Coach House Antiques, the UK’s largest trade-only supplier of furniture and giftware, has added two new DAF XF 480 FT 4x2 tractor units – with Super Space Cabs – as vehicle replacements within its own-account fleet. The 28-unit fleet, which is 100% DAF, features four-axle tractor unit and trailer combinations operating at a maximum 25-tonnes GCW.
Vehicles were supplied by local DAF Dealer, Lancashire DAF, at Walton Summit in Preston.
The relatively high power-to-weight ratio provides two significant operational benefits for Coach House; excellent fuel economy resulting from what the company describes as a ‘relaxed engine characteristic’ which, in turn, allows the operation to employ an eight-year vehicle replacement programme.
“We run light,” says Allen Jones, Transport and Distribution Manager at Coach House Antiques, “and we find the relatively large engine size delivers excellent economy despite being tasked with demanding multi-drop duties. We regularly see returns in excess of 10mpg. This relaxed engine characteristic,” he says, “means we can extend the truck’s whole-life prospects – we replace them every eight years with approximately 750,000 kms on the clock.”
Vehicles are fully utilised on a high intensity operation with drivers, who are often out all week, benefitting from the high level of comfort afforded by DAF’s Super Space Cab specification. Jones goes on to describe how the big-cabbed, high-powered DAFs also ensure a high rate of driver retention, with some individuals having enjoyed employment at the company for over 20 years, “We really do have some first-rate drivers,” he points out, “thanks in no small part to the trucks we supply them. The big DAF engines really take the stress and strain out of the job, and nights away are more than manageable in the Super Space Cabs. A happy driver is a productive driver,” he adds.
Coach House, based in Accrington, has in place its own service and maintenance programme carried out at its on-site Vehicle Maintenance Unit. “We have a dedicated team of professionals to run and support our fleet,” added Jones, “including workshop technicians who are all fully conversant with the DAF product. “We enjoy an excellent relationship with our supplying truck dealer, Lancashire DAF in Preston, and we’re delighted with the overall DAF partnership.”