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Scania in Australia in 2010 – the year in review

Scania has enjoyed a very busy and successful year in Australia, putting into place building blocks for even greater success in 2011 and beyond.

Innovation across many spheres of business dominated the year, creating new services and advantages for customers. The full benefits of these new features will become more apparent next year and beyond.

Scania is placing more and more focus on becoming a supplier of Total Transport Solutions for customers, rather than simply a vehicle supplier. Scania is getting to know more and more about its customers’ businesses and offering more services in order to enhance their profitability.

The Scania Total Transport Solution is a whole-of-life concept that delivers pre-purchase specification advice for vehicles, financing options, fleet management tools as well as fleet monitoring tools, on-going repair and maintenance contracts, parts packaging options, genuine parts options as well as new offerings such as Scania Truck Rental, Scania Fully Built Complete Vehicle Programmes and Scania Driver Training.

From a product perspective in 2010, Scania Australia introduced the International Truck of the Year, the new R-series, with V8-powered models available as standard with the spacious and luxurious Highline Cab. A new range of Euro 5 emissions compliant Exhaust Gas Recirculation technology engines was also introduced with up to 480 hp on tap, available on P, G and R-series variants.

This meant that a full 12 months ahead of the legal requirement, every Scania engine (5-cylinder, 6-cylinder and V8) was available in Euro 5 compliant guise.

Scania also introduced the mid-size G-series truck, ideal for intra-state, single-trailer line haul, and construction and mining activity, while the all new Fully Automated Scania Opticruise two-pedal transmission control system was also offered for the first time, on vehicles up to 440 hp output.

Scania also took the lead in offering 6x2 prime movers to the market, available with a wide range of driver assistance systems such as Lane Departure Warning, Active Cruise Control and ESP available to prime mover customers for the first time.

The new Scania Fully Built Complete Vehicles Programme kicked off in 2010, with the launch of the Curtainsider rigid truck, Hyva Hooklift and Scania-Higer A30 school/charter bus, all of which either enhanced the company’s offering into the respective market segments or introduced Scania to the segment for the first time.

From January 2010, Scania also offered all truck customers taking delivery of a new vehicle up to four hours driver skill optimisation training to ensure drivers were able to extract the best possible fuel efficiency from their new vehicles, as well as offering driving safety tips.

Scania took a more structured approach to the burgeoning fleet market in Australia with the appointment of Rob Obliubek as Account Manager National Fleets during the year, and this role will be enhanced in 2011 with additional staff. Late in the year Scania also announced a new General Manager Mining Products role, to be undertaken by Robert Taylor, formerly State Manager for Western Australia.

Another first for the company was the creation of Scania Truck Rental, introduced in the second half of the year. Scania is the first to offer factory-run, factory-backed short to medium term rentals in Australia.

Scania Truck Rental makes fully maintained prime movers available from one month to 24-months, and will eventually feed excellent quality used vehicle stock into the market.

This project has met with early success with Scania and non-Scania operators taking advantage of the offer. Demand has driven a plan to double the size of the rental fleet for 2011.

Late in the year Scania opened a brand new factory-owned branch in Newcastle, the fastest-growing region in New South Wales if not Australia.

Perfectly positioned on the main east coast north-south run, Scania Newcastle offers a full range of services from new vehicle sales to a highly efficient workshop, catering to all Scania truck and bus customers, and also able to service trailer and ancillary equipment as well as all makes of trucks.

Scania has also raised its driveline warranty to three years (from two years) for trucks ordered after 1st September 2010, depending on application. For distribution and long haulage vehicles up to 75 tonnes GCM, the warranty covers vehicles for up to 800,000 km or 12,000 hours or 400,000 litres of fuel consumed within the first 36 months of use, whichever occurs first.

Scania also undertook its second quest to discover the Young Australian Truck Driver of the Year, with WA’s Rick Lockwood beating off 11 other finalists at Flemington in late November. Once again a high calibre field took the challenge of vehicle stewardship, road skills knowledge and safety practices and proved just how well young professional drivers are able to represent their industry.

With Scania poised to celebrate the centenary of bus making in 2011, the company looked set to finish 2010 on a positive note, with sales of vehicles in South America in particular making up for the slow recovery in Eastern and Western Europe.

However despite the lacklustre overall market, Scania orders and deliveries globally picked up dramatically in 2010, with the January – September period showing order bookings 110 percent stronger than the previous year at 52,452 units.

In total, in the first three quarters of the year, Scania globally delivered 43,549 vehicles (up 47 percent on 2009 Jan-Sept). Profitability was maintained throughout, with after-tax profit of 666 m Euros recorded in the first nine months.

Looking forward into 2011, Scania has many plans to continue to add innovative programmes to its offering and continue to work closely with its customers to help improve their bottom line.

“It has been a very busy year for Scania in 2010. We have been focused on developing more services for our customers to help them run their vehicle fleets more efficiently,” said Roger McCarthy, Managing Director of Scania Australia.

“We have been innovating new offerings, as well as introducing new vehicles and new technologies to ensure that Scania’s offer is as competitive as possible.

“This energy and passion will continue to gather pace as we roll into 2011,” Roger said.