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The Mercury Cars Guide : August 29th 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009 Benz’s feat of frugality AMERCEDES-BENZActros primemover has setaworld fuel-economy recordona recent run in Italy.ThebigBenz truckwasdriven around the clock for seven days haulinga 25-tonne payload atanaverage speed of80km/hforatotal distance of nearly 13,000km. Its fuel consumptionwas19.44 L/100km,or the equivalent of less than 0.8 litres per100 tonne-kilometres.Asaresult of its feat of frugality, the Actros wonanentry in the Guinness World Records in themostfuelefficient truck category.Thetest in Italy highlighted factors that can increase fuel consumption in the real world: inadequate transportation infrastructure,a lack of trafficmanagement, incorrect vehicle configuration, inadequate vehicle maintenance andinefficient driving practices. Driver depression THEAustralian Trucking Association is calling for all truck drivers tobescreened for depression as part of the medical checks for their drivers licence, TruckSafe or fatigue accreditation.TheATAscall isa key recommendation in its submission to the National TransportCommissionsreview of the medical standards used to carry out the checks. Statisticsshowthat drivers with mild depression aremorethan twice as likely to havean accident or neat miss as drivers whodonot have depression. Drivers with very severe depression are almost six times morelikely to haveanaccident or near miss. Given the risk associated with depression, ATAchairman Trevor Martyn said itwasappropriate toadda screening tool to the patient questionnaire filled inbytruck drivers before they undertake their medicals. Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Get back to basics, fleet operators told V OLVO’S outgoing boss, Peter Hertinge, says Australian fleet operators should go back to basics to cut their running costs now instead of waiting for new technology that could still be years away from being commercially available. MrHertinge said that by careful attention to the fundamentals of running a fleet, like having the best equipment for the job, maintaining it properly, training drivers, having efficient schedules and using the most appropriate routes, operators could cut their running costs substantially. The best part, he said, was that they could do it without spending any money. Mr Hertinge delivered his mes- sage on the eve of his departure after five years at the helm of Volvo Commercial Vehicles Australia to return to a new posting at Volvo headquarters in Sweden. Like other truck makers Volvo is investing heavily in developing new technologies that have the potential to reduce emissions and slash fuel consumption in the future, but they could be many years away from being commercially available to operators. Volvo has outlined a massive long-term development program that will ultimately see it produce cleaner and more efficient trucks employing new technologies like hybrid drive systems, and all manner of alternative fuels, including natural gas, bio-diesel, and many others. But instead of waiting for these new technologies, Mr Hertinge said there was much fleets could do rightnowto achieve significant fuel consumption savings simply by adopting best practice in all with Graham Smith wheels aspects of their businesses. The outgoing Volvo boss urged fleet managers to make sure they were doing everything in their power now to improve the operating efficiencies of their fleets, and he said his company was ready and able to help them do it. In Europe Volvo has been work- ing with fleets to assist them reduce their running costs, and Mr Hertinge said his company is already helping local fleets do the same thing through assisting with training staff and drivers on best industry practices. By taking steps to ensure such things as their trucks and equipment are in tip-top condition and properly maintained, their tyres are inflated to the correct pressure, their drivers are well trained in driving for economy, and their schedules and chosen routes are the most economical ones they could use, Mr Hertinge says an operator could save an average of five per cent on their current running costs. He also urged fleets to consider reducing the speed their trucks maintain on the highway, a small reduction in their cruising speed can make a significant dent in their fuel bills. ‘‘We are trying to help our