Nixon Hire’s first Fuso Canters have given the national plant, accommodation and toilet hire firm further flexibility to tackle a wide range of jobs.
The five new 3.5-tonne Canter 3C13s were supplied by Newcastle Upon Tyne Mercedes-Benz dealer Bell Truck and Van – the German manufacturer’s dealer network is responsible for sales and support of the Fuso range in the UK – and are now hard at work for Nixon Hire’s toilet division.
Nixon Hire is using the vehicles to deliver portable, self-contained toilet cubicles to construction sites, music festival and sports event sites, and other locations across the North of England and as far afield as Inverness.
The company specified its Canters with DUONIC gearboxes – the first twin-plate, dual-clutch automated transmission to be fitted to a light truck, DUONIC provides smooth shifting and economical performance with none of the frictional losses found in traditional automatic gearboxes. Features include an Eco Mode for even more fuel-efficient cruising, as well as parking and ‘creep’ functions for low-speed manoeuvring.
Nixon Hire has not operated Canters before, and is finding its new trucks have the capability to tackle diverse tasks.
Transport Manager Graham Wood explains: "We provide toilets to a wide variety of locations, events and customers. Our workload ranges from delivering over 300 units to a single site, to supplying a single toilet for a domestic customer, so we need to adopt a flexible approach to the number of cubicles we can safely transport.
"The Canter’s cab-forward design, and the availability of a long-wheelbase chassis, has allowed us to fit a 5.0-metre body capable of holding eight cubicles, without needing a very long rear overhang.
"The vehicle’s 3.5-tonne towing capacity means we can operate at a gross train weight of 7.0 tonnes – each truck can pull a trailer carrying a further 10 toilets," continues Mr Wood. "This outstanding towing capability was key to our decision to work with Bell Truck and Van to fulfill this order.
"We can now carry 18 toilets at a time but the Canter remains suitable for multi-drop runs, which sometimes require access to tight locations. It’s a multi-purpose vehicle and suits both needs extremely well."
He adds: "We’re certainly impressed by what we’ve seen so far, while the response from our drivers has also been very positive – the DUONIC transmission makes these vehicles very easy to drive.
"The service from Bell Truck and Van has been excellent too – all our queries were answered quickly and comprehensively and the dealer was extremely helpful in arranging all the bodywork and add-ons, so we just had one point of contact to deal with."