Capital Gains

As operators across the construction, freight, waste, trade and essential service industries push to meet demand amidst a challenging landscape, it’s timely for all to stop and consider a piece of equipment on its overall merit. Those combination of features and benefits are what assists in building a compelling whole-of-life proposition. Some original equipment manufacturers and their distributors work hard to appeal to customers at an elementary level, perhaps spruiking a reduced sticker price, a series of periphery tech upgrades here or a non-essential value-add there.

The challenge for Australian businesses right now though, is having the ability to see beyond the advertising message, and to view a piece of capital equipment holistically, recognising the interconnected nature of its parts, components and overall value proposition – all premised of course on the application at hand.

Responding to growing industry demand for light-duty, narrow cabin, cab-chassis truck models with increased payload capacity, Isuzu Trucks’ new NMR 60/45- 150 has recently hit the market, adding an additional 500 kg payload to the model it replaces, the NLR 55-150. Released last month, the NMR model is currently available in two GVM ratings—6,000 kg and the car driver’s licence model at 4,500kg. There’s additional payload capacity on the 6,000 kg GVM variant, with a 500 kg payload boost on the previous NLR 55-150 model. Under the cab is the 4JJ1-TCS engine, rated at 110 kW @ 2,800 RPM and 375 Nm @ 1,600 – 2,800 RPM, offering a reliable combination of performance and economy.

The bigger picture begins to come into view when the boosted payload capacity is coupled with the NMR’s more compact overall dimensions. Be it construction and excavation, freight and delivery or a myriad of trade applications, Isuzu’s NMR 60/45-150 stakes its claim on the productivity front, not only from a payload standpoint, but from its ease of use and manoeuvrability.

It’s a smart example of a well-honed and fit-for-purpose engineering approach, which genuinely responds to the demands of a no-nonsense, industrious section of the light truck market. The narrow cabin feature offers adaptability and access for those negotiating tight city streets, loading bays and laneways.

This intersecting component mix offers payload efficiency with the manoeuvrability of much smaller, lighter truck models on the market. In considering a profitable combination of features, it’s critical to align a transmission system to the task at hand and as far as transmissions go, the NMR’s third generation torque converter automated manual transmission (TC-AMT) is about as ‘task-specific’ as it gets according to Isuzu.

While at times misunderstood, even by the experts, there are a range of benefits with an AMT that simply can’t be ignored.

In the case of the NMR, its TC-AMT has been specifically designed for a truck and not adapted from car or ute technology as is sometimes the case.

Gearing changes have been calibrated to deal with increased truck payloads translating to improved component durability and parts longevity. The torque convertor fight for additional take-off from a standing start, and the ability to manually operate changes via a simple push or pull of the transmission lever, speaks for itself.

Rounding-out the feature mix is the specification of Independent Front Suspension (IFS) on the NMR 60/45-150 model.

A welcome addition to many truck-specific applications, IFS increases stabilisation regardless of load, ensuring the ride is predictable and assured, especially through cornering and over undulating ground. Acutely applicable to utility drivers seeking additional payload and towing capacity, road shock and body-roll are all proven to be significantly reduced with the addition of IFS.

The resultant reduction in driver fatigue at the end of the day is another welcome plus.

With a sunset on the government’s stimulus measures a certainty, businesses will quite simply be forced to do more with less, if they are not already. Ensuring the best possible solution is applied to the challenge at hand is of course one crucial way to make
a dollar stretch further. No matter the trade application, Isuzu’s latestoffering answers demand and plugs a gap in an already comprehensive model light-duty model line-up. light-duty model line-up.

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