Overnight express specialist, AJM Transport, has taken delivery of the first Kenworth K200 of an order of 21.
A second K200 is reportedly in the workshop nearing handover.
Delivery of the order is expected to be completed by the end of 2022 when the last truck is slated to roll off the production line and will include a new Kenworth T909.
The lion’s share of the order is set for deployment as shuttle trucks operating on the busy Melbourne to Brisbane road freight corridor.
For the interstate drivers the newest K200s will have fridges and microwaves and some extra bells and whistles according to Dennis Roohan, AJM Transport Group General Manager.
“We want to look after the guys who are away five nights of the week and also attract a better calibre of driver,” he said.
The Kenworth K200 is a tried and proven product in the AJM Transport fleet which, in terms of sheer numbers, sits around 80 prime movers, with a mix of Kenworth, Volvo and the outgoing Freightliner Argosy which some of these new trucks are expected to eventually replace.
Of the strategic benefits often realised from investment in the Kenworth K200 its ability to have multiple lives is singled out by Roohan.
“We love the fact that it can do a job for a number of years and then be redeployed in a whole new role,” he said.
“It can easily do a million kilometres on the long haul journeys and then be reassigned to Sydney to Brisbane or Sydney to Newcastle for another million kilometres,” he said.
Operations also favour, in the majority, a 26-metre specified Vawdrey super drop deck, a requirement the dogged K200, which is powered by an ultra-reliable Euro 5 rated 600hp Cummins X15, has no issues with.
“We know every nut bolt on them, how they brake, what they require at certain intervals,” said Roohan.
“That kind of familiarity means we can fix them really quick,” he said.
Transmissions on the new K200s are an 18-speed Eaton manual 22918B through a Meritor RT 46-160 tandem rear drive axle.
Roohan said he is looking forward to the new Kenworth K220 which has only been teased so far by the Melbourne-based OEM.
He has been promised one in the not-too-distant future.
Now nearing the midpoint of 2022, the business, according to Roohan, has never been busier hence the necessity for additional mobile assets.
He said having a good forward order in the bank has paid dividends in terms of having reliable new equipment to meet the contractual demands of the moment.
“I can’t see myself having to trade a lot of gear given how busy things are at the minute,” he said.