years we’ve worked through that and purchased new trucks – half-a- dozen new every year at one stage. Today the fleet’s average age is 3-4 years. So, we’ve come a long way.” The fleet itself is fairly varied, but Dennis believes that out of the main truck line up, half would be Paccar products. “As a mate of mine Warwick Wilshier once said: `they’re [Paccar] a 15 to 20-year truck if you want them to be’. Yes, you’re paying a bit more but you’re paying for the quality and the back up.” Dennis’s son Sean joined the business in the early 90s, but again not straight from school. “Dad wouldn’t give me a job driving trucks, so I went and did my time as a mechanic first. That was 1989,” says Sean. Dennis says that there have been a fair number of low points along the way too though, the latest being how Covid has affected business. “Covid and the resulting business interruptions, inflation and interest rates going through the roof are challenging, and the roading network up here is terrible,” he says. Dennis says they have sold the bulk of the logging fleet but still have around 50 trucks, and remain pretty diverse – Readymix, freight, bulk, logging, livestock, rubbish, and containers.

58 | Truck & Driver

“Diversification is one of our success secrets, you have to be up here, because there’s always one sector of the business that’s not performing for whatever reason. But when they’re all cranking along nicely it makes it worthwhile. “Staff-wise we’ve got up to 65. We run our own workshop with five mechanics and run an engineering shop as well, so we do a lot of our own repairs. And in the past five years we’ve added a purpose-built workshop in Kaitaia and purchased land in Kerikeri for a Readymix plant.” In terms of a succession plan, Sean and his brother-in-law Darren now lead the business, with Sean saying that they pretty much look after the day-to-day operations with the support of a good team. They say that Mangonui Haulage is a family owned and run business, even the employees are considered family with the bulk of them being there for 15+ years. “He also has half-a-dozen grandkids coming through,” says Sean. “At the moment, none are showing the least bit of interest, but things can change over time.” Dennis is 74 years old, but still makes the short trek from Coopers Beach to the office most days. “I’ve got to pay my bills,” he jokes. “I just love it. I like the people that are tied up in the industry. I’m semi-retired now so I come into work to drink coffee. If things are going good, I stay and if not, I leave.” He adds; “From my point of view it’s getting harder and not as much fun as it used to be – but that’s just about getting older too.” Dennis says that he doesn’t have a lot of hobbies. He has a nice fishing boat but hasn’t been doing much fishing lately. “My grandsons do all the fishing. They clean the boat, fillet the fish and I just eat the fish.” He also has a ‘95 Mustang convertible to play around with but says that he’s not that keen on mechanical things. “I’ve spent all my life fixing vehicles so when I have a day off, I don’t want to spend it fixing things.” Dennis sums up his life in the transport industry by saying: “It’s been a pretty good life mate. Long-standing friendships and relationships with people who are just like ourselves – good, down to earth, genuine people. “And that tends to be what the industry is full of. It’s the people that keep you in the industry.”


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LOGGERS AND LINE HAULERS. HI-TECH AND HISTORIC. Tippers, two-strokes, relics and racers. Bringing together 756 trucks from around New Zealand to celebrate the brand centenary made sure the Kenworth 100 event showcased the high profile role the marque has played in the New Zealand transport industry. From the first announcement of the centenary celebration, it was evident KW100 would be a record breaker and would easily dwarf the Kenworth 50 Years in New Zealand event held at Mt Maunganui in 2014. A 12-month postponement while Southpac Trucks grappled with the uncertainties of Covid restrictions only served to raise the anticipation levels. And from early Thursday February 1 when the first trucks began to roll into the Mystery Creek Events Centre near Hamilton, it was clear that something very special was happening. Whether it was a single truck display from an owner-driver

60 | Truck & Driver

or a multi-truck fleet line-up in familiar colours, the number of workhorses far outnumbered the show ponies. And although nearly 900 trucks pre-registered, the final turnout of 756 simply reflected the reality that some trucks were still needed at work. Southpac Trucks CEO Maarten Durent describes KW100 as “one for the history books.” “Would we do it again? Oh Yeah. No matter where you looked people were smiling. When the showers came through, I had a flashback to the deluge we experienced at the 2014 event, but it didn’t dampen the enthusiasm. “We had a dozen guests over from the factory in Australia and they were shell-shocked. They asked me `how do you do this? “I said: `It’s easy. You start five years out with an idea, you schedule a few tasks each month and make sure you get everyone involved. After a while you’ve got a show.

g n i k a M e Th “We’re making a file on all the things that didn’t go quite to plan for the next time. We’ll definitely be doing something like it again – not soon and don’t know when yet – but we will do something similar in the future.” While Southpac Trucks sales staff had a high profile around the venue, Maarten says the event was full Southpac team effort. “For us it had a great family feel. We had staff from the parts, accounts, marketing and service departments working in the merchandise shop because they wanted to be part of it all. We had the teenage children of staff members there for work experience. “When you see some of the bigger fleets arrive in convoy, and the drivers get out and start polishing the trucks, it shows the professionalism and pride that’s in this industry. That’s something that is very strong with Kenworth and it’s that passion and pride which helps our customers to attract the best people”.

One of highlights for Maarten came on Sunday morning after the celebrations. “At 9.30am on Sunday a lot of the trucks had left, and we were starting to pack everything out. It says a lot about the people in our industry that all the rubbish was in the bins and there wasn’t a mess to clean up. “The Mystery Creek people told us they’d never had an event like it where the place was left so tidy. It’s just one small thing that shows our industry is made up of really good people.” Mystery Creek provided the space and facilities for the massive turnout and the passion for the brand was evident as thousands walked the lines of trucks and photographed their favourites. The entry building that was transformed into a merchandise shop for the event was a hive of activity. It was an international event with Australian and US guests

Truck & Driver | 61

and enthusiasts making the trip to Mystery Creek and Southpac management rate the weekend as a resounding success. Among the many attendees at KW100 was Alex Gibbons, CEO of Colonial Motor Company, the majority shareholder in Southpac Trucks since 1994.

