With its gleaming silver paintwork and imposing GigaSpace cab, Eurovision Logistics’ first New Actros tractor unit from Mercedes-Benz looks every inch the fleet flagship.
But it’s not just the truck’s appearance that’s winning favour – after just a week on the road it was already proving significantly more fuel-efficient than other tractor units used by the Hull-based operator on similar work.
Managing Director Dominic Yeardley said: "Experience tells me that a truck needs a few thousand kilometres under its belt before the fuel figures start to look good.
"But the Daimler Fleetboard telematics hardware showed the New Actros averaging 9.3 mpg straight ‘out of the box’. That’s a very impressive figure, significantly better than any of our comparable vehicles. And of course, we expect it to improve as the truck continues to bed in."
Supplied by city dealer Northside Truck & Van, the 4×2 New Actros 1845 is the subject of a CharterWay contract hire package from Mercedes-Benz Financial Services. Four identical units will enter service before the end of November.
Eurovision Logistics runs a fleet of 80 trucks. The New Actros is its first Mercedes-Benz and Mr Yeardley praised Northside’s truck sales executive Keith Silvey for his determined pursuit of an order.
"Keith was very enthusiastic and kept telling me about this amazing new vehicle that Mercedes-Benz had developed," he recalled. "He invited us to the launch party on the eve of the 2012 CV Show – I don’t normally attend such events but I’d heard so much about the New Actros that I decided to go along and have a look for myself.
"I was amazed by the amount of research, development and investment that had gone into this truck and – if the figures being quoted were true – by what it could achieve in terms of fuel efficiency.
"I did my homework, which included finding a report on some independent road tests conducted in Germany that backed up the manufacturer’s claims. So with five trucks coming up for renewal, it was an easy decision to replace them with New Actros units."
He continued: "I was very impressed with Northside’s professional, attentive approach too. Managing Director Tim Ward took the time to visit us and outline what his company could offer in terms of back-up, while the finance package we’ve signed up to combines high service levels with competitive monthly payments."
Eurovision’s New Actros is now working on long-haul Continental deliveries and travelling as far as southern Italy, trips that can keep it away from base for several weeks at a time.
"The GigaSpace cab is as comfortable and spacious as it’s possible to get, which is important for drivers on this type of work," added Mr Yeardley. "We’ve also included auxiliary air-conditioning which works when the engine is off, for summer nights in Italy when temperatures can get uncomfortably high."