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It's Awesome

A1 Deliveries owner David Dunkley stepped up to an R-series prime mover for a new Australia Post contract and he hasn’t looked back.

Australia Post Gippsland contractor David Dunkley recently acquired a new contract for his A1 Deliveries business that required something bigger than the Volkswagen Crafter vans he’d been using, and the older European truck the previous contractor was operating.

So after studying the market and identifying that Scania had just what he needed, he dived straight in and purchased an R 500 through Scania Victoria New Truck Account Manager Mat Staddon.

David says he was impressed with the Scania offer from start to finish, and being a long-time expert in the financial broking market, servicing truck and machinery customers, he knows what he is talking about.

“I’ve been running the mail vans for around three years and acquired this new contract recently,” David says.

“I knew I would need a new truck, so I asked around the customers I have through the financial broking business and Scania had a good reputation for fuel use, safety, comfort and features. While I’m not driving the truck every day, that’s Bill’s job, we’re both very pleased with how the R 500 performs. It’s certainly got plenty of power,” he says of the 13-litre 500 hp engine.

David’s driver William ‘Bill’ Goodwin is a very experienced truck driver, who runs between Morwell, Bairnsdale and Sale in eastern Victoria, starting his run at 2.30 in the morning each day. He’s been doing this run for 12 years for the previous contract owner driving another make of European truck, but is very happy to be in the comfortable surrounds of the new R-series

“I can’t get him out of it,” David says of Bill’s attachment to the new Scania. “He is very happy behind the wheel. We haven’t put much livery on the truck but I did get a nice ‘Postman Pat’ image with the line ‘Bill’s Banger’ stuck on the driver’s door,” David says.

One of the critical criteria for selecting the R-series over rival trucks or even the Scania G-series was the spacious interior and bunk size. Due to the post run timing, Bill will be using the bunk regularly and David wanted to be sure he’d be comfortable to reduce any potential for fatigue at the wheel.

The R 500 is expected to clock up a modest 115,000 km each year pulling an 11.5 m tautliner trailer with a tail lift. Although most locations have the use of a forklift, the tail lift offers a belt and braces approach to being able to off-load anywhere. A typical payload would be around 14-tonnes, but due to the nature of postal packages, the trailer will cube out.

“With easier access to the mail depot at Bairnsdale and Sale I could go to a longer trailer,” David says.

“I specified the truck for tomorrow not just for today, and after talking to a lot of operators, they rated the Scania very highly on service, on running costs and on safety and comfort. I put a cab cooler into the truck as well. This is important for the driver if he’s trying to sleep during the day in summer.

“When it came down to the final selection, the Scania ticked all the boxes for my key criteria so it was a no brainer. And the truck has proven to be awesome so far. Plus I have the benefit of the Service Included programme which means for the next four years till we reach 500,000 km all the scheduled servicing is already taken care of.

“My calculations suggest that I’ll be spending around $65,000 a year on fuel and the new Scania should return about 2.9-km per litre, which is better than the 2.4km/l I was getting from the old truck. As a result I’ll be saving around $1,000 per month on fuel, so that’s $60,000 over the five years of the contract.

“I always say to my broking clients that the figures don’t lie, and that’s why the Scania makes sense,” David says.

“Mat Staddon looked after me well through the buying process, he certainly knows his product and his mechanical background impressed me too. He is also very enthusiastic.

“I have been so impressed with the Scania experience so far I have been banging on about it to my mates and my clients. I can’t speak more highly of it,” he says.