MAN multi-axle range build quality wins it for Oxon operator

Sand, gravel and aggregates supplier, Smiths Bletchington, has taken delivery of three new MAN vehicles for tipper operations. A TGS 35.400 8x4, a TGS 26.360 6x4 and a TGS 24.400 6x2 mid-lift tractor unit are now in service supplying sand and aggregates to the building industry.

Smiths has six MANs in its fleet of 29, although the company has said that MAN is now its preferred supplier of 8x4 chassis and that the MAN marque will begin to feature more prominently in the fleet.

Transport Manager Paul Needle and Workshop Manager Tim Norridge are impressed with both MAN’s products and aftersales support. “The MAN 8x4’s greatest asset is its build quality,” said Norridge, “it just looks like it’s up to the job. The straight beam front axles provide ample clearance height and, coupled with the light-weight Charlton body, we’re seeing an excellent 19.4 tonne payload. Driver feedback is also very positive.”

Norridge added, “Our local MAN dealer, Cordwallis Commercials in Eynsham, is providing us with good back-up with parts supply and any warranty issues.”

Smiths first MAN was delivered in 2008; the vehicle remains in service and is reported to be ‘problem free’. ‘No AdBlue’ EGR engine technology continues to provide a major operational advantage for Smiths.

Smiths places great emphasis on safety, and has fitted a number of devices to its trucks to promote the safety and welfare of its drivers, other road users and pedestrians. Bodywork is fitted with guard rails and side scan cameras. External audible warning alarms for reverse and left turning and close proximity cameras are also fitted.

“We are determined to set the highest standards regarding road safety, and have worked closely with the Mineral Products Association and its members to improve the safety of cyclists.” added Paul Needle.

With a 100 year history, Smiths has developed into a major producer and supplier of a variety of materials. These include sand and gravel, crushed and graded limestone, natural Cotswold dry stone walling and recycled aggregates.

In addition the group provides haulage, muckaway, plant hire and contracting services for site excavations and groundworks, as well as contract crushing. Farming and leisure fishing complete the range of business interests.