Like many road freight transport companies, SRT Logistics has faced challenges in the last few months due to vastly changed operating conditions. But with challenges, come opportunities. 

As a specialist provider of refrigerated transport and warehouse services to both wholesale and retail food outlets in Victoria and Tasmania, demands on the company have significantly increased during the current pandemic. It’s a situation that has seen four new Australian-made Euro6 IVECO X-Way AT 6x4 prime movers join SRT’s fleet, operating out of its Laverton North depot. 

The four new trucks are engaged in single trailer refrigerated work throughout metropolitan Melbourne, normally coupling to trailers in Port Melbourne that have arrived from Tasmania and transferring them to the distribution centres of Australia’s largest supermarket chains.

According to SRT Logistics’ Director, Brent Miller, the trucks operate from 5:00am to 6:00pm, seven days per week, with the drivers often coupling and uncoupling trailers up to 15 times per day.

As one of the sons of the company’s founder, Jim Miller, Brent and his brother Robert purchased SRT in 2012, but both originally started as drivers and it’s this time behind the wheel that helped shape some of the company’s criteria in purchasing the new X-Ways.

“The X-Way has the connections for the airlines and cab tilt on the driver’s side of the cabin. This means drivers can get out of the cabin and more efficiently connect or disconnect the trailer; they don’t even have to step up onto the catwalk, it can all be done at ground level,” Brent said.

“This makes the process safer, faster and overall just easier, especially considering that they are coupling and uncoupling so many times per day.”

SRT Logistics is no stranger to the IVECO brand having previously used Eurocargos as part of its medium duty fleet and more recently, four 6x2 Stralis ATi rigids.

Looking at the specification of the X-Way, Brent thought it was ideal for single trailer metropolitan work.

“With output of 460 horsepower and 2150 Nm, a 12-speed automated manual transmission and a full suite of safety features, on paper the X-Way ticked all the boxes for us. We then had the opportunity to access a demonstrator which confirmed that the model was an ideal fit for our application,” Brent said.

“The engine is responsive and output is right where it needs to be – why pay for extra horsepower when it’s not required? Contracting to the major supermarket chains, we also needed to meet certain emission and safety standards, which the X-Way easily does.”

Among the X-Way’s safety equipment is Adaptive Cruise Control, ABS brakes with Advanced Emergency Braking System, Electronic Stability Program, Anti-Slip Regulator, Hill Holder and Lane Departure Warning System, ensuring the trucks are brimming with active safety features. 

Again, recalling his time as a driver, the X-Way’s ergonomics and cabin appointments also ranked highly in Brent’s consideration set, and the positive feedback from the drivers is an endorsement that the correct decision was made in purchasing the X-Ways.

“The drivers have commented that the steering is lighter than on the other European brand trucks that the X-Ways replaced, and that the turning circle is great – important characteristics considering the amount of tight manoeuvring these trucks do every day,” Brent said.

“The pedal placement is also excellent as is the quality of the seating (air suspended, heated and with lumbar adjustment) and other cabin appointments, which make for a very user-friendly and comfortable truck, especially in the city.”

Delivered in April this year, Brent has assigned each of the new trucks to a specific driver, all of whom are looking after their vehicles with pride, while servicing of the new trucks is being carried out by Adtrans Truck Centre, which is conveniently located in the same suburb as SRT’s Melbourne depot.