So delighted was the Swansea-based Gavin Griffiths Group with its first Mercedes-Benz rigid truck that it promptly returned to South Wales Dealer Euro Commercials with an order for a second, identical vehicle.
The new eight-wheeler’s most striking attribute is its economy – at 7.7 mpg when pulling a digger or other piece of plant on a three-axled, low-loader trailer, the Arocs is well ahead of the 6 mpg average achieved by the company’s other 32-tonne tippers.
The new truck is also a hit with its driver, while proprietor Gavin Griffiths has only praise for the back-up provided by Euro Commercials’ Swansea workshop team.
The Gavin Griffiths Group offers a comprehensive portfolio of waste management, earthworks and recycling services, as well as operating contracting and plant hire divisions. It runs a fleet of 16 trucks which is dominated by a Swedish brand.
Smartly turned-out in the company’s red and white livery with roof-mounted light bar and air horns, the Arocs 3248K has an aerodynamic StreamSpace sleeper cab and is fitted with a steel Thompsons tipping body. The truck’s advanced 12.8-litre, straight-six engine transmits its 350 kW (476 hp) output via a 12-speed Mercedes PowerShift automated gearbox.
The vehicle is currently on muckaway work. “The Arocs has bags of power and pulls really well up the hills, even when it has a full load on,” enthused Operations Manager Jake Stephens. “The cab is well laid out and the smooth auto ’box contributes to a very comfortable drive.
“Off-road performance, meanwhile, is particularly impressive, thanks to the excellent traction and the fact that the Arocs sits higher and has more ground clearance than our other eight-wheelers.”
Gavin Griffiths recalled: “Euro Commercials were keen that we should try the Arocs and they put together a very attractive deal. We also took soundings from another local operator, John Jones, with which we work quite closely – they run a few 8×4 Arocs and rate them very highly.
“I’m glad we went ahead because our first impressions of the Arocs have been entirely positive – the driver loves it and a fuel-saving of more than one-and-a-half miles per gallon is well worth having, which helps to explain why we’re now looking forward to taking delivery of a second example in March.”
Although the Arocs is the Gavin Griffiths Group’s first rigid with a three-pointed star on the grille, the company has always had one or two Mercedes-Benz tractor units on its fleet since 2010.
The new truck is being inspected and serviced by Euro Commercials under a Mercedes-Benz Repair and Maintenance Contract. Mr Griffiths continued: “Buying a truck is the easy part but it’s the back-up that’s crucial – what happens when it breaks down, as even the best vehicles will do at some stage.
He added: “We’ll be monitoring the Arocs’ reliability and the after sales support over the next three years but if it continues to perform as well as it is currently, and if the re-sale value proves as strong as we hope, then there’s every chance we’ll be adding more Arocs to the fleet in the future.
“Certainly, everything I’ve seen so far of Euro Commercials suggests we’re in safe hands. Its Swansea Service team are very accommodating when an issue arises and we need to get a vehicle into the workshop at short notice; in fact, they’re brilliant when it comes to keeping the customer happy.”