Archbold Logistics invests in 16 DAF XF tractor units

Haulage and logistics business Archbold Logistics has taken delivery of 16 new DAF XF 480FTG tractor units, including one with special livery to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the company.

The 16 DAF XF 480FTG tractor units have mid-lift and steer axles are replacements for non-DAF units.

Part of the reason Archbold Logistics have moved to the Dutch marque is its fuel efficiency – 0.5mpg better than its previous trucks – which was shown by the demonstrator the company had. “We all know demonstrators come out to us highly-prepared to deliver their very best performance,” said Archbold Logistics’ managing director, Alan Maher.

“What we saw did impress us however, so after detailed discussions with DAF and the local dealer F&G Commercials in Manchester [recently acquired by Motus Group], we decided to place this order. It’s a significant change for us, but I’m delighted to say the initial fuel economy is being continued across all the new trucks and, as we’d expect, they are even improving on it as they bed in.”

The first DAF XF on the fleet has been liveried with what Maher describes as a ‘retro’ Archbold livery, to mark the family-owned company’s 100th year in business. The remaining 15 DAFs are all being liveried in a new updated ‘2020’ livery, with the rest of the Archbold fleet to follow as further additions and renewals come on-stream.

The operator runs its fleet vehicles on a five-year cycle, so conducts a full five-year cost analysis on all the key factors as a central part of its purchasing programme. “We never look at primary capital cost alone,” says Maher, “though of course that’s an important element of any purchase. As important to us when looking at the DAFs, as opposed to continuing with incumbent marques, were things like fuel economy, warranty, R&M packages, residual values, driver acceptance and a host of other variables.

“At the end of the day, we realised DAF was winning the argument, and it was clinched for us by the support levels we were promised – and have subsequently been getting – from F&G.”

DAF and F&G’s driver training package was another factor in the purchase, Maher added. While Archbold Logistics has its own driver training in place, DAF and F&G offered an additional package that included full days of induction and practical on-the-road training for drivers taking on the DAFs, and also full driver-trainer training for Archbold Logistics’ own man. “It has been a great plus, and it is showing in both fuel and efficiency across the new trucks,” he said.

In addition, the drivers’ reaction to the new DAF fleet has been ‘extremely positive’, with the Super Space Cab winning immediate approvals, and overall power and performance of the XF 480FTG simply adding to those approval ratings.

Some the new DAF truck are being acquired through Paccar Finance on five-year deals, and all have DAF two-year R&M packages and a third-year driveline warranty. They are being fitted with forward and rear-facing cameras recommended by F&G Commercials before delivery, and a proprietary telematics system already in place on the Archbold Logistics fleet, which links to the operator’s traffic office systems for overall fleet monitoring and management.

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Dan Parton
Dan Parton
Dan Parton is a former editor of Truck & Driver, the UK’s biggest selling truck magazine. He is now writes for The Van Expert and The Truck Expert.

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