The DAF LF 7.5 tonne model will be one of the first Euro 6 compliant trucks in the Royal Mail fleet and is the latest of more than 700 PACCAR bodied vehicles which have been supplied to the UK's postal service.
Leyland Truck's in-house bodybuilding capability, which is unique amongst major European truck manufacturers, gives DAF the ability to offer its customers a complete vehicle which fully complies with EC Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA) regulations. These came into effect last year for vehicle manufacturers but will not apply to the vehicle bodybuilding industry until October.
As a result of meeting these regulations DAF LF vehicles equipped with PACCAR bodies built exclusively in the UK by Leyland Trucks are now being sold in all EU member states without the need to meet regulations in individual countries. Outside the UK the body being sold is the advanced aerodynamic Aerobody which is designed to enhance fuel consumption and is also available in the UK. The Aerobody has shown fuel savings of 5% in real operating conditions and up to 8% when the vehicle is running at normal cruising speed of 53 mph compared to a conventional body.
Paul Gatti, Director of Fleet and Maintenance Services, and Rob Cooksley, Procurement Director - Vehicles, Assets and Logistics, at Royal Mail, received the truck from Ron Augustyn, managing director of Leyland Trucks and DAF Trucks UK managing director Ray Ashworth. Both DAF Trucks and Leyland Trucks are subsidiaries of PACCAR Inc, one of the world's leading truck makers.
Ron Augustyn, Leyland Trucks managing director, comments: "Our ability to produce PACCAR bodies in-house can significantly reduce delivery lead times. From the first part of the production process, where we assemble the truck chassis, to a finished vehicle coming off the line fully bodied, painted, lettered and ready for the road can take as little as 24 hours.
"In the case of the trucks we are building and bodying for Royal Mail, we complete the vehicle, livery it, organise its registration and taxation and deliver it direct to a designated depot where it immediately enters service.
"Since we started the PACCAR body programme we have extended the range available so that today it covers both box bodies and curtain siders up to 18 tonnes gross weight. The latest LF Aerobody now going to the European Continent is available with internal lengths of 6.75 and 7.05 metres, suitable for carrying 16 or 17 Euro pallets, and comes as standard with a 1,500 kg capacity tail-lift, also fitted at Leyland", said Ron Augustyn.
"This puts DAF well ahead of the game in terms of being able to provide our customers with a vehicle that in its entirety is built to the exacting quality standards for which Leyland Trucks is renowned and which fully meets WVTA requirements," says Ray Ashworth, MD of DAF Trucks.
"Not only does this ensure consistency throughout in the fit and finish of these factory-bodied vehicles, but also in any ancillary equipment fitted," he adds. "And the customer has only one point of contact for sales and specification issues".
The vehicle being handed over to Royal Mail is a 7.5 tonne LF model fitted with a 5.15 metre long box body and a cantilever tail-lift. Power is from the highly economical 4.5 litre, four-cylinder PACCAR PX-5 Euro 6 engine rated at 112 kW (152 bhp) and which is Euro 6 emissions compliant.
The highly successful LF model has been completely renewed in line with DAF's Euro 6 product line-up. Designed and built exclusively at Leyland for DAF, this is by far the best selling light/medium weight truck in the UK market and last year accounted for 42% of sales in this important sector of the market.