Supplied by dealer Lancashire DAF, the EU-spec trucks have left-hand-drive cabs and 950mm fifth-wheel height, along with Super Space Cabs and Paccar MX-13 480bhp engines.
The operator usually runs higher power engines but, says managing director Kevin Hopper, the dealer convinced him “that the 480 will give us all the power we need and much improved fuel economy”.
He adds: “The first truck in service is certainly living up to that expectation. I have driven the New XF for myself, and I am very pleased with the new TraXon gearbox as well. It is as good as anything on the market – a very seamless shift.
“Even fully loaded, with the new engine, new long-range diff and this new box, the truck was running at least 200rpm lower than our current trucks.”
Aftersales support was crucial to the deal, too, he says. “Anything mechanical can suffer an unexpected breakdown, but it’s what happens when that occurs that’s important to me... DAFaid has shown itself in the past to be an outstanding 24/7 operation, with good parts availability across the UK and, more importantly for us, its European network, and a willingness to keep any disruption of our services to a minimum.
“That, just as much as the quality of the New XF, has won them this order and our strong interest in the XF going forward.”