“The KW100 event at Mystery Creek is the largest event the CMC Group has been directly involved with in living memory,” says Gibbons. “We cannot thank Maarten Durent, Richard Smart and the Southpac Team enough for what will undoubtedly go down in New Zealand’s trucking history as a legendary celebration and one befitting the milestones it celebrated. “From our perspective, it is also a great way to give back to the industry, the trucking fraternity and the family of Kenworth enthusiasts and supporters throughout New Zealand.” Gibbons says his own career has a direct connection to the Kenworth brand. “Having started my own automotive career at Southpac working for Maarten, I and the Team at CMC have first-hand experience of how important these trucks are to their owners and operators.” “Kenworth Trucks are the embodiment of reliability and their durability is unsurpassed when conditions get tough.

Continued on page 64

62 | Truck & Driver


Opposite page: The PGF convoy arrives (above) and the prize-winning L.A. Schreiber 1977 W924 checks in the Southpac staff. Caption Above: The crowds arrived on Saturday morning for a long walk along the spectacular line-up of grilles.

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Truck & Driver | 63

From page 62 “CMC has a long and proud history in the trucking industry in New Zealand and we believe we understand what Kiwi operators want. We work closely with Maarten and PACCAR to ensure that, collectively, we go above and beyond to deliver whatever is required, be it facilities, truck customisation, servicing or staff training. Our goal is to be the best - our customers would expect nothing less.”

The level of interest in the KW100 event becomes even more impressive when it’s considered there was only limited promotion of the event outside of the transport industry. But still the crowds rolled in for the public segment of the show with traffic backed up across the Narrows bridge at mid-morning and the big Mystery Creek car parks filling fast.

Top: The gold colours and classic bonneted trucks of Waihi’s John Lockley Transport were an impressive sight. Below: The young Kenworth enthusiasts were in their element and the merchandise store was a popular destination.

64 | Truck & Driver


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Main pic: Friday was washday at Mystery Creek to have the rigs in top condition for the Saturday show.

Left: It was a long walk past 765 trucks old and brand new.

PRIZES ACROSS 12 CATEGORIES WERE AWARDED TO celebrate the best trucks at the massive KW100 event near Hamilton on February 3. When Southpac Trucks first announced plans to celebrate 100 Years of Kenworth worldwide, its suppliers and supporters quickly lined up to provide a fantastic range of prizes. And with an incredibly high standard of truck presentation, the KW100 judging panel certainly had its work cut out. Kenworth owners and drivers are known to be top-notch operators so there was no hesitation in inviting the local

Commercial Vehicle Safety Team to join with two overseas PACCAR employees to form the judging panel for KW100. On the Saturday of the event it was the panel comprising Aaron Kitahara (USA), Phil Spencer (Australia), Constable Andrew Ansell, and Senior Sergeant Lex Soepnel making their way through the thousands of visitors and the 756 trucks on display to come up with a list of prize winning trucks. There were initially 10 categories to be judged but at the request of the overseas two more prizes were added to recognise their favourites.

The trucks recognised as the best in their respective categories were: Best Cabover Kenworth (prize by Narva) – Hawke’s Bay Heavy Haul, 2023 K200 (HVYHUL) Best Conventional Kenworth (prize by Narva) – Blair Duncan, 1954 CC522 (PPF232) Best Kenworth 2010s to now (prize pack by Cummins) – John Lockley Transport, 2023 W900 SAR Legend (JLTSAR) Best 2000s Kenworth (prize pack by Cummins) – Northchill Group, 2005 K104 (FATBYZ) Best 1990s Kenworth (prize pack by Chemtec) – Ian Spedding, 1993 T900 (T90014) Best 1980s Kenworth (prize pack by Chemtec) – Quality Demolition, 1988 K100E (K&PKW) Best 1970s Kenworth (prize pack by Chemtec) – L A Schreiber, 1977 W924 (IM9401) Best 1960s (or older) Kenworth (prize pack by Chemtec) – Porter Haulage, 1964 848 Best Unrestored Working Truck (Dometic driver’s fridge) – Northern Linehaul, 2002 C501 (KW501) Best Restored Kenworth (prize by Narva) – Allen Mills & Son, 1973 LW924 (GO9051) Overseas Judge’s Show Favourite (prize pack by Southpac Trucks) – Dynes Transport Tapanui, 2023 K200 (QBQ868) Overseas Judges’ Show Favourite (prize pack by Southpac Trucks) – Guy Knowles Transport, 2018 K200 (KWK200)

Truck & Driver | 69

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By: founding editor (now retired) Wayne Munro EVEN THESE 25 YEARS (AND 276 ISSUES) later, New Zealand Truck & Driver magazine’s very first Big Test still rates as pretty damn impressive. Merehini Transport Company’s near-new Western Star 6900 did, after all, boast NZ’s first 600 horsepower (448kW) CAT 3406E engine… And the big power and big grunt (2788Nm or 2050 lb ft, to be precise) were routinely put to good use – with big loads on the rig’s two Kraft trailers (the first a clever Krafty Loda foldup). On our test, as usual, it toted 67 to 70 tonnes of logs at a time through Kaingaroa Forest – running at 100t all-up. The rig was altogether a quantum leap ahead of Merehini owner Bob Anderson’s previous drive – an old Pacific P10, that was still there in the Murupara truck park: Resting – a faithful occasional backup to the FlashHarry newcomer. Over many years and untold thousands of off-highway log-hauling kays, Bob and the Pacific had gone through its original 360hp CAT engine, then a Cummins 350. It now had a 560 Detroit! Compared to the Pacific the new Western Star was (unsurprisingly) very different, Bob said happily: “Like, it’s gone from a blinkin’ draught-horse to a racehorse! She just keeps pulling and pulling and pulling – as much as you like.” But the Western Star wasn’t the only hero of that Big Test: Like the truck, Bob was also special – a shining example of why we’ve come to expect the unexpected when it comes to people in the trucking industry. Evidence that there’s probably no such thing as a “typical truckie.”

