Danie Senekal will tell anyone that Iveco produces trucks which will work long and hard and won’t let you down.He knows: he runs them in his fleet at Limpopo Transport, which is based in the northern border town of Musina in South Africa.“You know, when we go out to the farms, the farmers ask me about these Ivecos, and I tell them they are brilliant. And I know for a fact that some of them are now looking to buy them too!”.
Danie’s business was founded in 1991 and his trucks run three times a week between Musina and other parts of the Limpopo Province to Gauteng, the Free State and the Northern Cape. They carry fresh produce one way and come back with loads like cement, building materials and equipment. “I’ve currently got two Iveco Stralis 480 Highways and I am about to take delivery of another two…that shows you how I rate them.”
Danie says he was first offered one of the vehicles as a demo, with an option to purchase.“It did so well, we went ahead and bought it. It’s been with us two years now without a major problem.”
There have been a number of things which have impressed Danie about the Ivecos.Firstly, the fuel consumption has been outstanding: “When we do a long trip – maybe 1 000km or so – and with a full 34 ton load, we get between 2.2 km per litre and 2.4 km per litre. Which is excellent. And in a transport business, the less money you spend on fuel, the better your bottom line looks.”
Then, another thing that surprised him after all his years in the transport business was the “exceptional tyre wear.“We got 245 000km on the first, original set of tyres which came with the vehicle. You don’t see that every day!”Also, he says, the disc brakes on the Ivecos, and their pads, also give good high service mileages. He recalls one vehicle going for almost 300 000km and then the only issue which emerged was a slight problem with one caliper.
Danie admits that is also because his drivers are well-trained and experienced…and they look after their vehicles.“But still, that is amazing wear from the brakes…” On the subject of drivers, Danie says his people love the Ivecos: “They fight to drive them!” That’s because the Iveco “is just such a beautiful vehicle to drive, it easy, it’s comfortable…”Although the Stralis Highway is supposed to be only for highways, Danie says “they can do quite a lot of rough stuff. “They go into the farms on dirt roads with no problem.”
All of that is backed up by “fantastic service” that Limpopo Transport gets from its Iveco dealer, BB Truck and Tractor in Polokwane.“They are always prepared to be flexible when it comes to pricing and they come through when it comes to servicing.”He has had very few problems, says Danie, but the ones he has had, have been sorted out quickly: “They come out straight away. They know that we can’t afford to have a truck off the road.”
Not only that, but the people at BB Truck and Tractor are “really nice people”, says Danie.“These Iveco trucks are under-rated by some people. But I think they are very good quality and the back-up they give is first class.”