In for the long haul
to be seen running local B-double applications, such as hauling containers from the wharves, than longhaul freight runs.
The real heavyweights running 370-plus kW will still rule in long haul, but the Hino could be used as a back-up B-double when a regular truck goes down, while running local work as a prime application.
Hino also wants a 370kW or more horsepower model, and this is under development back in Japan.
The 18-speed Roadranger is the only gearbox choice in the SS 2848, perhaps its greatest drawback in a market that is moving more and more towards automatic and automated manual gearboxes.
Hino says it will have an automated manual gearbox within a year, and that will make the SS 2848 more appealing to operators.
With the dire shortage of drivers who can competently shuffle a constant-mesh gearbox like the Roadranger’s, fleets are looking for automated or automatic transmissions in their trucks.
It not only makes it easier to find drivers, it saves heaps on maintenance and repairs caused by the lack of skill in changing gears.
Hino plans to solve the problem by releasing a ZF automated transmission within 12 months.
On the road the big Hino is quiet and comfortable, the ride smooth and supple, and though there’s none of the bling that the big Americanbased trucks can boast, there’s not much missing from the Hino cab.
It’s well laid-out, roomy, wellequipped, with a reasonably-sized bunk, perfect for round town work.
It’s reasonably priced compared to the established heavy haulers, and with its 30,000km service intervals it makes a compelling case for a costeffective truck that gets the job done.