Having visited the Schmitz Cargobull stand at this year's Commercial Vehicle Show in Birmingham, Cummins Ltd, the UK subsidiary of Cummins Inc – the world's largest designer and manufacturer of diesel engines, has taken the decision to replace its entire trailer fleet with products from the Schmitz Cargobull curtainsider range.
Six Schmitz Cargobull Freepost curtainsider trailers will be delivered in August. They will be used to collect components from Cummins' various UK-based suppliers and deliver them to the company's warehouse facility at Daventry where engine parts are stored prior to shipment to the Cummins factory approximately one mile away. Components are delivered to the plant on a just in time basis directly to the production line, so trailer reliability was a key influence on Cummins' buying decision.
Cummins' existing trailer fleet had been rented but, with the fleet ageing and breakdowns becoming more of a problem, the company decided to look around for a product that offered the kind of durability that it needed.
Paul Woodcock, Cummins Engines' freight analyst, commented: “I visited the Commercial Vehicle show with the intention of reviewing the trailers on the market and was particularly impressed with the Schmitz Cargobull product. I was looking for a unit that would stand the test of time and, with its bolted and galvanized chassis, the Freepost curtainsider comes with a ten year anti-corrosion warranty as standard.”
The Freepost curtainsider had to undergo a number of modifications to meet Cummins' needs. For example, the curtains specified are armored for extra security and strength, while a hardwood floor has been fitted for additional durability. The floor upgrade was essential as most of the engine components transported through Cummins' supply chain are held in metal stillages. In the past, the feet of the stillages had caused ruts, dents and splits in the floors of the company's previous trailer fleet.
“Schmitz Cargobull not only worked hard to come up with right specification of trailer for our needs, but they were also able to deliver the product at the right price within the shortest time frame,” added Paul Woodcock.
Schmitz Cargobull is supplying the trailer fleet on a three year contract rental deal with the option for Cummins to extend the contract to a full five years should they choose to do so.
Andrew Morley, Schmitz Cargobull's sales and marketing director, commented: “The CV show was a superb event for us and provided an excellent platform to remind companies such as Cummins that the Schmitz Cargobull group is the biggest manufacturer and supplier of semi-trailers in Europe. Sales of our curtainsider products have increased dramatically over the last 18 months and we expect this trend to continue.”
Schmitz Cargobull (UK) Ltd is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the German-owned Schmitz Group, the biggest manufacturer and supplier of semi-trailers in Europe. The Group produced some 50,000 units during the 2006/7 business year at manufacturing plants in Germany, Spain, Lithuania and Great Britain. This figure is forecast to rise to 100,000 units by 2010. The UK factory is situated at Harelaw, County Durham and employs over 350 personnel involved in the design, manufacture and sales of refrigerated, dry freight and curtain-sided semi-trailers specifically for the UK and Eire markets.