Bob was the ultimate example: At 56, he’d been driving trucks – most of them loggers – for 44 years….the last 10 as an owner-operator. A classic, diesel-in-the-veins truckie for life. And yet….it wasn’t EVERYTHING in his life: As a young bloke, for instance, he’d turned down his first opportunity to become an owner/driver: “I wanted to see the world,” he explained. So, at 21, he headed off to the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. And, later on, did trips to Wales and Canada. After work…Bob shrugged off any hard-drinking truckie stereotype – instead heading straight back into the forest…this time on his Truck & Driver | 71

mountain bike, for up to two hours of exercise. Or he’d be spending time “with my five mokopuna. That’s what you live for, isn’t it.” Over the quarter-century since then, NZ Truck & Driver has interviewed/got to know thousands of Kiwi truckies – the owners and drivers of over 300 new trucks, the key figures in 270-odd trucking companies that we’ve profiled in Fleet Focus features….plus hundreds more interviewed for stories on trailer and body builders, tyre companies, fuel suppliers, repair shops and so on. And thousands featured in news stories covering the latest goings-on in the industry. In the Big Tests, we’ve covered no fewer than 28 different makes of heavy truck (that including both Caterpillar AND Cat Haulmax, Iveco AND Iveco Astra and Iveco Trakker…plus MAN AND the military-spec Rheinmetall MAN). In our first year the tests included our first Korean make, Daewoo. Then, in 2015, our first Chinese HD truck – a Sinotruk A7. The second Peoples’ Republic product, a Shacman X3000, followed just two years back. And then, last year, our third Chinese HD test truck – the XCMG E700 – swapped horsepower….for electric power. Our first EV Big Test. There’ve been Big Test lasts as well as firsts – featuring brands now gone from NZ’s new heavy-duty truck market. Along with Daewoo there’s been the short-lived CAT highway trucks, the North American Sterling (formerly Ford) …and Brit casualties Foden and ERF. Plus Volvo’s French brand, Renault. Back in ’99, the Merehini Western Star’s CAT 600 was in the running as one of the most powerful production truck engines available in NZ. But by 2008 even the Volvo FH16 Courier Post truck we tested had been specced with a 660hp rating for its linehaul run….although it often ran at little more than 40t all-up. Then, when Scania claimed the bragging rights to the world’s most powerful production truck in 2010, its early approval for NZ release triggered a Kiwi rush for the R730. We tested one of the first – a Glenn Carroll Transport livestock truck and trailer unit. In 2013 we did the first Southern Hemisphere test of Volvo’s new horsepower champion – the FH16 750. Freight Lines supremo (the late) Jim Barker had clearly bought enough Volvos over the years to get his 72 | Truck & Driver

way when he reputedly said he wanted “one of them three-quarters.” In 2020, Scania reclaimed No. 1 horsepower status – prompting our test of a Brett Marsh Transport Scania 770 S tractor unit in early 2022. That’s the most powerful truck we’ve tested….so far! But this issue carries news of Volvo’s newly launched 780hp 17-litre engine. Appropriately enough, the starting point in NZ Truck & Driver’s history also saw that first issue profile one of the country’s most historic road transport businesses as its Fleet Focus. Remarkably, NZ Express was, even then, 132 years old! And reckoned to be NZ’s oldest transport company – established in Dunedin in 1867 to service Otago’s gold rush and its booming sheep farming industry. Within 50 years the company had also laid claim to being the first Kiwi trucking company to go nationwide – with 11 offices around the country, plus one in London. But the ravages of the 1930s’ Depression led to contraction over the next 50 years – albeit with the NZ Express name (and its cream and red livery) surviving…even though the business had splintered into individually-owned regional companies. A relatively brief expansion phase – with operations in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch – had then been followed by more contraction/consolidation…. So by the time we profiled NZ Express, it was a Christchurch trucking, warehousing, container services, international forwarding and import/export business. Its glory days had long since passed, but GM Richard Riley was happy – wishing for the company to now be “known for its success – rather than being the biggest.” Our Fleet Focus profiles since have featured many of the biggest names in the NZ transport industry – like dairy giant Anchor Milk (now Fonterra), which, even in 2001, had 260 trucks and 700 drivers. Together they were clocking up around 36 million Ks a year – shifting 22,000 tonnes a day, on average! Log transport icon Mike Lambert was disarmingly honest in his Fleet Focus interview in 2001. He headed an operation then employing

380 people, running 100 trucks and turning over $65m a year – and still pondered: “What is success? How do you measure it? Judy (his wife) says to me, ‘what are we doing this for?’ I mean, your wife asks questions that are bloody hard to answer!” When he and Judy started out with one truck 40 years earlier, they’d never, ever dreamt of one day owning 100 trucks: They were thinking no further ahead than paying off the Bedford…..and then seeing if they could buy a house! Also in 2001, Freight Lines founder (the late) Jim Barker recounted the moment that set him on the path of famously breaking Rail’s Cook Strait ferry monopoly. Freight Lines, he said, had “got fairly good” at shifting livestock between the islands – but was hugely frustrated by Rail’s chronic unreliability and unwillingness to work with the trucking industry. At NZ Rail HQ Big Jim told them “that if I couldn’t get any satisfaction out of them, we’d put a ship on. “They all just about fell out of their chairs laughing at the thought that anyone would start up against the Railways.” They probably weren’t laughing when, in October 1992, Big Jim’s Straitsman ferry started work. Railways’ Cook Strait stranglehold was over. HW Richardson Group founder, (the late) Bill Richardson, got into the industry simply because he loved trucks. His son Harold shared his passion and Bill said, for that reason, he’d “always said” he wouldn’t sell the business: “It was all Harold ever wanted to do – to come into this business.” Terrible tragedy had struck the Richardsons in 1995, when Harold – who’d been in the business 13 years by then – was killed in a car crash. Said Bill: “And then, after Harold was killed I couldn’t sell it either: Firstly, what was I going to do? And I thought how hacked off he’d have been if I’d chucked it in because he wasn’t here. I knew what he expected for the business.”

