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Trucking News From The Week

The trucking news from the week

The trucking news from the week includes a major merger update and the release of truck sales data for a number of companies.

Mitsubishi Fuso and Hino provide merger update

Mitsubishi Fuso and Hino Motors have provided an update on the advanced technology development collaboration between Daimler Trucks, Mitsubishi Fuso and Toyota Motor Corporation.

The vehicle manufacturer says the merger between itself and Mitsubishi Fuso has been extended after originally targeting March 2024.

Hino says the extension is due to the ongoing process of obtaining the necessary regulatory clearances and approvals.

Since May 2023 the four manufacturers have collaborated on achieving carbon neutrality and strengthening the commercial vehicle business on a global scale based on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).

The MoU also outlines a plan between Mitsubishi Fuso and Hino to merge on an equal footing and collaborate in commercial vehicle development, procurement and production.

Hino says the companies have been discussing how it can work with Mitsubishi Fuso to improve business efficiency and enhance competitiveness.

They have also discussed how Daimler and Toyota can collaborate on further enhancing their technology development capabilities and promote Connected-Autonomous and Automated/Shared/Electric (CASE) technology across Japan and Asia.

Hino says merger discussions are progressing on a positive note and that the strategic objectives and logic of the proposed transaction continues to be valid, with the timing of the business integration set to be announced as soon as a reliable timeline for the pending investigations is available.

Scania announces 2023 figures

Scania Group has announced a strong sales result for the 2023 calendar year, increasing both sales and earning as announced in its Annual and Sustainability Report.

In short, this included:

  • Scania Group net sales growing by 28 per cent to SEK 204.1 billion (159.2)
  • Adjusted operating income reaching SEK 26.0 billion (14.0) while the adjusted operating margin was 12.7 per cent (8.8)
  • Deliveries increasing by 13 per cent to 96,727 vehicles, whereof Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEV) amounted to 246 units (262)
  • Revenue from the service business increased by 11 per cent adjusted for currency Order intake increased by two per cent to 84,080 vehicles

“Like many other businesses, Scania is adapting to a world where the ‘new normal’ means uncertainty and constant disturbances,” says CEO Christian Levin.

“While we managed to stabilise flows in 2023 and deliver a strong financial performance, we are still working hard together with partners and bodybuilders to improve delivery precision for our customers.”

The Group was particularly proud of its fourth quarter, with vehicle deliveries increasing by eight per cent and the service business growing by six per cent in local currency.

Daimler pushes ahead with new safety systems

Stricter safety regulations for trucks are set to come into effect as of July 2024 in Europe, and Daimler Truck is preparing accordingly with its latest safety systems.

All new vehicles introduced since July 2022 have had to comply with these new standards, which requires driver assistance systems on truck and bus models.

“The EU General Safety Regulation is an important step towards accident-free driving – our ‘Vision Zero’,” says Rainer Müller-Finkeldei, Head of Mercedes-Benz Trucks Product Development.

“We have been consistently pursuing this path for decades and are now setting new standards with our enhanced safety assistance systems. And this with a view to the best possible accident prevention to protect drivers and all road users.”

The addition of systems including Active Brake Assist 6, Active Sideguard Assist 2, Front Guard Assist, Active Drive Assist 3 and Traffic Sign Assist have become standard on a number of models including the Actros model series, the new generation of the Actros L, the Arocs, Atego and Econic model series and Mercedes-Benz Special Trucks.

This all aims to lower the road toll on European roads, and eventually see these systems rolled out in all Daimler models across the world.

Image: Daimler Truck

Plumbing business finds success with Isuzu

Sydney-based business What the Flush Plumbing has found success with its trusty Isuzu NLR 45-150 AMT.

Director Brandon Navratil says he often needs to provide service at a moment’s notice, and the Isuzu offers maximum efficiency and everything he needs for the job.

“Finding leaks where other plumbers can’t, is what we specialise in. It’s always a satisfying moment when we find that leak and we’re on the money,” said Brandon.

“We’ve got everything we need on hand, and we’re stocked with the best equipment to get the job done.

“Our NLR 45-150 can fit almost anywhere, in any car space or underground car park. It might be a tight fit, but we make it work.

“Wherever the job is, it’s never a hassle for us thanks to our Isuzu.”

Image: Isuzu Australia

The NLR cab chassis provides a generous platform and a big payload payoff, including a 4,500 kg GVM and 8,000 kg GCM allowing for safe storage and transport, and a 4,000 kg towing capacity for extra machinery as needed.

At max power of 110 kW (150 PS) @ 2,800 rpm and 375 Nm of torque @ 1,600–2,800 rpm, the 4-cyclinder 16-valve 4JJ1-TCS engine of Brandon’s NLR helps to get the tools on site.

The light-duty truck also offers manoeuvrability in tight spots like laneways, driveways, and inner-city parking with a (kerb-to-kerb) turning circle of 8.7-metres.

“I needed the ability to get anywhere in Sydney but also carry around a lot of equipment and tow a trailer for excavation.

“It’s a lot more cost-effective for the business because we’re not driving back and forth to suppliers.”

Allison expands service network

Global manufacturer of automatic transmissions systems Allison says its service network is continuing to expand as its list of customers continues to grow.

Australia is a major market for Allison. Its three local distribution and service partners include the likes of Heavy Automatics, Penske Australia and Transdiesel.

“While our distribution partners are increasing their service capabilities to support the growing number of Allison-equipped vehicles in Australia, our customers will continue to see value over the lifetime of their vehicles as Allison transmissions are more cost-effective due to lower maintenance,” said Robert Cavagnino, Head of Australia Sales at Allison Transmission.

“We design and manufacture a quality product and work very closely with our customers to be able to articulate what is needed for the harsh Australian environment, aiding resilient vehicles to overcome myriad challenges.”

Heavy Automatics, which has more than 100 Allison-trained staff working across Australia, recently opened a new 1,500 square metre service centre in Wacol, Queensland in June. Located within close proximity to vehicle equipment manufacturers, this presents even further expansion opportunities.

Penske Australia also opened a new site near the Gold Coast in September, while Transdiesel has also settled into its new flagship servicing centre, a 5500 square-metre facility in Epping, Victoria.

Penske’s new facility. (Image: Penske Australia)

“Allison Automatics allow fleets to have drivers with varying levels of experience and with the drivetrain doing the work there’s less fatigue for the driver and more precise operation ability. This allows drivers to focus of the task at hand,” Robert said

“Allison’s superior performance encompasses startability, gradeability and steady acceleration, covering duty- cycles at higher average speeds.”

 

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