Commitment to the New Zealand transport industry is something that Volvo Trucks has demonstrated over sixty years of operation. MTD General Manager, Clive Jones reflects on the practical outcomes of the brand’s staunch relationship with trucking Aotearoa.
“It’s widely recognised that the Volvo brand is synonymous with safety. Everything Volvo does relates to driver and road user safety. I’ve seen some terrible accidents that, in most trucks, would not be survivable, and drivers have walked away. The safety culture is at the heart of our operations in Sweden and that has a strong ripple effect across all other territories.”
In addition to safety, Clive takes a pragmatic view of the next priority. “A truck is a business tool and every complex piece of machinery needs servicing and has the potential to break down – no matter how well designed and engineered.”
Referring to the national network of specialist service locations for the Volvo brand, Clive emphasises the value of local after sales support. “Truckstops after sales support is part of the package that drives up-time for our customers. The initial purchase price can easily be mitigated by savings created through exceptional fuel efficiency, product uptime, accessibility and lower cost of service. With 19 branches, there’s always a specialist mechanic within reach. Having a skilled workshop with a 95% first pick rate for parts really matters when you want to get back on the road.”
With trans-Tasman rivalry alive and well, one of the major benefits offered by Volvo Trucks NZ often flies under the radar. It’s manufacturing facility in Brisbane gives the brand an advantage over other European truck brands in New Zealand, both in terms of specification and local expertise.
Clive explains: “On-line customer modifications can be directly influenced by engineers and designers who intimately understand the driving conditions that the trucks are destined for. Volvo trucks are not just built to be fit-for-purpose, they are fit-for-conditions, fit-for-topography. Designed and engineered with our roads firmly in mind. That’s a huge win for us.”
“Optimisation drives down cost of ownership and there are over 2000 variant options and sub-options available on a Volvo truck. We have some fleets running trucks with just under 100 unique customer adaptations. This drives down whole-of-life-cost. We don’t build vanilla trucks.”