Just before his death Harold had happily told Bill: “We’ve made it…. we’ve turned over 100 million!” By 1999, with Harold’s passion for the business still being felt, the Group’s turnover topped $160m. Our Fleet Focus profiles haven’t only been about the biggest: Some of the best stories have come from merely modest outfits…..and in tiny, out-of-the-way places like Utiku, Nightcaps and Okaiawa. On the other hand, we have occasionally gone international. Salt Lake City’s C.R. England – one of USA’s biggest refrigerated truckload carriers, with nearly 5000 tractor units and 6300 semitrailers – revealed that the science of a good truck spec is one reason for its success. With constant research and first-hand trialling, they’ve settled on the precise “sweet spot” for their huge truck fleet – namely Freightliner Cascadias (the make accounts for around 93% of the fleet), with 455hp/1750 lb ft Detroit engines, a maximum 65mp/h cruise control speed (or 62mp/h on the throttle pedal), a 2.16:1 diff ratio and with

Truck & Driver | 73


2 manual mode locked out on their DT12 AMTs. Along with a long list of other fuel-saving measures – including low rolling resistance tyres, automatic tyre inflation on the semi-trailers and aerodynamic mudflaps, shrouds and fairings – the spec even includes a super-precise 42-inch gap between the rear cab wall of the tractor unit and the front of the semi-trailer…for optimal fuel efficiency without risking damage. This “sweet spot” spec had delivered a fuel saving of 38% in 17 years. On a $US15-18m annual fuel bill, that’s a helluva saving! A fleet in Alice Springs provided insights into delivering a product in good condition in the most trying environment: The Bilato brothers – owners of roadtrain operator G&S Transport – know full well that the Dead Centre’s brutal environment is a deadset truck-breaker…so they go huge on proactive, preventive maintenance on their 30 Kenworths.

The washboard roads can be, says Frank Bilato, “f***ing shocking! Rough? Hundreds of kilometres of rough! Some nights you pull up and you think ‘there can’t be a truck left!’ Your vision’s going and your teeth are chattering and you walk away from it in the dark and look back at it and think ‘poor thing – it’s just been hammered!’ ” NZ Truck & Driver was born as a news-stand publication covering the road transport industry, AND filling the role of the official magazine of the Road Transport Forum (now renamed Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting NZ). Even though so much has changed in 25 years, so much also remains the same – like Transporting NZ and National Road Carriers championing the industry to the public and to the Government. And like our stated aim in Issue 1’s editorial: “To be a must-read for everyone involved in the road transport industry.”


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By Hayden Woolston WHEN NEW ZEALAND TRUCK & DRIVER magazine began back in March 1999, I was just starting my first year of intermediate school. But I had grown up around trucks with my father Trevor founding NZ Trucking magazine and then going on to start truck racing in New Zealand and run big transport industry shows. Trucks were a major part of my childhood. In the second year of NZ Truck & Driver the Woolston kids (originally Waikato born and raised) moved to Auckland, either for university or high school. The family was living above the offices in Auckland city, and it was handy to have access to the office for school projects (when I did them). When I was 17 I moved out of home and if someone had of told me then I would end up working for my father, and would one day end up taking over from him, I would have said they were mad. As you know in your teenage years sometimes relationships get strained. I always respected my father, but at that age for some reason you think you know better. So, after a few years working at APL Direct, 74 | Truck & Driver

followed by an OE in Europe, I had done some growing up and I was offered a job in the business. My first job for the magazine was advertising sales. I had no sales experience other than pouring beer at the UK bars I had worked in, but after a few months of following my father around I picked it all up slowly. There are many highlights during my time at the magazine – the early memories of working with Dave Jackson and Wayne Munro and the fun times we had. But I am most thankful for being able to work closely with my father. As a lot of people in this industry will know, family businesses are not always a bed of roses. But in my opinion, you get more done and when the family is strong you all end up better and closer for it. So, what are my feelings on NZ Truck & Driver driving past the quarter of a century milestone? It’s been fun, a challenge and it’s a pleasure to be able to say many of our customers are also our friends. This industry, and the people who are part of it, draw you in. It gets into your veins, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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CHANGE IS ALWAYS TAKING PLACE RIGHT IN FRONT OF OUR EYES. The pace is typically gradual and often not immediately evident – until comparing two points in time and the differences become more obvious. And when the timescale is a full quarter of a century, with both data and anecdotal evidence at hand, the pace and scale of change becomes a lot clearer. When the debut issue of New Zealand Truck & Driver magazine was in your local book shop (remember them?) or on your desk in March 1999, the Western Star featuring on the cover carried an old “two letters and up to four digits” registration plate. You only need to flick through the pages of the March `99 issue to recall both the trucks and VDAM rules were very different. The only five-axle trailer appearing in the inaugural issue is in an Australian photograph of a roadtrain double. Nearly all the semi units in the magazine are three-axle. Our very first Big Test went big on horsepower with a new CAT 3406E developing 600hp and powering a Western Star 6900 off-highway logging double. We also reported on HWR Group becoming the first New Zealand customer for a new Sterling (and carried a full page ad for the new brand) and we looked ahead to the big attractions of the Transport `99 expo. But perhaps the biggest change in New Zealand trucking is easily found by taking a dive into the registration figures. With 2023 truck sales at record levels, the size of the new truck

market has grown more than five-fold in 25 years. Back in 1999 the registration total for new trucks (above 4.5-tonne GVM) stood at 1202 units. Last year the market reached 6183 units and both Isuzu and Fuso each sold more units in 2023 than the size of the entire market in 1999. The leading brand a quarter-of-a-century ago was Mitsubishi/Fuso with 339 units registered during 1999 – ahead of Isuzu with 288, Hino 168 and Nissan UD 102. The four major Japanese brands accounted for 74.7% of all new truck sales and no non-Japanese brand registered more than 50 units. Kenworth was closest at 48 registrations ahead of Scania with 40 and Mack and Volvo tied with 35 registrations. In 2023 the Japanese brands still led the sales charts but their combined market share dipped to 56.8% of all new trucks above 4.5t GVM. The market growth has been biggest among the heavy duty trucks (above 23 tonnes GVM). The segment which totalled 465 new units in 1999 has grown more than six-fold in 25 years to 2929 units last year. Modern era segment leader Scania alone achieved 616 new registrations in 2023. It’s one snapshot of how the size and make-up of the Kiwi truck fleet has changed in 25 years. In another regard it’s a case of “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” The cover price on the debut March `99 edition of New Zealand Truck & Driver was $5.95. Enter that figure into the Reserve Bank online inflation calculator and the answer is $11.06 in Q4 2023 money.

