When reassessing the make-up of its network distribution fleet, the 2011 Isuzu truck range ticked the boxes for The Canute Group at 7.5 tonnes and, most significantly, at 11.00 tonnes too. As a result, Canute has now acquired four new Isuzu trucks, comprising of three Isuzu F110.210 rigids and one Isuzu N75.190 rigid. These are currently working on a mix of network distribution operations as well as parcel and palletised freight for next-day deliveries, predominantly under the Canute Distribution banner.
This is the first time that The Canute Group has operated the Isuzu marque in its fleet and the reasons for this were explained by David Emslie, group sales director at The Canute Group, "Our development strategy has always been to offer our customers a genuine balance between service and cost, crucial to this policy is a continual review of our methods, equipment and infrastructure. Isuzu offered Canute an invaluable opportunity to introduce competitive alternatives on mid-payload vehicles and to increase operational efficiency."
David continued, "Having closely considered the commercial vehicle market, the Isuzu products are clearly well suited to offer diverse operations like Canute’s with improvements in both running costs and payload. Inner city transport solutions are becoming increasingly the most challenging for our sector and we feel Isuzu is well placed to partner Canute in this most demanding of areas."
Earlier this year, Canute put Isuzu to the test operating their 7.5 t demonstration vehicle on chosen distribution routes. The Isuzu 7.5 tonner impressed Canute not just with its performance and payload potential but also by the support they received from Isuzu Truck (UK) Ltd.
Such impressions paved the way for Canute to evaluate the Isuzu 11.00t rigid as well, since Canute has begun to increase the number of heavier rigid vehicles within its fleet as a result of driving licence regulations affecting the availability of drivers for 7.5 tonners.
"This is where the Isuzu range comes into its own," as Keith Child, marketing director at Isuzu Truck UK said; "The beauty of the Isuzu 11t rigid is that its compact footprint is the equivalent to many of the competition’s 7.5 t vehicles, but the higher GVW gives operators the distinct advantage of significantly increased payload. Within the Canute operation so far, the 11 tonne Isuzu’s are giving an impressive payload in excess of 6 tonnes. Plus, for operator’s peace of mind, just as we do with our lighter vehicles, our 11 tonners have 3-year’s unlimited mileage warranty too."
One Isuzu 11tonne rigid is fitted with a GRP box body and is based at the Canute Distribution Midlands depot in Coventry. A further Isuzu 11tonne rigid, specified with a curtain sided body, is operating out of their Nottingham depot, whilst the third 11t Isuzu is working on pallet distribution based at Purfleet. Also operating out of Canute’s Purfleet depot is the Isuzu N75.190 7.5t rigid, which also features a curtain sided body. All 4 Isuzu trucks have rear tuckaway tail lifts as standard.
During the initial trials, Canute was also impressed by the operational performance and benefits arising from the specification of Isuzu’s ‘Easyshift’ automated transmission on the 7.5t rigid truck. With the exception of the 11t Isuzu based in Purfleet, all of the new Isuzu’s have the Easyshift transmission fitted.
"The instantly recognisable Canute vehicle fleet is an everyday sight on our roads today and the introduction of the first Isuzu’s into their national fleet is a major landmark for Isuzu Truck UK. This partnership with The Canute Group clearly demonstrates the general acceptance of the Isuzu marque within the mainstream distribution sector in the mid-weight vehicle range," commented Keith Child.