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First choice

When Mendip tipper operator Graham Hilborne found that he needed a heavy-duty version of the Volvo FM eight-wheeler for muckaway work, he turned to his local Volvo Dealer – Truck and Bus Wales & West Ltd. – for advice.

As a 20 year-long Volvo customer he had developed a great deal of trust in the local sales staff and was readily persuaded to look into the merits of the new FMX. Since putting his new vehicle into service he is already convinced that the move was a sound one. “There is simply nowhere that this truck won’t go,” said Graham. “Even with sites covered in thick mud and that’s saying something,” he added. Driver Colin Jeffries is equally enthusiastic about the new Volvo FMX and is particularly impressed with the latest I-Shift Construction Package software known as P+ and also with the revised lighting and mirror arrangement.

“I’ve had FM eight-wheelers with I-Shift before and always loved the way it performs,” explained Colin. “But this latest version changes so fast that it’s incredible! And if you’re ever in a really difficult situation you always have the option to flip into manual with no problem,” he added.

Powered by the 13-litre Volvo diesel engine rated at 420hp, Graham Hilborne’s FMX is equipped with a steel Thompson body, Roll Cover sheeting system, Edbro front-end tipping gear and an air-operated tailboard. A PM on-board weighing system is also installed in order to combat the potential for overloading situations which can easily be encountered in muck-away work.

“This truck has everything we need, including an engine brake that must be the best in the business,” said the new owner. “The FMX makes the job easier, is superbly stable off-road and keeps the driver happy. I really don’t know what more I can ask,” Graham concluded.

The first FMX in the Mendips is on a six-year maintenance contract and will be serviced at the Truck and Bus Wales & West Truck and Bus depot at Gurney Slade in Somerset.