76 | Truck & Driver


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No stopping the Dunedin Truck Show THE ANNUAL REILLY’S TOWAGE AND SALVAGE DUNEDIN TRUCK Show copped some severe weather early on Saturday January 27, but fortunately it was short-lived and conditions improved quickly. Show organisers were making early morning preparations at the Mosgiel A&P Showgrounds when thunder and lightning, hail and strong winds battered the venue for about 20 minutes. The grounds were soaked and there was a short discussion about cancelling the show before the call was made to press on. “By 7.30am the sun was out and the temperature was lifting and the trucks started rolling in at 8.30am. We ended up with blue skies and a 26degC afternoon,” says show coordinator Stan Mason. “Our biggest fear at that time was reduced truck numbers as the roads were still pretty wet. After all the hard work and dedication from truck owners and drivers, there’s nothing worse after washing and polishing than to cop a wet road and spray. “But 59 entries turned up and we had a great mix of brands and configurations along with many familiar faces who have supported the show from day one,” Stan says. “Our major sponsor, Reilly’s Towage & Salvage, were front and centre with their Freightliner Argosy underbody lift recovery truck. The Argosy is a statement piece that had many a truck driver looking

over its details and capabilities but it was the biggest attraction for the children who just love the size of the mighty Freightliner.” Thanks to the support of sponsors who offered a range of prizes, the trucks were judged across 26 categories. “A massive thank you to everyone who put in a fantastic effort with the presentation of their truck. They all looked spectacular,” says Stan. “We are immensely grateful to the three judges – Alex McLellan, Hugh Tait and Mark McNeilly – for the very tough job of judging on the day and also to Dynes Transport for their support and the use of their barbecue.” The team at A&L Coombes took out the `King Rig’ prize with their new Scania S770 and the `People’s Choice’ award was won by Gary Cuthill from Scott Transport for their new Kenworth T909. The Maxwell Bros. 1984 International TF 2670 was judged Best Classic and Rohan Haulage won the Fleet prize. “Congratulations to all the category winners and thank you to all our sponsors who yet again donated numerous prizes. Without them the show wouldn’t be possible,” says Stan. The Dunedin Truck Show is staged as part of the annual Mosgiel A&P Show.

Top: O’Reilly’s Towage and Storage were sponsors of the 2024 Dunedin Truck Show.

Below: The Maxwell Bros. International T-Line (left) won the Best Classic prize while the `King Rig’ prize went to new Scania S770 of A&L Coombes (right).

78 | Truck & Driver

Above: People’s Choice went to this Kenworth T909 (left) while the Mosgiel Volunteer Fire Brigade won the Best Iveco prize (right). Below: Rohan Haulage (right) were winners of Best Fleet.

O’Reilly’s Towage and Storage Dunedin Truck Show

Award Winners

Best DAF - Halls Refrigeration, Jayden Turnock Best Freightliner - Halls Refrigeration, Phil Taylor Best Hino - McEwan Haulage, Adam Ledingham Best Iveco - Fire And Emergency NZ, SSO Scott Launaze Best Kenworth - Rohan Haulage, Jake Rohan Best Mack - Allied Bulk, Bernie Harford Best Mercedes-Benz - Fulton Hogan, Iain McLellan Best Scania - Scott Transport, Shae McKenzie Best Volvo - Calder Stewart, Shane Dallas Best Western Star - Halls Refrigeration, Jayden Turnock Best Flea - Maxwell Bros, Shayne `Chucky’ McAndrew Best Chrome - A & L Coombes, Aaron Walker Best Tractor Unit - Rohan Haulage, Jake Rohan

Best Rigid - A & L Coombes, Aaron Walker Best Logger - Lennon Haulage, Hayden Lennon Best Classic - Maxwell Bros, Shayne `Chucky’ McAndrew Best 0-500,000km - A & L Coombes, Aaron Walker Best 500,000-1 Million km - Rohan Haulage, Vaughan Rohan Best over-1 Million KMs - Maxwell Bros, Todd Maxwell Best Fleet – Rohan Haulage , Vaughn Rohan Furthest Travelled – Mainfreight, Hayden Campbell Committee Choice - Southern Bulk Transport, Sam Welsford Sponsor’s Choice - Maxwell Bros, Todd Maxwell People’s Choice - Scott Transport, Gary Cuthill King Rig 2024 - A & L Coombes, Aaron Walker

