Volvo 2

Cheshire-based Boughey Distribution has sealed a five-year agreement with Thomas Hardie Commercials for the supply of Volvo’s new generation FH model which will be in production from next month.

The deal sees Nantwich-based Boughey return to running Volvo trucks for the first time in 11 years. Its current fleet is with Mercedes.

Boughey Group made its decision after running year-long fuel trials, operating the current Volvo FH model alongside two other manufacturers’ vehicles.

The new contract, worth around £11m, will be for the supply of 127 vehicles on a two-year roll-out programme, with the first 25 being delivered to Boughey by the end of May. A further 48 vehicles will be supplied by the end of the year.

Boughey, which is a member of Palletline, will be one of the first companies in the UK to take delivery of the Volvo FH 13-litre 460bhp Euro-6 model.

The upgrade focuses on driver comfort and safety and includes a 33-litre under-bunk fridge, a microwave fitted in an overhead locker and a flat-screen TV, to be located above the driver door which can be viewed from a swivel passenger seat.

Fleet engineer Paul Brimelow said: “We conducted extensive trials with the three vehicles over a 12-month period to scrutinise fuel economy and the Volvo vehicle performed the best.

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“Using telematics data and ensuring the trucks were consistently driven by nominated drivers, we were able to build-up a comprehensive performance record.

“Fuel usage for all three vehicles was collected and analysed over the 12-month period to enable us to compare actual fuel usage from the tank to the figure provided by the telemetry.

“We also compiled feedback from the drivers on the general performance of the vehicles.”

Other key factors contributing to the deal were the fixed five-year repair and maintenance contract with Thomas Hardie and its dealer aftermarket support, combined with a long working relationship with the firm spanning 20 years.

Steve Wilson, Thomas Hardie’s new vehicle sales and marketing director said: “Securing the order for 127 units is a fantastic achievement for the team at Thomas Hardie, Middlewich and I’d like to extend sincere thanks to Boughey Distribution for this significant opportunity and for the confidence they’ve placed in our total offer.

“We are extremely proud of how the new Volvo FH tractor unit has performed during the demonstration period by delivering high fuel efficiency, maximum uptime and ensuring that the specification meets the requirements of the Boughey Distribution drivers.

“Our business partnership goes back many years and we look forward to further strengthening this relationship over the next five years and beyond.”