Show ponies

All eyes turn to Bris­bane for the an­nual truck expo

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Working Wheels - JAMES STAN­FORD james.stan­ford@cars­

POWER and the planet were front of mind at the Bris­bane Truck Show.

The big­gest truck show in Aus­tralia this year was a cel­e­bra­tion of horse­power and clean en­gine tech­nol­ogy.

For many man­u­fac­tur­ers, it was the chance to in­tro­duce new ranges that meet this year’s new ADR 80/03 emis­sion stan­dard.

For oth­ers it was an op­por­tu­nity to thrill show­go­ers and po­ten­tial buy­ers with su­per-power trucks to haul the heav­i­est loads.

Swedish brands Sca­nia and Volvo went head-to-head with high-per­for­mance rigs pro­duc­ing the kind of power barely imag­in­able just a few years ago.

Sca­nia had an­nounced it would show the R730, the world’s most pow­er­ful truck, to as­sess de­mand be­fore im­port­ing it.

But Sca­nia Aus­tralia man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, Roger Mc­Carthy, has con­firmed the po­tent ma­chine will ar­rive early next year.

The R730 bears the name be­cause it pro­duces a whop­ping 730hp, or 545kW, and it also belts out 3500Nm of torque.

Mc­Carthy says the truck at­tracted plenty of in­ter­est and one cus­tomer put his hand up on the first day of the show, de­spite the $35,000 to $45,000 pre­mium over the next best model. He added that hav­ing the R730 as a hero model could draw more peo­ple to the Sca­nia V8 range.

When it comes, the Sca­nia will knock off the just-ar­rived Volvo FH16 700 as the most pow­er­ful truck in the coun­try.

Mc­Carthy tells Work­ing Wheels that he’s pretty happy about that. ‘‘ There al­ways has to be some­one with the big­gest num­ber. One of our com­peti­tors has been in that po­si­tion for a few years so it cer­tainly is nice to have that man­tle,’’ he says.

For its part, Volvo is happy to wear the crown for now.

The com­pany showed the first FH16 700 (for 700hp or 522kW), built at its Queens­land plant at Wa­col. Painted black, the mus­cu­lar hauler has been sold to Perth’s Ke­une Trans­port. It will have to work hard for a liv­ing, with the owner plan­ning to use it as a four-trailer road train with a gross com­bi­na­tion mass (com­plete weight in­clud­ing the truck and load) of 168 tonnes.

Volvo also had a spe­cial FMX con­struc­tion truck cab on the stand fit­ted with cus­tom hy­draulics that would tip the cab over to one side and then the other to give the oc­cu­pants an idea of how far a cab tips in a roll-over.

Safety was also a pri­or­ity on the Ken­worth stand where the com­pany an­nounced the roll­out of elec­tronic sta­bil­ity con­trol on more mod­els, in­clud­ing the T359.

This truck is used pri­mar­ily for con­struc­tion work and par­tic­u­larly con­crete ag­i­ta­tors. Ken­worth says con­crete mix­ers can be dan­ger­ous given the high cen­tre of grav­ity and the fact the con­crete is con­stantly mov­ing, mak­ing sta­bil­ity con­trol even more im­por­tant.

Ken­worth was also keen to show its K200 cab-over model.

The sig­nif­i­cantly up­graded truck has been pre­viewed be­fore but has just started pro­duc­tion. With a dra­mat­i­cally im­proved in­te­rior, new en­gines and a fresh fron­tend de­sign with more mod­ern shape, it was cer­tainly pop­u­lar with show­go­ers.

Mit­subishi Fuso rolled out its new Can­ter range of light-duty trucks. The en­gines use diesel par­tic­u­late fil­ter (DPF) tech­nol­ogy and ca­pac­ity has been re­duced from 4.9 to 3.0 litres to save fuel.

Other mod­els seen for the first time with cleaner new en­gines in­cluded the West­ern Star range and the ven­er­a­ble Iveco Acco.

Swedish power: Volvo’s FH16 700 is Aus­tralia’s most pow­er­ful truck fornow

West­ern force: The first FH16 700 has been sold to Perth’s Ke­une Trans­port

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