Twenty Wrightbus hydrogen double-decker buses have been ordered by Birmingham City Council as part of its Clean Air Hydrogen Bus Pilot. The buses will be added to the National Express West Midlands fleet and will operate from April 2021. The city already has 29 battery-electric double-decker buses in circulation and this order represents the council’s latest move to drive down emissions.
John Sutch Cranes has confirmed it will specify Michelin tyres across its fleet of mobile cranes, tractor units, trailers and rigid trucks, after a trial set of Michelins covered more than twice the distance normally seen from the firm’s previous tyre of choice. The family business compared the performance of the 445/95 R25 Michelin X-Crane + tyres fitted to one of its three-axle Liebherr cranes, versus an identical crane doing similar work, but running on the same size tyres from another premium brand.
Staffordshire-based N.S. Clarke Transport has specified Michelin tyres as original equipment across 30 new Volvo FH 6×2 500hp tractors joining its fleet, praising the tyre company for its impressive pence per kilometre running costs and its innovative accidental damage guarantee.
Scandinavian start-up full-electric vehicle manufacturer Volta Trucks has signed a new tyre partnership with Bridgestone. The world’s largest tyre manufacturer will fit its tyres to the first launch vehicle, which will be revealed at an online event on Thursday 3 September. The agreement also covers the supply of tyres to Volta’s pilot vehicles, due to start evaluation with fleet operators in early 2021. Large logistics fleet operators have already signed-up to trial the Volta Zero, including DPD Group in the UK and Bring and Posten in Scandinavia, with orders also already being taken for the vehicle in both markets.
In the coming months, Tructyre ATS will replace its regional call and administration centres in Eastleigh, Widnes, Aston and Avonmouth with a central Customer Experience Centre in Gateshead. This evolution in the company’s operating model follows the creation of a new Gateshead-based customer service team earlier this year.
Michelin is rolling out a new digital services platform for customers in the USA. The tyre maker is offering the cloud-based Maestro platform through its 2018-established Services and Solutions division with the aim of creating “a stronger, more effective working relationship between service providers, fleets and Michelin.”
Bridgestone has collaborated with Microsoft in the development of a new monitoring system for the real-time detection of tyre damage. The UK’s Department for Transport 2018 statistics show tyre issues contribute to 30 per cent of all car accidents caused by technical failure. Bridgestone says its Tyre Damage Monitoring System is the “final piece in tracking tyre issues.” The system offers similar applications to recent market solutions that process live data using algorithms to predict the effects of tyre damage and notify drivers, fleet operators and service providers. What separates it from existing systems is that no additional hardware need be installed, the manufacturer adds.
Michelin has signed a new tyre supply agreement with one of Europe’s largest asset finance, leasing and rental specialists. The tyre manufacturer’s Services & Solutions division will supply all tyres to BNP Paribas Rental Solutions’ UK fleet. It will also fully manage the nationwide fleet of specialist mission-critical vehicles. Its vehicles have individual policies tailored to meet the needs of BNP Paribas Rental Solutions’ customers.
FreshLinc Group has moved its entire bulk transport fleet onto its existing Effitires tyre management contract. The company’s fleet now runs exclusively on Michelin tyres as a result. FreshLinc has grown into one of the UK’s biggest logistics firms, having been established in 2996. It operates four separate divisions – FreshLinc Chilled, FLX Logistics, DirectLinc and FLB – with a combined fleet of approximately 400 commercial vehicles. The company has fitted Michelin tyre for more than a decade.
Goodyear has landed a major fleet deal in North America, having been named Ryder System Inc.’s preferred supplier of new and retreaded tyres as well as tyre management solutions across the United States and Canada. This partnership will officially commence on 1 January 2021.
In March, the rapid spread of COVID-19 began to drastically impact almost all industries across Europe. Some had to accelerate production to address a sudden spike in demand while others cut back production in response to declining demand and as a means of limiting the further spread of the virus.
Independent parcel carrier Yodel is rolling out a new generation of tyres designed to maximise the safety and mobility of its delivery vans in all weathers, including on dry, wet, icy and snow-covered roads. The Michelin Agilis CrossClimate tyres will initially be fitted across Yodel’s fleet of 550 Mercedes-Benz Sprinters, directly supporting the firm’s ability to deliver on-time to every UK postcode. Their introduction forms part of a new three-year fully-managed Effitires contract with Michelin, which also covers Yodel’s 1,326 rigid trucks, tractor units and trailers – which will all continue to run on premium Michelin tyres.
Michelin has issued special guidance for haulage companies and own-account operators parking fleets for extended periods during the COVID-19 pandemic. This follows a survey by the Road Haulage Association which revealed 46 per cent of the UK’s trucks – around 240,000 vehicles – are now parked up with no work.
Newton Abbot-based heating oil and fuel specialist Heltor has returned to a full Michelin tyre policy across its fleet of more than 50 commercial vehicles. Michelin states that the move comes less than two years after switching to a competing premium tyre brand. Following the move, Heltor closely monitored the performance of the new tyres against existing Michelin fitments within the fleet and was able to track the precise tyre cost per kilometre between the two brands.
Michelin is teaming up with AS 24, the HGV service station network that fuel company Total runs in 28 countries across Europe, to launch a new automatic tyre inspection service – Fleet Diag 24. The partners will launch their diagnostic offer in March. The rollout begins in a small way, with Fleet Diag 24 initially offered at just three sites in France, however, we can expect to see it introduced at many more of the 986 AS 24 outlets in the UK and Europe.