Renault starts using drones inside truck factory

03 April 2019

Renault Trucks has begun flying drones inside one of its factories in order to make manufacturing and stock inventory more efficient.

The Renault Trucks Axle Centre in Lyon Saint-Priest in France is using the drone to perform inventory control operations which, until now, have been carried out manually by an employee using binoculars.

Using built-in mapping features and a pre-determined flight plan, the drone reads the barcodes on pallets using three scanners on its front. It can take an inventory of a location in six seconds, which is ten times quicker than with a manual system.

Photographs are also taken of each location, enabling any issues on pallets to be viewed easily.

“Working with our partner Hardis, we studied the positioning and specific characteristics of our storage racks in order to draw up a precise flight plan and program it on a table,” explained Vincent Marlinge, Renault Trucks Axle Factory Manager.

The device is completely autonomous: the operator supervises the flight plan rather than controlling the drone. Once the inventory is completed, the drone displays a visual indication of compliant and non-compliant locations, enabling logistics operators to focus their efforts on discrepancies with the information system.

MAN appoints specialist van chief for the UK

03 April 2019

MAN Truck and Bus UK Ltd has appointed Daniel Holbein to the position UK Head of Van.

In the new role, Holbein will have overall responsibility for the MAN TGE product range, vehicle sales, volume planning and all van operations within the UK, reporting directly to the UK Managing Director, Thomas Hemmerich.

Commenting on the appointment, Thomas Hemmerich said: “I am absolutely thrilled that Daniel will take on responsibility for the MAN TGE Van range here in the UK and in doing so join the Board of Directors.

“Daniel has been with MAN since 2011 in a number of senior sales roles and his knowledge of the brand, experience in sales, passion and drive will be invaluable. We all look forward to welcoming him.”

Daniel started his career with MAN Truck and Bus AG in 2011 and until 2015 had held key management positions in Germany, with global responsibilities. In 2016 he became Head of Price and Margin for the truck segment within Truck Sales based in Munich.

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ Caddy wheelchair conversion to get CV Show debut

03 April 2019

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is launching a wheelchair-accessible ‘Engineered For You’ conversion of the Caddy Life compact van at the CV Show.

The vehicle is built by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ Recognised Partner Lewis Reed, one of only three such converters to offer a wheelchair-accessible vehicle (WAV).

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles sells more than 2,000 WAVs per year through converters, with the new model set to be offered through the ‘Engineered For You’ scheme.

Available in short or long wheelbase, the maximum capacity of the vehicle is five seats plus a wheelchair, with the adaptations ensuring headroom and space for both rear passengers and wheelchair users is not compromised.

For ease of access, the model features an integrated TorSpring® lightweight ramp and fully automated rear entry system. Lewis Reed offers a choice of floor fittings to ensure maximum comfort plus a full options range. As a Recognised Partner, the Caddy WAV comes with a conversion warranty that matches the base vehicle.

Nick Axtell, Specialist Sales Manager at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: “Wheelchair conversions are an important market for us and we are delighted to be able to work with our premium Recognised Partner, Lewis Reed, in bringing its latest product to reality. The conversion is high quality, practical, reliable and offers great value for money. We can’t wait to see the reaction at the CV Show.”

Anglian Water adds EVs to fleet with Nissan e-NV200s

03 April 2019

Anglian Water has introduced 10 new Nissan e-NV200 electric vans to its fleet as part of a strategy to reduce fleet emissions.

The new Nissan e-NV200s will be used for Anglian Water employees who conduct more localised visits.

The company has installed electric charging stations across a number of its sites to facilitate recharging. Anglian Water say the new vans will provide an opportunity for the company to cut its energy usage and become even more efficient.

Stewart Lightbody, head of fleet Services at Anglian Water, said: “Reducing both fleet emissions and our carbon footprint are key for us. We were one of the first companies to sign up to the Clean Van Commitment which has been created by Global Action Plan, to speed up the switch to zero emissions vans. Our first 10 vans are another key step forward towards our ambition to be completely carbon neutral by 2050 and we are excited to see how quickly we might be able to expand their use in our fleet.”

All-new Vauxhall Vivaro makes global debut at CV Show 2019

The all-new Vauxhall Vivaro will have its world premiere at CV Show 2019, with the new British-built van now available to order in time for first deliveries this summer.

Vauxhall’s new mid-sized van will go into production at the company’s Luton plant shortly, and will be available in two lengths, three body styles and three trim levels. Pricing starts at £21,240 plus VAT.

As well as being an all-new vehicle, the latest Vivaro also represents a new chapter for Vauxhall’s Luton manufacturing plant and its 1,250 employees. More than two million Vivaro-type vans have been built at Luton since production started in 2001, and investment from Vauxhall’s new owners Groupe PSA will help increase the plant’s production capacity to 100,000 units per year.

For the first time, Vivaro will be available with dual sliding doors, both driver and passenger airbags, and cruise control with a speed limiter function.

The new Vivaro has a maximum payload of up to 1,400kg, which is 200kg more than the previous model, and a maximum towing weight of 2,500 kg, which is an increase of 500kg.

“As a British brand since 1903 and the UK’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturer, we’re delighted to reveal the all-new Luton-built Vivaro,” said Derek Wilson, Vauxhall’s LCV Director.

“Practical, comfortable, economical and packed with all latest driver assistance and connectivity technology, the all-new Vivaro is the vehicle that sits at the heart of our commercial vehicle range.”

Vauxhall has also announced an all-electric version of the new Vivaro will debut next year, so we look forward to seeing that model at CV Show 2020.

Win a £60,000 LDV electric van

LDV is celebrating its fourth year of participation at the CV Show by giving away a brand new electric van worth more than £60,000, with the lucky winner being presented with the keys on the first day of the Show.

In the lead-up to CV Show 2019, LDV is running a free online competition to win a brand new EV80 electric van valued at more than £60,000. As part of the giveaway, the lucky winner and a guest will be presented with their new EV80 at the Show and enjoy a stay at a five-star hotel in Birmingham.

LDV will be showcasing its latest range of zero-emissions goods vehicles on its stand (5D110) with different versions of the EV80. The electric van boasts a 120-mile range on a single charge and, more importantly, can be full charged in less than 90 minutes thanks to its high-capacity lithium battery.

The EV80 is already used by several delivery and utility companies, together with a number of city councils, in cities all over the UK.

Mark Barrett, LDV UK and Ireland general manager, said: “We wish all entrants good luck and we look forward to seeing you at the CV Show 2019.

“Alongside the latest range of Light Goods Vehicles, LDV will have a number of representatives from SAIC Maxus Automotive in China in attendance at the event, together with management representatives from its UK and Irish dealerships, at what promises to be another action-packed event.”

To be in with a chance to win, you need to visit the LDV website and complete a short survey, which can be done here: Terms and conditions apply and can be read via the link.

Global debut for Toyota at CV Show 2019

Toyota is strengthening its position in the light commercial vehicle market with the global debut of a new compact van at CV Show 2019.

The new Toyota Proace City signals a brand new segment for Toyota, adding the flexibility of a compact model to its business-focused range. More details and information about the new model, including powertrain, body styles and dimensions will be revealed nearer to the show date.

Proace City complements the expanding range of Toyota commercials, all of which will be displayed on the company’s stand. They include the larger Proace medium-duty panel van, available in Compact, Medium and Long wheelbase form and with a range of Toyota-approved conversion options.

Launched in 2018, the Toyota Land Cruiser Utility Commercial is attracting new customers who require a rugged vehicle with genuine off-road capabilities. It is available with short or long wheelbase platforms.

Finally, the all-conquering Toyota Hilux, which continues to impress with its legendary toughness and reliability. It provides the flexibility of three different body styles – Single, Extra and Double Cab – all powered by an efficient 2.4-litre diesel engine and offering a 3.5-tonne towing capacity.

The latest version of Hilux, the Invincible X will be on the Toyota stand at CV Show 2019. Further details about Hilux will be announced nearer to the show.

For more information about the Proace City and the full Toyota range of LCVs and conversion programmes, visit the Toyota stand in Hall 4.

Giti races into CV Show 2019

Giti Tire will undoubtedly have one of the most popular stands at CV Show 2019, with a race-prepared Volvo NL truck taking centre stage alongside the latest Giti trailer tyres.

Following four years of design and thorough testing across diverse fleet types, the new Giti GTR955 Combi Road makes its first appearance at CV Show 2019, with the promise of a mileage increase of around 30% against previous comparable products.

Available in 385/65R22.5 164K and 385/55R22.5 160K sizes, the new GTR955 Combi Road also offers rolling resistance improved by approximately 10% and better wet braking, both of which result in B labelling. Both sizes are three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) marked to indicate excellent winter and all-season traction and braking properties.

The new GTR955 Combi Road is one of more than 20 different tyres to be displayed on the Giti stand (4F55), which will be split into seven core areas comprising combi-road, long haul, regional, mixed service, urban, winter and competition.

Meanwhile, racing fans will be clamouring to see the Giti-sponsored Team Oliver Racing Volvo NL racing truck.

The partnership between Giti Tire and Team Oliver Racing saw two units competing in the British Truck Racing Championship last year, while Giti Tire began supply of its global competition truck tyre, the Giti Race-Tuned v1.

Another full house for CV Show 2019

Once again, exhibitors have booked out every available square metre of the show halls for the 2019 Commercial Vehicle Show, ensuring that the CV Show remains an essential event for any company running commercial vehicles.

With another full house of exhibition space at the NEC in Birmingham, CV Show 2019 has reinforced its position as the premier event for the UK road transport, distribution and logistics industries.

This is a brilliant result in the face of enormous political uncertainty on many levels, and is testament to the resilient nature of our industry.

When you visit CV Show 2019, you will be presented with the largest range of options to help purchase, operate and maintain your vehicle fleet. It’s all brought together under one massive roof at the NEC and it’s all designed to help boost your productivity and profit.

British CV production continues dramatic growth in February

28 March 2019

  • Number of CVs built in the UK up 53.5% in February, as 9,233 leave production lines.
  • Growth in demand from both overseas and UK markets, up 51.9% and 57.3% respectively.
  • Year-to-date performance rises by 51.3% on same period last year, up 6,241 units.

British commercial vehicle (CV) production increased by 53.5% in February to 9,233 vehicles, according to figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Strong market incentives ahead of model changes helped boost the month to its best performance since 2012.1

The number of CVs manufactured for both domestic and export markets posted significant gains in the month, growing by 57.3% and 51.9% respectively. Almost seven in 10 British CVs were destined for global markets in February, as demand from overseas continued to drive output.

Year-to-date, the market painted a similar picture, with manufacturing up by 51.3% compared with the same and particularly weak period last year. In the first two months of the year 18,415 vans, trucks, taxis, buses and coaches left British production lines. However, output is expected to slow next quarter in preparation for the subsequent ramp-up for new model lines.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

While the positive news continues for UK CV manufacturing, it’s important to highlight that this low volume industry is cyclical and experiences large percentage swings when compared month on month. Although both demand at home and overseas has seen double-digit growth, still almost two thirds of British-built CVs are destined for export, the majority to the EU. This signifies just how vital a deal that retains free and frictionless trade with the EU is for this sector.

Notes to editors

9,655 CVs were produced in February 2012