Stoke-on-Trent-based general haulier RG Bassett & Sons has taken delivery of its first Iveco ECOSTRALIS. The company hopes the 6x2 mid-lift tractor unit’s ability to limit engine power and torque according to gross vehicle weight will help to deliver valuable fuel savings.
Joint Managing Director Ashley Bassett placed the order with local dealer Sherwood Truck & Van after trialling a conventional Stralis demonstrator within his fleet for a one month period.
“The demonstrator proved to be as good on fuel as any other tractor we operate,” says Mr Bassett. “It was enough to make us want to put an ECOSTRALIS through its paces on a longer-term basis.
“With all of the new technology Iveco has incorporated into the ECOSTRALIS, there’s the prospect of achieving tangible fuel-savings over time. If that proves to be the case then we may see more Iveco tractors joining our fleet in the future,” he adds.
RG Bassett & Sons believes the key to its fleet unlocking these fuel-savings lies within the vehicle’s ECOSWITCH device; a unique feature which uses the vehicle weight information from the ECAS / EBS system to limit engine torque according to the gross vehicle weight. This ensures overall performance in line with that of a fully laden vehicle, even when running light or empty – allowing fuel consumption to be minimised without affecting overall speed capability.
“The nature of our work means we regularly carry relatively light weight cargo in one direction, and heavier goods on the return. If the ECOSWITCH can enable us to consume less fuel when hauling lighter goods then it will offer some real benefits to our operation,” adds Mr Bassett.
Also helping the ECOSTRALIS to optimise fuel economy is a re-mapped version of the FPT Cursor 10 engine, which delivers reduced fuel consumption compared with regular Stralis models. Its EEV-rated 10.3 litre engine is capable of producing up to 460 hp and a maximum torque of 2,100 Nm between 1,050 and 1,550 rev/min.
As with all ECOSTRALIS vehicles, this AS440S46TX/P also features a EuroTronic transmission with a higher gearing. The transmission also incorporates a special ECOfleet mode, which automatically adjusts to the loading of the tractor unit to help fine-tune fuel economy.
RG Bassett & Sons is one of the country’s longest established hauliers, having enjoyed a family heritage in road transport dating back to 1897. The company operates a 50-strong truck fleet, including two 26 tonne Stralis 6x2 curtainside rigids. Purchased in 2005, both vehicles have just been upgraded with the latest Euro-4 compliant pollution control systems to ensure they can continue to enter London’s Low Emission Zone without penalty. RG Bassett & Sons also operates an 18 tonne Iveco Eurocargo and two Iveco Daily light commercials – a panel van and a dropside.