Prime Mover Magazine

Volvo teases driver environment innovation on new heavy duty trucks

Commercial vehicle manufacturer, Volvo Trucks, has introduced new versions of four heavy-duty trucks geared around improvements to safety, productivity and in-cab comforts and technology.

The models include the FH, FH16, FM and FMX which represent two thirds of deliveries performed by Volvo Trucks.

The FM and FMX receive new cabs with improved visibility and larger interiors increased by one cubic metre to provide drivers with more working room.

By putting the driver in focus, Volvo aims to help customers recruit and retain the best drivers in developing new trucks that are safer, more efficient and more attractive working tools.

“We are really proud of this big forward-looking investment. Our aim is to be our customers’ best business partner by making them even more competitive and help them attract the best drivers in an increasingly tough market,” says Roger Alm, President Volvo Trucks.

An expected growing demand for transport is putting pressure on the availability of skilled drivers worldwide including Australia.

Drivers, a focus of the truck launch, who handle their truck safely and efficiently are now seen as an invaluable asset to transport companies.

“Responsible driving behaviour can help reduce CO2 emissions and fuel costs, as well as helping reduce the risk of accidents, injury and unplanned downtime," said Alm.

"Our new trucks will help drivers work even more safely and productively and give our customers stronger arguments when competing to attract the best drivers,” he said. 

According to Volvo visibility has been enhanced by larger windows, a lowered door line and new mirrors.

The popular linehaul FH model receives a new look with V-shaped headlights that have been moved outwards to align with the line of the cab doors which now feature the indicators which have been moved for aerodynamics.

Advanced safety features on the FH include descent control, a function that prevents unwanted acceleration on downhill greades by setting a maximum speed and an improved Adaptive Cruise Control that now works at all speeds.

Volvo has increased the front-axle load capacity on the FH16.

In many markets, the Volvo FH and Volvo FM are available with the Euro 6 compliant gas-powered LNG engine that offers fuel efficiency and performance on par with that of Volvo’s equivalent diesel trucks, but with a far lower climate impact.

In a widely seen promotional video, Volvo has stacked the four vehicles on top of each other in a truck tower which is reportedly real.

The revamped Volvo FMX, which has a new 38-tonne bogie axle to carry the weight of the three other trucks, anchors the tower which stands 15 metres tall and weighs 58 metric tonnes.

It is understood the majority of the special effects, including the truck tower with Alm perched precariously on top of it, were shot outside of Gothenburg, Sweden late last year.

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