customers to use their fuel in a more efficient way,’’ he said. Making the same gains through technology alone, he said, could Commercial Vehicles All new ALLWASH PREMIUM TRUCK WASH cost billions of dollars in development for the truck makers and millions of dollars in investment in new equipment by operators. Sometimes I think we are focussing so much on the technology, which is so expensive to develop and implement, when we could save fuel without making any investment at all simply with different behaviour, different ways of driving, and different ways of setting up the truck, Mr Hertinge added. Froma philosophical viewpoint, he said, it doesn’t make sense to pour millions, even billions, of dollars into developing technological answers to our fuel consumption and environmental woes when there are simple and straightforward ways of achieving the same result available now at no cost or very little cost at the worst. We could probably reduce the fuel consumption in all of Australia by five per cent overnight if everyone did that, and it comes for free, he said. While all truck makers, includ- ing Volvo, are working hard to develop cleaner, more fuelefficient trucks for the future Mr Hertinge said he couldn’t see a technical breakthrough coming within the next three or four years. Hybrid trucks, or trucks run- ning on alternative, renewable fuels, will certainly come, but they are still a long way off, which in Mr Hertinge’s view makes it all the more important that fleets don’t lose sight of what’s possible to achieve now while focussing their attention on the future. Truckin’ towards a gas of a deal ADEALbetween VolvoandBritish natural gas specialist Clean Air Power that will lead to the development of natural gas-fuelled Volvo trucks is set to be confirmed in Europe. The joint venture will see the two companies work together to adapt the Clean Air Power (CAP) natural gas system to Volvo trucks in Europe, but the company’s Australian operation is keenly watching the development. Gary Bone, general manager of Volvo Trucks, said local interest in natural gas was high and he couldn’t wait to have the CAP option available locally. ‘‘There’s been a fair bit spoken about the Spring Clean $26,990 Tip Truck 2000 Mitsubishi Canter 6.5T GVM, 198,000km, ex Govt. 2003 Hino Ranger 6 10.4T GVM, 111,000km, ex Govt. 2004 Isuzu NPR400 7.5T GVM, 94,000km, great truck. SAVE $3000 SAVE $2000 $52,990 SAVE $4000 $43,990 2006 Hino Dutro 4500 4.5T GVM, 23,000km, like new. HOBART: 8C Lampton Ave, Derwent Park Shane Hilder Ph 6211 0504 A/H 0408 108 231 Cameron Smith Ph 6211 0500 A/H 0419 566 837 SAVE $2000 $31,990 14114dev LAUNCESTON: Connector Park, K’ Meadows, Ph 6336 9723 A/H Bevan Coleman 0438 668 670 NW COAST: Tony Pinnington Ph 6336 9722 A/H 0408 107 226 joint venture pending between Volvo and CAP, andweare well and truly into that process,’’ he said. Bone said the joint venture agreement was due to have been signed in the past couple of weeks in Europe, but at the time of writing he hadn’t had official confirmation of it happening. Volvo’s natural gas won’t be an add-on arrangement, with the CAP system simply grafted on to existing diesel trucks, but will be fully integrated and produced by Volvo as a full factory option. ‘‘When it becomes available it will be a Volvo factory-built system,’’ Bone said. ‘‘You won’t buy a normal diesel truck and have your fit-up done later on.’’ The first natural gas prototype trucks are due to be completed in Europe in mid-2010, andBone said Australia would follow soon after that. ‘‘The local demand for a gas alternative is quite strong,’’ he said. The Clean Air Power system is a dual-fuel system with a high rate of gas substitution. The natural gas enters the engine on the intake manifold, replacing the diesel, which is still injected through the regular diesel injector. A number of fleets, particularly in the west of the nation, have run the Clean Air Power system and have generally been positive about their experience. It differs from the Westport system that has also been field-tested here, and recently taken up by Kenworth as a factory-fitted production option. The Westport system is a dedicated natural gas system and only uses a small amount of diesel to kick-start the ignition process. Westport’s engine is based on the Cummins ISX diesel engine, but uses a unique highpressure injector to inject both the diesel and the natural gas. Natural gas is just