My Best Truck of 2014

IMG_0915.JPG
For me this is the best truck I have seen in 2014. It might not be the newest, it might not be most practical for most of Europe and it certainly won’t be everyones taste but for me, spot on.

IMG_0910.JPG

IMG_0911.JPG
If you live in the UK and haven’t been to one I strongly advise that you make 2015 your first trip to a European truck show, the standard of trucks is amazing. I can’t deny that the trucks here in the UK are getting better and better but the Europeans just seem to have it right, they all look good. To me the best trucks have always been out of reach of what I could afford or achieve and the T560 is no different. We all joke about winning the lottery but a Tcab would be very close to the top of my list. It’s blue, it’s got two sets of pipes, it’s got a subtle custom interior and enough lights to make it look good but not over the top. As with anything I would make a few subtle changes as I’d want to put my mark on it.

IMG_0914.JPG

IMG_0912.JPG
2014 has seen a big rise in the blogs popularity through all mediums, the Facebook page, twitter and the good old fashioned http://www.truckblog.co.uk website. I’m not going to link to any of those this time round as I’m sure you all could do with a break from the ruthless links and plugs for the blog. I have no idea where the blog will be in another 12 months, hopefully you’ll all still send me stuff, photos, info and the odd piece of trucking memorabilia to decorate TBHQ and I’ll keep bugging the TV companies in the vague hope they’ll see that we need Truckblog TV!

Hopefully I’ll be visiting, Truckfest Peterborough, Crowfield Truck Rally, Gathering of the Griffin, Retro Truck Show at Gaydon, more than likely (and hopefully) Truckstar Festival at Assen as my foreign trip, although I have heard on the grapevine that there is quite a convoy of English motors heading to the International Trucker & Country Show held at Interlaken, CH. I have always wanted to go James?? Finally if the offer is still there then I might just make it to Belfast too.

Anyway thank you for following and thank you for making the blog what it is, without your contributions I’m sure you’d all be bored silly of 143’s, MAN TGL LX’s and Mercedes-Benz photos! As we all do secretly say now and again Keep on Trucking!

IMG_0913.JPG

Advertisements

Scania’s Man Test

Scania R730 & Scania 141

For those of you who missed it, last weeks Commercial Motor magazine inadvertently contained the ultimate man test (and a few half decent photos!). A while back CM magazine did a Volvo comparison of a brand new FH750 and an F16 470. I read with interest but it didn’t stir me as much as last weeks. A brand new Scania R730 V8 compared to a 141 V8 and how far truck technology has come. It’s fair to say that all makes of truck have changed beyond belief and I myself can relate to this test as I have driven brand new R620’s and I also owned a 141. Which of the 2 would I choose?? Honestly?? In my opinion I think it depends on what type of man you are;

– Are you the type who likes all the luxuries of life?
– Do you prefer the straight easy rather than working her up through some bends?
– Would you rather put a few pounds on rather than work up a sweat?
– Would rather just open the back doors or get a full workout stripping your trailer?
– Do you prefer a key to a push button?

If the answer to these questions is yes, your a 730 driver, If you answered all these with no then you are a 141 driver.

Scania R730 & Scania 141

Having read through the Commercial Motor article, author Brian Weatherley says he’d prefer the 730, but I wonder how many of you agree. You can’t disagree the ride of a modern truck like the 730 is as good as if not better than any expensive luxury car, but I love driving for the “Driving” element. Changing gear, getting the revs just right, holding her back using the gears, feeling like i’m actually controlling the mechanical beast under my feet. As I said I have driven both but although the newer is far superior in the comfort department, for the love of driving you just can’t beat, the 10 speed gearbox connected to the V8. The noise of the earlier V8 burbling away, makes you head for every tunnel possible and I never never tire of it burbling away. The problem with newer more comfortable truck is that, in my opinion it makes life to easy. Now I probably wouldn’t be saying this after 40’c heat and clothes full of sand having just rebuilt my tilt trailer in Doha, but even so, give me the 141 any day. After All as my all time hero Dave Poulton once said; “Have a wash, clean the truck out and you feel as happy as a sand boy again!”

Scania R730 & Scania 141

The other reason for me doing this blog, is to re-share the absolutely amazing photographs in this Commercial Motor article. We all strive to take good photos of our trucks on the move, but these seem to be in another league. Would Mr Mark Bourdillon stand up and take a bow! Just look at these pics, taken on a track, yes I know, but even so with the spray coming off both trucks, they just look brilliant! So amazed I was, that I emailed Mr Bourdillon to ask his permission to use his photos on the blog. Luckily for all of us and especially those who didn’t see last weeks CM, Mark said he would happily let me put them on here. Thanks Mark.

Scania R730 & Scania 141

A few things left to say;
(1) Please Please don’t use the photographic genius Mark Bourdillons photos.
(2) I really would be happy driving a 141 every day (I’d be equally as happy in the 730!)
(3) I think all these principles apply to you Volvo lovers too. F88? F89? F16? FH750??
(4) Dear Scania in the next Special Edition, Please Please bring back the “Starter Button”.
(5) Yes I had to watch all of Part 2 of Destination Doha to get my quote right……What a shame!
(6) Did they do a little speed test of the 141 round the Millbrook test track?? Mine did 73 down the A14 (unit only).
(7) Sorry this blog should have come with a “Romance” warning.

Finally, thanks again to Mark Bourdillon for letting me use his photos. Also thanks to Commercial Motor.

ETS are from Tottenham not Dagenham!!

Thanks to my old mate Andy Blagg, who has a loft in his stately home dedicated to storing the complete back catalogue of Truck & Driver magazine!! I got a message saying after trawling through his piles for a few hours, he stumbled across the October 2000 edition containing said article, full marks Blaggy!!
Having read through the article, i found out that ETS were based in Tottenham not Dagenham as i said, but they did have them serviced at the MAN dealer on the A13 at Dagenham. I was right on the truck ending up in Switzerland though! