WINNING RECIPE: HINO FUEL ECONOMY AND TOP-CLASS DEALER SERVICE
The proven fuel economy of Hino trucks linked to top class after sales service is proving a winning recipe for Hino Midrand. “This combination enables us to not only retain existing customers, but also to gain new business,” says Hennie de Villiers, the Dealer Principal at Hino Midrand and the person responsible for overseeing all six Hino dealerships in the Bidvest McCarthy Group.
This combination has enabled Hino Midrand to build up an impressive list of fleetowners over the years including big operators such as Shoprite and Bidvest Food Services.
The Shoprite involvement goes back more than 12 years – even before Shoprite moved to its current Midrand distribution site. Over the past three years Shoprite has bought more than 130 Hino trucks of various sizes from the new Hino Midrand facility near the New Road off-ramp on the N1 highway. A further order was placed recently for another 38 of the 700-Series truck tractors.
The Shoprite fleet carries maximum loads of 24 tons, but on average the cargo is in the 15-18 ton range, carried on two- or three-axle semi-trailers. It is a very big fleet by any standards, with 400 trucks operating out of the Midrand depot alone. Each truck travels between 20 000 – 30 000km a month with 30 000km service intervals. The total Shoprite fleet travels about 72 million kilometres a year delivering stock to its large number of stores countrywide.
Shoprite is now buying more of the larger and more powerful 700-Series models which are proving 3-4km/l more economical than the opposition in this mixed operation. Most of the Hino trucks in the Shoprite fleet have AMT (Automated Manual Transmission) gearboxes.
Shoprite’s back-up support from Hino Midrand includes on-site service centres at the Midrand and Durban depots, where the dealer provides the staff, a parts store and the necessary infrastructure.
Bidvest Food Services operates a national fleet of more than 200 trucks, most of them Hinos. They have bought more than 85 trucks from Hino Midrand over the past three years, mainly 915 series, but also a number of 1626 freight carriers.
The Bidvest Food Services fleet has a very tough operating schedule, often including 20-30 stops a day while the trucks also travel far and wide with drivers operating on a single shift 5 days a week basis. The 915 series Hino 300 trucks are generally replaced when they reach 350 000km and the 1626 series Hino 500 trucks at 750 000 km.
Uptime is vital for the Bidvest Food Services fleet and the company is insistent on a rigorous preventative maintenance programme. All scheduled services in Gauteng take place at Hino Midrand, although there is technical support at the Linbro depot too. This includes a start-up service and check from 05h00 daily.
“We are very aware that with the high costs related to operating trucking fleets in the current economic environment top class after-sales back is vital, as is keeping down the cost per kilometre,” explained De Villiers.
“For this reason we now offer pre-booked servicing on weekdays until 20h00 and on Saturdays from 08h00 – 13h00. We have mobile service units, based on Toyota Quantum panelvans, based at our dealerships to provide on-site servicing when required. We also carry a substantial stock of parts besides having the convenience of daily replenishment from the Hino parts warehouse in Benoni.
“The team at Hino Midrand is very aware that providing top quality service at reasonable cost is key to our future growth and to this end we are very proud that our efforts have resulted in our dealership being the reigning Hino Dealer of the Year. Now we are going all out to retain this coveted title for 2016,” concluded the genial dealer principal of Hino Midrand.