Bedroom furniture retailer Bensons for Beds has been delivering to customers with the first of a new generation of 7.5-tonne trucks with streamlined bodies, which are 500kg lighter than those they have replaced.
The bodies, mounted on DAF LF chassis, were supplied by specialist dry freight bodybuilder Bevan Group, which shaved unnecessary weight from the 7.22m boxes without compromising strength or structural integrity.
The Bevan21 bodies are manufactured from recyclable Polyfont composite panels and feature the wind-cheating curved roof to help slash fuel bills.
Bevan has also installed the rear-mounted, pull-out platforms with safety rails used by Bensons’ two-man teams when unloading. These allow the retailer to use every inch of the body’s volume capacity, stacking beds and furniture up to the back doors.
The vehicle’s appearance is further enhanced by a new Bensons for Beds livery, designed by Doncaster-based agency Public and applied by the graphics team at Bevan’s main production facility in Halesowen, West Midlands.
Bensons for Beds has six strategically located regional distribution centres nationwide. The first four trucks have entered service in Ayr and operate over relatively long distances, which means staff regularly spend nights on the road. This explains why the DAFs are also fitted with Sky Cab sleeper pods by Hatcher Components, of Framlingham, Suffolk.
Bensons prefers to run 7.5-tonners rather than larger trucks because they operate in residential areas, and because the fact that they can be driven on standard rather than LGV licences makes it easier to recruit drivers.
Said Bensons’ director of service operations Mark Harrison: ““In addition to beds and frames we’re now delivering more bedroom furniture, which is relatively heavy. This has increased our requirement for payload as well as volume capacity, and Bevan have responded admirably.
“Despite also having pull-out loading platforms these new trucks can carry upwards of 3.0 tonnes – that’s a good half a tonne more than our previous vehicles, and a figure we’re very happy with.”