Transport and logistics powerhouse, Linfox, has taken delivery of 95 Quon 6x2 rigids for the Australian arm of its BevChain logistics operation with up to another six vehicles purchased for assignment overseas.
It marks one of the biggest sales made locally for the Japanese commercial vehicle manufacturer, UD Trucks, since it entered the market in 1973 as it looks to increase its marketshare in Australia, which at present is the fifth largest globally for the brand.
Key stakeholders across the Linfox, BevChain and Volvo Group businesses gathered with select media at an event at Linfox's Laverton Service Centre to celebrate the delivery where a sample of the 8-litre Quon CD 25 360s were arranged in freshly painted distinct bright orange provided by the Dulux Group.
The Euro 6 compliant GH8TA engine delivers maximum torque of 1428 Nm at 1200 rpm and is paired with an ESCOT-VI automated manual transmission.
Linfox Executive Chairman Peter Fox and Volvo Group Executive Vice President and UD Trucks Chairman Joachim Rosenberg were fashionably late to the handover ceremony, as they made their entrance in one of the new Quons of which 95 have been designated for operation in Australia with another six initially allocated for BevChain services in Thailand.
Despite the Federal Government's unwillingness to mandate Euro 6 emissions standards for all Australian commercial vehicles before 2023, Fox said all new commecial vehicles Linfox puts on the road met the standard.
“The Linfox fleet is one of the youngest and safest and environmentally friendly fleets on the road," he said. "These new vehicles out here are all Euro 6 Quons. We are leading the way in terms of setting the standard.”
According to Fox, the fleet, painted by Dulux in the iconic colour scheme of BevChain. will be used to take advantage of new technology to benefit Linfox's customers, its drivers and the people the company shares the roads with everyday.
“We chose the Quon for several reasons including its advanced safety features of Traffic Eye Brake, Stability Control and Lane Departure Warning Systems," he said.
“Linfox is extremely proud of our working relationship with the Volvo Group who are also committed to safety, sustainability and efficiency. We have a very strong, sound and deep working relationship with the group from Volvo,” Fox said.
Linfox will install into the vehicles its own FoxTrax safety technology with driver pre-trip inspections before the vehicles go out on the road to mitigate downtime and ensure its thousands of drivers captured on the system are not working on the road with a vehicle in an unworthy condition.
"We have an exciting expansion for the BevChain business and this investment that we make here today will allow us to grow with our existing customers and ensure we spawn new partnerships,” said Fox.
Linfox has worked very closely with UD Trucks, according to Fox, to source a fleet that is meeting specific needs of its BevChain customers in which a range of vehicles transport products to pubs, bottleshops and its customer distribution centres.
Linfox purchased BevChain outright in 2017 and its beverage network includes CUB, Lion, Coles Liquor and Woolworths affiliated liquor outlets.
Fox said the business had grown significantly in the interim as it became an integral partner to CUB and Lion, the top two brewers in the country.
The UD Quon units purchased will reportedly be ongoing and will provide full network solution for the beverage industry in Australia.
Rosenberg said the most important thing in the relationship between UD and Linfox was having aligned values.
"It’s important, as one looks at our industry, to realise that logistics is our lifeblood of our society. In fact everything in this room, everything that you have at home, everything that you see here has been on a truck at least once and many more times than once,” he said.
“With the need for more and more transport in our lives it means transport has to become even more sustainable. Like Linfox, UD Trucks at the Volvo Group at large, safety, quality and sustainability are at the very core of what we do every day.
“The relationship between Volvo Group and Linfox is indeed a special one. It’s a business partnership and at the same time for me it’s a personal relationship that’s built on trust which I’m particularly proud to be part of.”
(Image: Peter Fox and Joachim Rosenberg).