South Gloucestershire Council has taken delivery of seven new Volvo FMX 330 6×4 and
two FMX 330 4×4 rigids, each mounted with a snow plough and gritting body.
Supplied by Stuart Pearce, EV & Fleet Solutions Manager at Truck and Bus Wales and West,
the nine new FMXs join a 45-strong HGV fleet, 15 of which are currently supplied by Volvo
Trucks. The deal builds on a 10-year relationship the Council has enjoyed with the Swedish
Ron Dovey, Fleet Operations Manager at South Gloucestershire Council, says: “Reliability
and prompt back-up from the local dealer are essential for us, as we need to feel assured
that our operations are relatively unaffected during any necessary maintenance and
downtime, particularly in the colder months.”
Purchased outright, each FMX is powered by a 10.8 litre Euro-6 diesel engine, producing up
to 330 hp and 1600 Nm of torque. The larger 6x4s are built on a 4300mm wheelbase, while
the two all-wheel drive 4x4s are built on a shorter 3900mm wheelbase – ideal for working
on icy surfaces and steep hills, often between rows of parked cars, on the local roads.
All the trucks are fitted with Econ Engineering salt spreading bodywork and a snow plough,
and are driven through Volvo’s Powertronic six-speed fully-automatic planetary gearbox with
integral retarder. Designed for heavy duty applications, this provides smooth gearchanges
without interruption in power delivery in both automatic and manual modes. The electronic
gear selection and torque amplifier also offer smooth start-ups and good traction, even on
gradients and demanding terrain.
The Day cabs have been specified with an Information package, designed for easy and safe
operation. This is centred around a dashboard featuring a fully digital 12-inch high-resolution
instrument display, allowing drivers to choose between four different screen views.
A nine-inch side display provides infotainment, navigation assistance, transport information
and camera monitoring, letting drivers have complete control of the information they want
On-board safety features include Forward Collision Warning with emergency braking and
Lane Keeping Support, which uses a camera positioned in the upper centre of the
windscreen to alert the driver with a signal from the speakers during unintentional lane
departure. The trucks also benefit from Volvo’s Drive package, including fully electric air
conditioning and twin driver armrests, to enhance comfort.
The seven FMX 26-tonne 6×4 rigids and the two smaller 18-tonners have also been equipped
with a passenger corner camera, which detects nearby pedestrians and cyclists. This camera
can be activated manually or by the turning indicator and projects a clear view on the driver’s
South Gloucestershire Council will use the trucks to spread salt and grit on routes in the local
area, keeping access roads, delivery ramps and shoppers’ car parks clear in areas of urban
Bristol, such as the Cribbs Causeway and Kingswood Malls, as well as rural main roads, such
as the A46 and A38. The fleet is on-call 24/7 throughout the winter months, with the new
trucks likely to be kept in operation for ten years.