Volvo Trucks will be kicking off this year’s ‘Truckfest’ season on Sunday, May 4th with a visit from professional ‘hard man’ Vinnie Jones to sign autographs between 1 and 2.30 pm. The former bad-boy star of the Wimbledon Crazy Gang may not be the referee’s worst nightmare that he was, but he is still expected to draw the crowds when he makes his appearance on the Volvo stand at the East of England Showground in Peterborough.
Vinnie’s reputation, reinforced by his film-acting roles in ‘Snatch’ and ‘Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels’, belies his real-life exploits as a ‘good guy’. When not on set, he works tirelessly for children’s charities and reputedly donated his fee for ‘Lock, Stock’ to Harefield Hospital where his wife had a heart transplant operation. In addition, Vinnie has recently branched out into singing with the release of a critically acclaimed album entitled ‘Respect’.
Members of Volvo Truck Nation, the company’s club for truck drivers, operators and enthusiasts, will get the chance to meet Vinnie for around 33% less than if they take advantage of Volvo’s offer of discounted admission tickets.
Also standing around looking mean and frugal will be a full range of top-spec Volvos all featuring driver-friendly specs.
Flagship truck on the stand will be an FH12 460hp 6x2 tractor. Its Globetrotter XL cab with Prestige trim is fitted with Volvo’s Office Dinette package that allows the lower bunk to be converted into a spacious seating area. The need to focus on fuel-savings has not been forgotten though and a full Air Flow package is also fitted, as is the revolutionary I-shift automated manual transmission.
Multi-drop and distribution drivers will love the FM9 6x2 Rear-steer curtainsider on display. Designed to reach the parts where only four wheelers usually venture. The hydraulically steered tag-axle is on a 6.0m wheelbase with standard chassis height and gives a turning circle comparable with a 4x2 rigid. The vehicle uses Volvo’s new RADT-A8 modular 8 bag air suspended tandem bogie which is available in three chassis heights to meet specific vehicle or chassis height needs. The Globetrotter cab’s single sleeper layout gives the driver maximum in-cab mobility and extra storage in place of a second bunk.
Keeping the tipper boys happy is an example of one of the latest FM9 8x4 380hp tippers featuring B-ride rear suspension, high-mounted brake cylinders and straight front-axles for maximum ground clearance. The driveline features the new D9A engine driving through the nine-speed range-change V2009 gearbox with low-shift forces to single reduction tandem drive-axles (RTS2370A) with a 3.4:1 ratio. The Groundhog ‘Superlite’ body is complemented by a steel bumper and a sturdy, steel deflector plate protect the engine from damage on site.
The final exhibit on the stand, the 3.4 metre short-wheelbase model FL-E 220hp with Partek skiploader, certainly isn’t short on driver-friendly spec either. It is equipped with the Comfort Plus cab package that includes air-conditioning, electric windows and central door locking, together with a dash-mounted 12-volt power outlet.
Another feature of the Volvo truck stand will be a rollover simulator, where visitors can feel the effects of titling the cab through 90 degrees, an experience not to be missed and one that also shows the effectiveness of the seat belt in such circumstances.
‘Selected Used Trucks’ will also be represented on the stand with a selection of trucks showing the benefits of buying a used Volvo through the Volvo Truck Dealer network. All the trucks on display will be for sale, with a representative on hand to discuss finance and warranty details.
As usual, there will be a shop selling examples of Volvo branded merchandise from model trucks, caps and posters through to ‘give-away’ goodie bags for early visitors to each day of the Show. An SMS text competition will also be in operation throughout the Show, with winners receiving a Volvo-branded prize on the day.
Finally, visitors to the Volvo stand can also find out more about the back-up they can expect from Volvo Trucks through an interactive activity centre. Here you will be able to experience Dynafleet - Volvo’s telematic system - genuine Volvo Parts and Service, Volvo’s Online services and their round-the-clock recovery service, Volvo Action Service. With over 85,000 breakdown cases handled in Europe last year, Volvo Action Service succeeded in getting 80% of all customers back on the road within 8 hours.Published 20 April 2003