Truck & Driver | 79

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MAJOR NEW HUB FOR SIME DARBY MOTORS AND Industrial operations is under construction at Waterloo Business Park in Christchurch. Development of three separate projects – purpose-built facilities on long-term leases for Sime Darby Motors New Zealand (Sime Darby Motors NZ) businesses and Terra Cat New Zealand, plus a shared four-storey head office – began in late 2023. Sime Darby Motors NZ businesses on-site will include Truckstops, TWL, Volvo Trucks NZ, Mack and Hyster. “This is part of an on-going programme of growth and investment in New Zealand and reinforces our commitment to our South Island employees and customers,” says Pat McKenna, Managing Director of Sime Darby Motors NZ. “The move represents a significant investment over the course of the build to design, fit out and relocate our employees into an efficient, sustainable, purpose-built work environment, due to open by the end of 2024.” Sime Darby Motors NZ commercial businesses supply premium truck brands and materials handling equipment, supported by a nationwide service network and part sales and distribution operation. The new Christchurch site will contain a 14-bay mega truck service centre, parts distribution centre, TWL retail outlet, and Volvo Trucks NZ, Mack and Hyster showrooms. Caterpillar dealer, Terra Cat New Zealand will move its Christchurch branch, including its Terra Analytical fluid-testing laboratory, to an adjacent 2.5ha site. “Terra Cat, and the Gough Group before that, has been based at its Hornby location on Amyes Rd since the 1970s, and this project is an exciting opportunity to develop a state-of-the-art national headquarters and service branch for Cat,” says Terra Cat CEO, Chris Heaton. Sime Darby Motors NZ and Terra Cat New Zealand have shared the current Amyes Road and Branston Street site in Hornby since Sime Darby acquired the Gough Group in 2019.

“This will enable us to continue providing a world-class service to our customers and take our support for our branches across the country to the next level,” says Heaton. The support office will accommodate about 200 Sime Darby Motors NZ and Terra Cat NZ employees within the mixed-use precinct called The Works, complete with green areas for walking and cycling. Future developments for The Works precinct include plaza areas to buy food and drinks, as well as access to gym and childcare facilities. Sustainability features are being integrated into the new buildings, including stormwater recycling, electric vehicle and e-bike charging stations, and building management systems that incorporate smart technology to optimise heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. The support office will incorporate solar energy, while the other two sites will be future proofed for solar energy. All three projects are on track for completion by the end of 2024.

The new Truckstops facility (top) and service bays (below). SDMNZ and Terra Cat NZ staff will share a new office complex (insert).

Truck & Driver | 81

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S THE TMS TELETRAC NAVMAN TECHNOLOGY | MAINTENANCE | Safety Conference & Exhibition draws closer, organisers are thrilled with the quality of industry support the event has received from other associations, sponsors, and exhibitors. With over 50 exhibitors locked in for the March 13-14 event, exhibition space has sold out and attendees are encouraged to buy their tickets to avoid disappointment. Leading industry names such as Volvo, Penske, Isuzu, UD Trucks, Hino Trucks, Z Energy, Levanta Superior Workshop Solutions, NAPA, Transpecs, Alemlube, Milwaukee, Waimea Engineering, to name just a few, have come on board as gold and silver exhibitors along with a huge variety of bronze and standard exhibitors that showcase and reflect the vast and varied trucking industry from all aspects of technology, maintenance and safety. HARMfree Transport & Logistics and TruckSafe, will be front and centre with NZ Trucking Association and National Road Carriers keen to promote the importance of health and safety within the transport industry. The event offers a perfect opportunity to showcase to attendees what best practice in this space looks like and the HARMfree and TruckSafe teams will be on hand to speak to delegates and give insights. “This event has been carefully created after listening closely to the industry. We have taken on board feedback from across the transport sector, and cherry picked the best bits from international events, to bring this event to life. This is not your classic ‘dry’ conference, this is a bespoke event curated specifically for the transport industry and all those who support us,” says David Boyce, CEO, NZ Trucking Association. Justin Tighe-Umbers, CEO of National Road Carriers agrees: “Feedback from previous events has shown us how much value attendees place on having the time to ask questions of presenters or connect more deeply on the sector specific issues, not to mention networking with industry colleagues and reconnecting with old friends. “This is why we have intentionally created an event format that allows for a mix of guest speakers, sector sessions, networking events, exhibitions, awards, cutting edge technology on display, on top of trucks, trucks, and more trucks.” Organisers have also listened to calls from industry to have one nationwide transport industry event, that brings together representatives from all areas of the industry. The TMS Teletrac Navman Technology | Maintenance | Safety Conference & Exhibition promises to do just that, with service suppliers, manufacturers, telematics, agencies (e.g., MSD), regulators (e.g., NZTA), finance,

Dave Boyce (left) and Justin Tighe-Umbers are thrilled with the quality of industry support the event has received. insurance, and technology all well represented alongside transport operators and firms. “For the first time we will also have the key transport associations coming together to share best practice under one roof. We look forward to welcoming the Crane Association, Ground Spreaders Association and the Heavy Haulage Association, along with our Australian partners the Australian Trucking Association, NatRoad, and TruckSafe Australia,” says Boyce. “Attracting and keeping talent into the industry remains one of our biggest challenges so aside from an enlightening session on what our future workforce looks like, pipeline creation, culture, and leadership, we will have a strong focus on the Careers Transport Expo and showcasing the industry to future talent,” says TigheUmbers. “Senior students, and adults looking for a career change, have been invited from all over the South Island to attend the Careers Transport Expo on Wednesday March 13 9.30-11.30am at Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre.” “Another key part of the event is celebrating industry success. At the Award and Networking event on the Wednesday night, we will be using the opportunity to celebrate industry leaders across the technology, maintenance and safety sectors,” says Boyce. Awards nominations are open for – PartsTrader Technology Award, bp Maintenance Award, and ACC Safety Award. Details on the awards can be found at tmsconference2024.” Keen to nominate? Email Truck & Driver | 83

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Paul and Chrissy Kenyon have a new Scania P 410 B4x4HZ fert spreader based at Reporoa and contracted to Wealleans Reporoa. The new XT spec unit was sold by Callan Short and features factory Scania paint with signwriting by Caulfield Signs Rotorua. A new Wealleans fert bin, Bigfoot CTI and TRS wide wheels are fitted. The Scania DC13 produces 410hp matched to a GRS905 12-speed manual, RP835 rear axle, leaf spring suspension front and rear with ABS/EBS drum brakes.

