Thursday, April 20, 2017

Trucks: Volvo Trucks Malaysia Unveils the Volvo FH Series of Trucks for the Malaysian Market - We Test Drive The Volvo FH13

Volvo Trucks Malaysia has unveiled the Volvo FH Series of Prime Movers. This is the premium flagship truck for Volvo Trucks in Malaysia. With this new range of trucks, the marque now offers best-in-class fuel economy, reliability and safety. Built for long-haul regional distribution and with superior torque and power, the Volvo FH Series is highly capable of handling deliveries of over-sized loads over long distances.

The Volvo FH Series was first launched globally in 2012 and then, in some parts of Asia in 2014. It has only now officially made its way in Malaysia. Prior to this, Volvo Trucks Malaysia's most top of the range product was its FM series of trucks. Whilst actually good enough for most transporters here, there was still a small niche to be filled by those that wanted something over an above what was offered by the FM series.

And here we have the Volvo FH. The 'H' almost certainly stands for 'High' for high cabin or FM for 'medium' cabin. What you can see at first glance is the fact that it is a tall truck. Taller than the FM. It offers better all round visibility because of its more commanding driving position.

Inside it, you get two different types of engines, the FH13 with its turbodiesel 13liter engine (usually in 440hp and over 2200Nm torque) and the turbodiesel FH16 with its larger 16liter engine (with a mid spec of 650hp and over 3,500nm torque). Both are partnered to the Volvo I-Shift with crawler gear functions to move really heavy loads.

Other interesting equipment include an loads of in-cabin space with sleeper bunk, individual front suspension (depending on spec), Volvo dynamic steering (VDS), electronic stability programme (ESP), I-Park Cool (An integrated parking cooler that provides superior cooling capacity without compromising in-cab space or fuel consumption) and many more. In fact, you can specify a lot of options for the FH truck.

The Volvo FH series is currently available in Malaysia from now onwards with a multitude of specifications. Everything can be specced depending on customer needs from chassis build, interior equipment, Volvo Dynafleet management systems and more. 

We also heard that Volvo Trucks Malaysia has secured orders of over 40 units of the FH so far. The FH16 you see here in the photos above is already spoken for. If you are a truck spotter, you may get to see it plying the route between Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan in Sabah soon.

A short drive in the Volvo FH13 440

We also managed to have a go in one FH13 440 at the launch (the metallic green one to the left). This time it was a small circuit minus a trailer. Just the head, basically. It was easy to drive and maneuver. The turning circle seems small and the steering very light. The Volvo Dynamic Steering allows minimal corrections even on rough surfaces. It basically minimizes bump steer and allows for a more relaxed drive. No need to fight the steering wheel even on uneven and rough road surfaces. It felt easy controlling the truck.

The I-shift gearbox, which has 12 gears, of which we only managed a few of them on the short circuit shifted as smooth as a semi-auto would. The throttle pedal is also progressive and the brake pedal does not require a hefty shove in order to make the brakes bite. Very much like how a car brake pedal works if you would want a comparison. This is even with air brakes.

The extra height allows better visibility definitely. It is actually the main reason why someone would choose the FH series over say, the FM series. When coupled with its large but very Scandinavian designed side mirrors, all round visibility is good. There is also a rear view camera which provides the driver to actually view the rear if the trailer isn't attached. It is actually there to assist the driver in attaching the trailer as its view is directly of the trailer coupling. 

The interior is as ergonomic as they come. Everything is within easy reach, easy to operate and well thought of. I must say that they only problem with the truck is climbing in and out of the cabin. Aside from that, all is good about the Volvo FH. 
 Note the reverse camera on the right of the photo above
 Controls right above the driver

PRESS RELEASE (and more photos below)

Volvo Trucks Malaysia Launches FH Series to Drive Customer Profitability

·         Volvo FH series breaks into the Malaysian market – and pushes the boundaries in safety, quality and fuel efficiency for heavy duty trucks
·         Through a focus on reliability and fuel economy, the Volvo FH series makes a measurable positive impact on customer profitability
·         Built with the driver in mind, the Volvo FH offers the best in class when it comes to comfort, safety and handling
 (L-R) Helene Mellquist, Senior Vice President, Volvo Trucks Sales Area International, Mats Nilsson, Managing Director, Volvo Malaysia, Lars Erik Forsbergh, Managing Director, Volvo Trucks, Hub Southeast Asia and Japan, Ian Sinclair, Product Director, Volvo Trucks, Jerome Wong, Vice President, Sales and Logistics, Volvo Malaysia, Law Ah Tiong, Vice President of Aftermarket, Volvo Malaysia posing with the new Volvo FH