one of the future options Volvo has up its sleeve in its quest to deliver cleaner, more fuel-efficient trucks. Bone said the demand for the cleaner Euro 5 trucks it can already supply had been quite strong, even though the Euro 5 emission limits won’t come into play here until 2011. Volvo has already sold a number of trucks that comply to Euro 5, and has more in the pipeline for fleets and their customers who want to deliver a cleaner, greener outcome for the community. Euro 5 slashes the permissible NOx emis- sions by 43 per cent from the current Euro 4 level. For companies such as Volvo that employ Selective Catalytic Reduction to clean up its emissions, the move to Euro 5 is a relatively simple one. In a further move, Volvo will also offer a cleaner Enhanced Environmentally-friendly Vehicle (EEV) option, which is a relatively simple software upgrade to Euro 5 trucks that can be done in the factory or at the dealer. EEVis a voluntary emission code in Europe, and trucks equipped with it emit substantially less hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, particulates and smoke. Volvo plans to offer the EEV option, which will cost about $5000-$5500, in the final quarter of this year, with full production early in 2010. EEV is an option for transport companies and customers who want to stay ahead of the emission curve and have cleaner trucks on the road before the mandatory introduction of Euro 6, the timing of which is yet to be announced. Volvo also wants to have hybrid trucks ready to go as soon as possible after they are available in Europe. The company says it will have prototype hybrid trucks running in field tests in Europe in mid-2010, with commercially available trucks following a year later. ‘‘We’ll be a year or so after that,’’ Bone said. He said the level of inquiry for hybrids from waste operators and other general freight operators with heavy stop-start type applications was quite high. GRAHAM SMITH from Kenworth. 20L $43.95, 200L $299. Available from CJD Equipment 56 Crooked Billett Drive, Bridgewater 7030. Ph 6262 6200. 1 D1830 Inter Hiab and tipper combo, low ks truck, needs tidy up for rego $3,750 may wreck 0414065083 1 To Advertise Your Business Here Call 62 300 500 or email email@example.com 2 Trucks Forklifts Excavators Skid Steers Sales•Service•Parts 9a Lampton Ave Ph 6272 3822 frmtoyota.com.au Hobart VOLVOTIPPER 2000 NH525 Cummins, new Hardox body and hoist, 18 spd Eaton, new tyres, Alcoa wheels, $77,000 (Hobart). Ph 0428 518 804. 0 MOREVEHICLES! There are more cars in CARSguide Extra. To find them, look in the index of today’s classifieds. DEADLINE FOR CARSGUIDE 8PM THURSDAY 1 Good cars at cheap prices! 93 Mazda 121 Bubble – 119,000km .......................... 02 Holden Matiz SE Hatch – 64,000km ................ 98 Ford Festiva GLX-i – 78,000km ..............................$6,990 99 Toyota Corolla CSi Hatch – automatic .............$8,250 99 Toyota Echo – 86,000km................................................$8,450 00 Holden Barina 5 Door – 52,000km ...................$8,990 00 Mazda 323 Protegé – alloy wheels ....................... 03 Toyota Echo – 63,000km................................................$8,990 00 VW Polo – 34,000km, automatic .....................................$9,990 01 Toyota Hilux – 2.7 litre ..................................................$9,990 03 Mitsubishi Lancer ES – automatic .......................$10,750 01 Ford Falcon 1 Tonner – alloy wheels .................$11,990 06 Mitsubishi 380 – new car warranty .......................$13,990 $3,490 $5,990 $8,990 SOLD SPECIAL OF THE WEEK 04 Nissan Pulsar ST Hatch, 64,000km $10,990 275 Main Road, Glenorchy Phone: 6213 3315 Brian Anning 0418 531 853 • Chris Wakefield 0400 635 446 • Allan Gebel 0428 729 659 Trucks, 2 —15 ISUZU 2006 NQR450 TIPPER 170,000 ks, tidy unit, suit tradesman, sale due to fleet upgrade, vehicle avail late Sept, full service history avail, $38,000 GST inc 0419 368 979 MB100MERCVAN 12/09 reg, gd cond, $6,000 ono. Ph 0400 291 917 1 MITSUBISHI EXPRESS, 1992, van, 5 sp manual 4x4, SH, ECI (4x4), white, off the road, 316,970 kms, 4 cyl, 2.4, unleaded petrol, dh9407, expiry 10/09, CD, tint/wind, needs new engine, $1,500, 0404868989, any time, BATTERY POINT, 7004. MITSUBISHI FM515 1986 tilt slide with Hiab, freshly painted, engine reco’d 12 months ago, good tyres, $35,000. Ph 0407 730 367, 0409 014 158 1 13912Jono
August 22nd 2009
September 5th 2009