Leading hard landscaping materials producer AG (Acheson & Glover) has laid firm foundations for future success by commissioning the first six Mercedes-Benz Arocs tractor units to enter service in Northern Ireland.
They pull new SDC dropside trailers with rear-mounted Palfinger crane grabs, and are being used to deliver paving products and bulk aggregates throughout Ireland. Three are based at the operator’s headquarters in Fivemiletown, Co. Tyrone, one at nearby Ballygawley, and the remaining two at a depot in Toomebridge, Co. Antrim.
“Manufacturing companies across the UK and Ireland have undoubtedly had a tough time of it in recent years,” acknowledged AG Chief Executive Officer Stephen Acheson. “But business is on the up and at such times it is important to grow. This new fleet of vehicles is one of many strategic investments we’re making.”
The muscular Arocs range is purpose-designed for construction-related applications. “These smart new trucks are impressively robust and well-suited to the work,” confirmed Operations Manager Lyle Cairns. “They are also fuel-efficient and have been well received by our drivers, while Dealer Mercedes-Benz Truck & Van (NI)’s Dungannon workshop is conveniently located.”
The new tractors are all 6x2 Arocs 2545 models with ClassicSpace cabs and advanced, 330 kw (450 hp) six-cylinder engines paired with smooth Mercedes PowerShift 3 automated transmissions. They have joined a fleet of rigid tippers, tractors and bulk tipping trailers, tipper-grabs, and flat-bed vehicles and trailers with grabs, in which two other truck manufacturers have previously held sway.
Not only are the Arocs AG’s first Mercedes-Benz vehicles, but in another ‘first’ for the operator it chose contract hire as the acquisition method. They are the subject of seven-year CharterWay agreements from Mercedes-Benz Financial Services. “The rates are competitive, which was another reason we chose these trucks,” continued Mr Cairns.
“Once we’ve been running these Mercedes-Benz trucks for a full year we will review our experience. The evidence to date, though, is certainly encouraging. The Arocs are performing very well, and currently returning an acceptable average of 8.9 mpg, although these are still early days and the figures are getting better with daily use.
“Meanwhile, the customer support we’ve received from Mercedes-Benz Truck & Van (NI) has been exemplary – the Dealer’s Dungannon workshop team have been very helpful indeed.”
Established in 1960, AG was ranked earlier this year as one of Northern Ireland’s top 100 locally-owned family businesses. It has grown from a company that serviced customers based within a few miles of its original quarry, to one that employs more than 400 people and distributes its top-quality concrete products throughout the UK and Ireland for use in a wide range of commercial and domestic projects.