SHAH ALAM, 19 April 2017 – Volvo Trucks unveils the FH Series, its premium flagship truck, in Malaysia, offering best-in-class fuel economy, reliability and safety. Designed with the driver in mind and built to withstand the heaviest and most demanding operations, the Volvo FH is the ultimate long-haul that sets a new standard in transportation.
“The Volvo FH series is our latest premium flagship product that we believe will deliver exceptional benefits to our Malaysian customers. We have a long history in Malaysia and the addition of the Volvo FH to our product line not only strengthens our current leading position but also puts us in a good place to take advantage of future opportunities in long-haul transport,” said Mats Nilsson, Managing Director of Volvo Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. 
Built for long-haul regional distribution and with superior torque and power, the Volvo FH series is highly capable of handling deliveries of over-sized loads over long distances. Equipped with technology that creates ultimate onboard safety, a more economical driveline and high uptime, the Volvo FH series pushes the limits on what a premium truck can offer. 

“The Volvo FH has been driving progress for our customers and our company for more than 20 years. It is one of the most valuable products in our offering and the embodiment of our core values—quality, safety and environmental care. The introduction of the FH series raises the bar in innovative trucking solutions in Malaysia and gives our customers the golden opportunity to improve their productivity,” said HelĂ©ne Mellquist, Senior Vice President of Volvo Trucks International.
Superior handling
The Volvo FH offers superior handling made possible with the revolutionary Volvo Dynamic Steering (VDS) technology that provides perfect steering stability at high speeds and total control at low speeds. This makes the truck less sensitive to crosswinds and very stable on uneven roads.
The Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) efficiently reduces the risk of skidding and rollovers. In risky situations, this feature engages itself by instantly reducing engine power and braking the truck and trailer.

Equipped with Volvo-patented stabilisers, shock absorbers that transfer load stress to the centre of the chassis and a suspension feature which prevents vibrations from spreading through the truck, Volvo FH takes handling to unsurpassed levels in the trucking industry. 

New technologies to maximize profitability
There is no doubt that fuel economy is one of the highest priorities for haulage firms today.  The Volvo FH is designed to save fuel and a number of components including the I-Shift with crawler gears make this truck one of the most fuel efficient in the world.
“Thanks to a transmission ratio of up to 32:1 (and up to 37:1 in reverse), I-Shift with crawler gears lets the truck move at speeds as low as 0.5-2 km/h providing total control and precision.  This results in better gearing, increased uptime and the ability to avoid accidents that can ruin your day and your productivity,” says Andrew Low, Product Manager, Volvo Trucks. 
Safety in a variety of ways
The all-new cab structure of the Volvo FH has undergone over a thousand simulated crashes in Sweden. This exceeds what any authority requires and Volvo Trucks does this with only one objective in mind: to create a truck that is as safe as possible for the driver, passengers and other road users. 
Several key areas were in focus when designing the Volvo FH; with one of the largest cab volumes on the market, the truck provides an optimised working environment and relaxation area for the driver with a standing height of 220 centimeters.

The A-pillars, door and floor structure are all designed, together with the windscreen being bonded in place, to provide the best possible protection for the driver. The skylight, which floods the cab with natural light, also doubles as an escape hatch in the event of an accident. 

The unique rear view mirror design and declining door panel all help contribute to the best visibility for a truck of this category and make the Volvo FH one of the safest trucks in the world.

Built with drivers comfort and business profitability in mind
The ergonomic design of the Volvo FH allows good drivers the opportunity to work as efficiently as possible thus increasing their employers’ profitability. The Volvo FH comes with a spacious and comfortable cabin, a sizeable bunk, rear and exterior storages that can be tailored to customers’ needs.
Another new feature in the Volvo FH is I-Park Cool, an integrated parking cooler that provides superior cooling capacity without compromising in-cab space or fuel consumption.
The highly-anticipated Volvo FH series is currently available in Malaysia.
Volvo FH13

Volvo FH16 

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