A roaring start to 2024 sales JANUARY’S VEHICLE REGISTRATION DATA CONFIRMS a roaring start to 2024 for both the new trucks and new trailers. According to NZ Transport Agency registration data there were 462 trucks (with a GVM of 4.5 tonnes-plus) registered in the first month of the new year. It’s not only a solid 15.5% increase on the 400 sales in January 2023, but a new record for January truck registrations. Isuzu is maintaining the momentum from its strong finish to 2023 to lead the truck market with 84 registrations in January, a significant 18 units up on January 2023. Scania also started the new year very strongly, climbing from fourth in the full-year 2023 market rankings to claim second place in January 2024 with 65 registrations, ahead of Fuso on 49. The January registration data also shows a big lift in the new trailer segment. It’s well up year-on-year with 148 sales being an impressive 54.2% ahead of the January 2023 total of 96 units. Fruehauf is continuing its success from 2023 in the trailer market, claiming the top spot with 20 registrations for January (up from 12 in 2023). In the 4.5t-maximum GVM truck market the leading trio is Isuzu, Scania and Fuso. Fourth ranked Hino are next with 47 registrations ahead of Volvo (42), DAF (38), Kenworth (37), UD (33), Mercedes-Benz (21) and Iveco (10) rounding out the top-10. In the 3.5-4.5t crossover segment, LDV (22) is the convincing leader ahead of Mercedes-Benz (11), Ram (4), Iveco (3), Ford (2) and

Volkswagen (1). Notably Fiat, market leader from 2023, is yet to register any units. In the 4.5-7.5t market segment Isuzu (29) leads ahead of Fuso (15) and Hino (15) tied in second. Chevrolet (9), Mercedes-Benz (9), Foton (6), Hyundai (5) Iveco (2) and Ram (1) are next. The 7.5-15t segment is led by Isuzu registering 39 trucks in January, ahead of Fuso (19), Hino (14), Foton (4) and UD (3). The small 15-20.5t category was led by Hino (7), ahead of UD (3), Fuso (2), Mercedes-Benz (2), Scania (2) and DAF (2) and the 20.5-23t segment is off to a quiet start with Scania registering just one unit. Scania continues as its finished in 2023, leading the 23t-max GVM category with 62 registrations for January 2024, an impressive 63.1% increase from January 2023 (38 registrations). Volvo (42) is another fast starter taking second position, up from 29 registrations last year. DAF (37) moves into third position with a strong month (up from just 18 last January) and tied with Paccar sister brand Kenworth with 37 registrations. The rest of the top-10 brands is completed by UD (27, up from 12), Isuzu (16), Fuso (13), Hino (11), Mercedes-Benz (9), and Iveco (8) rounding out the top-10. Fruehauf (20) continues to lead the trailer market ahead of Roadmaster (14), Transport Trailers (10), Patchell (9), Domett (9), TMC (8), MTE (7), Freighter (7), Transfleet (6), and Jackson (5) to round out the top-10 for January 2024. Truck & Driver | 85

Findlater Construction in Blenheim has a new Isuzu CYZ 530 tipper working in its fleet. The 6x4 with 530hp, 18-speed Roadranger and 4.33:1 rear axle ratio with inter-lock is carting rock and gravel for Marlborough projects. A Transport & General Hardox tipper body is fitted along with an alloy front bumper, Alcoa super singles with 385/65 tyres, CVA stone guard and sun visor, reversing camera and genuine Isuzu seat covers and floormats. Sold by Andrew Root from Wadsco Trucks.


Vol 84 65 49 47 42 38 37 33 21 10 10 7 6 4 3 2 1 1 1 1 0 462


% 18.2 14.1 10.6 10.2 9.1 8.2 8.0 7.1 4.5 2.2 2.2 1.5 1.3 0.9 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.0 100

Vol 84 65 49 47 42 38 37 33 21 10 10 7 6 4 3 2 1 1 1 1 0 462


Vol 22 11 4 3 2 1 43


% 51.2 25.6 9.3 7.0 4.7 2.3 100

Vol 22 11 4 3 2 1 43


Vol 29 15 15 9 9 6 5 2 1 91


% 31.9 16.5 16.5 9.9 9.9 6.6 5.5 2.2 1.1 100.0

Vol 29 15 15 9 9 6 5 2 1 91




% 18.2 14.1 10.6 10.2 9.1 8.2 8.0 7.1 4.5 2.2 2.2 1.5 1.3 0.9 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.0 100

% 51.2 25.6 9.3 7.0 4.7 2.3 100

% 31.9 16.5 16.5 9.9 9.9 6.6 5.5 2.2 1.1 100

Huge month for trailer registrations 7501-15,000kg GVM Brand ISUZU FUSO HINO FOTON UD TRUCKS HYUNDAI MERCEDES-BENZ Total

Vol 39 19 14 4 3 1 1 81


% 48.1 23.5 17.3 4.9 3.7 1.2 1.2 100

Vol 39 19 14 4 3 1 1 81


Vol 7 3 2 2 2 1 17


% 41.2 17.6 11.8 11.8 11.8 5.9 100

Vol 7 3 2 2 2 1 17

20,501-23,000kg GVM Brand HINO FUSO ISUZU SCANIA VOLVO DAF Total

Vol 16 6 3 3 1 1 30


% 53.3 20 10 10 3.3 3.3 100

Vol 1 2 0 2 0 0 5




% 48.1 23.5 17.3 4.9 3.7 1.2 1.2 100

% 41.2 17.6 11.8 11.8 11.8 5.9 100


20 40 0 40 0 0 100


Vol 62 42 37 37 27 16 13 11 9 8 7 4 3 1 2 279


% 22.2 15.1 13.3 13.3 9.7 5.7 4.7 3.9 3.2 2.9 2.5 1.4 1.1 0.4 0.7 100

Vol 62 42 37 37 27 16 13 11 9 8 7 4 3 1 2 279



% 13.5 9.5 6.8 6.1 6.1 5.4 4.7 4.7 4.1 3.4 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.0 1.4 1.4 1.4 1.4 1.4 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 11.5 100

Vol 20 14 10 9 9 8 7 7 6 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 17 148



% 22.2 15.1 13.3 13.3 9.7 5.7 4.7 3.9 3.2 2.9 2.5 1.4 1.1 0.4 0.7 100

% 13.5 9.5 6.8 6.1 6.1 5.4 4.7 4.7 4.1 3.4 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.0 1.4 1.4 1.4 1.4 1.4 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7 11.5 100

Westland Engineering Supplies

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K & L Distributors Ltd 09 558 3278

Westland Engineering Supplies is a locally owned and operated company and is proud to be the Caltex Distributor for the West Coast from Karamea to Haast. We pride ourselves on being able to offer and supply the best product backed by the best service and technical back up in the industry. We can offer overnight delivery to virtually anywhere on the West Coast. Just give Danny, Deane or Kate a call and we will be pleased to assist.


Westland Engineering Supplies 03-768 5720

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An Isuzu CYZ 460 6x4 tipper is the latest addition to the 40-strong fleet for Blenheim-based Gill Construction. The 460hp unit has an 18-speed Roadranger and 4.33:1 inter-lock rear axle. Adams & Currie built the tipper body with paint by Forbes Panel & Paint and signwriting by BB Signs. A reversing camera plus CVA stone guard and sun visor are fitted. Sold by Andrew Root from Wadsco Trucks.

Andrew Cave has taken delivery of a new Iveco T-Way 6x4 tipper for his Contract Earthmoving operation based at Mangatainoka. The 510hp T-Way low-roof sleeper has a 5m steel tipper bin built by Elite Truck Specialist and is fitted with a TRT Traction Air CTI system. Speedy Signs in Palmerston North did the signage.

Auckland based SRL Cargo (Singh Roadways Limited) is adding an identical duo of Hino 700 Series 6x4s to its freight operations. The FS2848 pair have the 12.9-litre Euro 6 480hp engine, TraXon 16-speed AMT, engine brake and transmission intarder, inter-axle cross locks and rear air suspension. The standard Hino SmartSafe package includes Vehicle Stability Control, ABS/EBS, Pre-Collision System, Adaptative Cruise Control, Driver Monitor and Lane Departure Warning.

Truck & Driver | 89

A 770hp Scania logger has gone to work with Richard Mariu Transport. The new R 770 B8x4NA logger is driven by Shane `Shady’ Haskell in the Central Plateau region fitted with a new Patchell shorts unit and 5-axle Patchell multi-bolster trailer. The 770hp DC16 teams up with a Scania GRSO926R 12-speed AMT with 4100D retarder and RB735 hub reduction axles, spring front suspension and Scania rear air suspension with built-in scales. ABS/EBS disc brakes, CTI, Durabright alloys, a fridge, LED light bar, and subwoofer are fitted. Signwriting is by Caulfield Signs and the R model was sold by Callan Short.

Ag-Bulk | Triple Road Train Tipper Drivers

Earning Potential between $150 - $200K per year About Ag-Bulk Ag-Bulk is an established Bulk Commodity carrier operating throughout the Eastern Seaboard of Australia. The fleet consists of all new Kenworth 909’s & SAR’s towing new Triple Road Train Tippers.

• 3 Fridges • TV • Microwave • Invertors

About the Role We are offering opportunities for experienced drivers to join our team who are looking for Secure Fulltime Employment with High Earning Potential.

Benefits of the Role Hourly Rate with Load Incentives and Overnights Paid

Equipment All New 909 & SAR Kenworths with:

• One Truck – One Driver • Consistent Work • Permanent & Secure Fulltime Position • Immediate Start Available

• 620hp • 50” Bunks • Icepack • Bunk Heater

To be Successful for the Role • Have Road Train Experience • Tipping Experience (required) • Current MC Licence

Contact Shelley on +61499 003 603 for more information or submit application to 90 | Truck & Driver


Trailers • All New Tippers • Digital Scales

This new Fuso Shogun FV2651K driven by Kevin Grace is one of four units supplied to Ma Parata of Tolaga Bay-based Parata Ltd. The trucks are working on East Coast cyclone clean-up, roading and forestry jobs. The 510hp 6x4 has the 12-speed Fuso G330 ShiftPilot Gen-3 automated manual transmission and Fuso D12 hypoid limited slip differential. Features include Bigfoot CTI system, Ali Arc front bumper, CWS steel tipper bin, and Airplex stone guard and sun visor. Signwriting by Caulfield Signs and sold by Chris Holloway at Keith Andrews Trucks, Onekawa.

This new MAN TGX 26.640 is working out of Taranaki for Osflo Fertiliser/FBT, carting animal bedding supplies and chicken manure. The 6x4 sleeper with 640hp and 12-speed Tipmatic has 7.2t leaf spring front suspension and 13t HY rear axles with ECAS air suspension. It features a MillsTui clip lock aluminium tipping body with electric wet weather Power Tarp and tows a Mills-Tui Xtreme 5-axle aluminium clip lock wide belt trailer. The trailer has a full length and width retractable belt to unload bulk products without tipping and is also fitted with full electric wet weather Power Tarp. Caulfield Signs in Rotorua did the signwriting and the TGX was sold by Mitch James at Penske Tauranga.

Reddy Tranz has put a new 25t (GVM) UD Quon 6x4 on the road based from Courier Post Tauranga and working in the Tauranga, Whakatane and Opotiki regions. The CW25360AS is running in NZ Post livery with a curtain sider body and is powered by the 7.7-litre GH8 engine developing 360hp matched to the 12-speed ESCOT-VI automated transmission.

A Volvo FH 13 is the newest of more than 50 Volvos in the Penrose-based Fitchett Linehaul fleet. The 8x4 Sleeper carts dry and refrigerated goods North Island-wide and is powered by a 540hp 13-litre engine with 12-speed I-Shift transmission. The FH 13 features the full standard Volvo safety package including passenger corner camera and is equipped with a Fruehauf body and ThermoKing refrigeration.

Truck & Driver | 91
















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