Trucks that make compelling cases for ease of operation and low maintenance in urban delivery applications are half way themselves to delivering the goods for logistics and transport companies like Direct Freight Express, for which that very role is often the sole, unwavering focus.
Having celebrated 25 years in business last year, Direct Freight Express has been riding an arc of growth since it first opened its doors for business out of a hangar in Mascot, NSW, back in 1993. With that growth curve has come expansion. The company runs 48 depots nationwide having added another five in the last 18 months.
As it specialises as an express carrier with over 1000 units of commercial vehicles and trailing equipment in operation, Direct Freight Express is an early adopter of the latest technology with single, B-double and B-triples dispatched across the country multiple times a day. The company is also committed to Performance-Based Standards, more recently debuting a new 42-metre-long B-triple approved for Level 3 access developed specifically for the transit lane between Perth and Adelaide, where nominal vehicle length on the route is 36 metres.
For single trailer application in densely populated metro areas Direct Freight Express has recently taken delivery of ten new IVECO Stralis 4x2s, bringing its total of these units in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne to 15.
National Operations Manager Jason Elliott, who has been with the company since 1998, says cost savings and fuel usage are paramount considerations for finding commercial vehicles suitable for mid distance deliveries of palletised product.
“It goes without saying emissions controls and fuel savings are a high priority for any segment of a working business like ours,” he says. “The IVECOs are already set up with the EBS and airbags and air suspension seats. As an around town truck, for the money asked, I think they make your dollar go further.”
Running costs on a national operation like Jason’s means he is always mindful of striking a balance between outlay, innovation and upkeep, without sacrificing quality. Not unlike its customers, Direct Freight Express is both driven by service and price. This is reflected in its investments in new equipment.
“When you have a lot of trucks in your fleet you’ve got to try and find what keeps your pricing right and that gives you all the features that you’re after,” he says. “From a local prime mover point of view I think the IVECO embodies what is now essential on a modern prime mover.”