With a view to boosting its presence in the vital refuse and recycling kerbside collection sector, Isuzu has launched a raft of dual-control models it hopes will clean up in this segment of the industry.
Waste collection and processing never has and never will be the golden-haired child among the various essential services industries upon which developed societies depend.
When problems arise, as they have recently with changes in the international landscape and the much-publicised failings of significant local providers in the waste and recycling space, it grabs our attention quickly.
According to official government figures, in 2014-15 Australia produced around 64 million tonnes of waste, which is equivalent to 2.7 tonnes of waste per capita. This is roughly inline with population growth at an average increase of 1.2 per cent per year, but it nonetheless presents the enduring challenge of continuing to refine our waste mitigation and processing operations.
For its part, Isuzu Australia Limited (IAL) – Australia’s overall truck market leader for the past 31 years straight – understands that the waste industry is particularly demanding at every step of the process, and none more so than at the first step – kerbside collection.
With this in mind, the company has stepped up to the plate to offer what it believes the market is demanding – low tare weight dual control trucks with gross vehicle mass (GVM) ratings ranging from 12 to 24 tonnes in a variety of wheelbase lengths.
The existing dual-rated (available in 12 and 14 tonne GVM guises) FSR dual control model has now been joined by the FVD 165-300 with a 16.5 tonne GVM, along with the FVY 240-300 and FVZ 240-300, both sporting 24 tonne GVMs. The latter two can also be ordered with two distinct wheelbase lengths.
The FSR features robust Isuzu axles, multi-leaf rear suspension, ABS equipped drum brakes, an Allison 2500 Series automatic transmission and ISRI 6860 air suspended seats on both sides, complete with integrated belts.
Stepping up, the FVD and FVY incorporate Hendrickson HAS 230 airbag rear suspension – a feature Isuzu claims gives these units a tare weight advantage over competitor units.
Meanwhile, the FVZ uses Isuzu’s bullet-proof six-rod and trunnion axle location with taper-leaf rear suspension that’s said to offer excellent axle articulation over uneven ground conditions often present at waste processing facilities.
The FVD, FVZ and FVY all feature Meritor tandem drives, with the latter two sporting the heavy-duty MT44-144 unit which includes driver-controlled inter-axle lock and cross locks on both axles.
Braking is by way of Meritor Q-Plus S-cam drums with ABS on all axles.
The FVD is fitted with an Allison 3000 Series while the heavier two sport Allison’s 3500 Series automatic.
Powering each of the variants is Isuzu’s venerable 6HK1 six-cylinder engine that in FSR guise produces 191kW at 2,400rpm and 761Nm of torque between 1,450 and 2,400rpm.
The three larger trucks share ratings of 221kW at 2,400rpm and 981Nm at 1,450rpm.
Commenting on the new dual control models, IAL National Sales Manager, Les Spaltman, said the factory developed range has been carefully designed for Australian conditions and considerations.
“We are extremely pleased to be able to bring additional factory dual control solutions to market,” he says. “Many would be aware of the discontinuation of some of the more traditional go-to trucks in this sector. In response, we have a highly competitive, low tare weight solution on offer – one which ticks some key boxes for Australian operators.”
Speaking of boxes – steering boxes, that is – common features across all Isuzu dual control models include high precision cross shafts linking both left- and right-hand steering columns to provide a consistent driving experience from both sides.
For ease of operation, the instrument panel has been duplicated on the left-hand side and both sides feature pneumatic adjustment of the steering wheel enabling complete driver customisation and control.
The design also retains standard wiring harnesses with the additional harnesses incorporated on a ‘plug and play’ basis.
Fresh safety elements include interlocks for control change overs, safety yellow grab handles and steps, along with a right-hand side driver’s airbag and automatic cornering lamps for urban laneway safety.
“What we’ve worked really hard to develop with these new models is a compelling total cost of ownership argument for Isuzu,” Les says.
“Lower tare weights bring improved productivity and payload and when you add the commonality of parts we’ve developed with our F Series range, the equation really adds up in favour of our customers.”
The trucks have been designed specifically for Australian conditions and industry need according to Isuzu, which has incorporated proven efficiencies across its engines, drivelines, chassis componentry, wheelbase options and in-cab appointments, with the aim of making the dual-control line-up extremely competitive on a number of fronts.
“We know that when it comes to the waste and refuse industry, reliability, economy and durability are non-negotiables,” Les says. “We believe these new models have these qualities in spades.”