Trailer Magazine

Building closer connections

  • From the November 2019 issue.
Building closer connections

For the last two years Knorr-Bremse has been busy expanding TruckServices – its nationwide network of authorised service centres – to meet the rapidly increasing demand for trailer electronic braking system (TEBS) servicing. Hallam Truck Centre, Melbourne’s South Eastern Kenworth and DAF Truck Dealership is pleased to have come onboard.

With ADR 38/05 ruling the mandatory fitment of TEBS to all new heavy trailers manufactured from 1 November this year, Knorr-Bremse has been gearing up to meet the surge in demand for servicing and repairs of these highly sophisticated braking systems. 

With Kenworth being the heavy-duty truck market leader in Australia, it’s fitting that Kenworth dealers Brown & Hurley and CMV Group’s Hallam Truck Centre, Bayswater Truck Centre, CMV Truck Centre in Adelaide and Barry Maney Group in Mt Gambier, among others, have been appointed as TruckServices dealers. Further Kenworth dealers across the country are also expected to be selected in due course and according to Knorr-Bremse, the goal is to have an Australia-wide TruckServices network encompassing 50 or more outlets by the end of 2019.

Speaking about the proliferation of TruckServices and the push to have strategically positioned branches located across the country, Knorr-Bremse Trailer Sales Business Manager, Gareth Lawless, says it’s all about meeting the demand for technical service and support for a steadily growing number of TEBS-equipped trailers. 

“Over the last 10 years in particular the number of TEBS-equipped trailers has increased dramatically, specifically due to the high uptake by many of the major fleet operators,” Gareth explains. “Prior to 2012, Knorr-Bremse trailer products in Australia were looked after by a distributor, but in that year we took it back into the fold and we started investing in creating a comprehensive service infrastructure around Australia.

“TruckServices is a European brand that represents all things aftermarket in the Knorr-Bremse world and its primary focus here in Australia is TEBS servicing.”

According to Gareth, the first Australian TruckServices service partner was signed on around two years ago, and since then the number has increased to around 50, as at the end of 2019.

“The network includes a broad range of businesses including completely independent ‘mum and dad’ and mobile ‘man-in-a-van’ type operations right through to flagship affiliated original equipment manufacturer (OEM) dealerships like Hallam Truck Centre,” Gareth says.

“Initially it has been less about the Eastern states capital cities and more about the main transport hubs which tend to be the secondary or regional cities like Albury-Wodonga, Mildura, Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Kalgoorlie, Perth and Port Hedland.

“In recent times we have focussed on strategic partnerships with companies where we share synergies such as PACCAR with the Bendix platform on the prime movers and obviously the Knorr-Bremse product on the trailers. This provides a one-stop-shop for their clients which I think is a key reason why Brown & Hurley and Hallam Truck Centre have come onboard.”

Gareth goes on to describe the enormity of supplying sufficient and strategically placed service outlets to cater for the growing TEBS-equipped trailer park.

“In any given year there is upwards of 10,000 trailers built in this country and from 1 November the vast majority of these will be TEBS-equipped. Therefore, an expanded network of service centres with relevant diagnostic equipment and suitably skilled technicians is paramount.”

It is for this very reason that Hallam Truck Centre decided to partner with Knorr-Bremse and become a TruckServices centre.

Hallam Truck Centre General Manager, Daniel Crawford, says it is an exciting new development for the company which this year celebrated a significant double milestone.

“We’re part of the CMV Group which is celebrating 85 years in business,” Daniel says. “and we’ve also been selling Kenworths for 50 years through our sister dealer in Adelaide, CMV Truck Centre.”

Daniel goes on to say that he considers the TruckServices aspect of the business as a natural progression given the fact that Knorr-Bremse already supplies the Bendix braking components used in Kenworth production on the PACCAR line.

“It allows us to support the truck and trailer as a whole, which provides a significant benefit to our customers,” he says. “Due to the legislative changes TEBS is becoming far more common on trailers and the systems are way more sophisticated than the standard pneumatic systems.

“So there’s a lot more training needed in fault diagnostics and to enable the optimisation of the braking systems for the entire combination. We believe taking this step will provide a greater end-to-end solution for our customers.” 

Adding a further dimension to reinforce the safety message, Daniel says the company’s PacLease truck rental and leasing arm is now having all its new Kenworths fitted with the full suite of Knorr-Bremse Bendix safety systems.

“This highlights our position from a safety perspective in that we understand the value of putting safer trucks on the road, whether that be through sales or rental/leasing opportunities.

“This is a fantastic industry that we’ve been in for 85 years and safety is a key pillar of our business,” he adds. “Incorporating TruckServices into our business will give us the ability to cater for the complete needs of our customers in terms of keeping their entire combinations operating at peak efficiency and safety levels.”   

Fast Fact
In anticipation of the proliferation of TEBS, specifically due to the mandate of ADR 38/05 on all new trailers built after 1 November this year, Knorr-Bremse has appointed around 50 TruckServices operations in strategic locations around Australia.

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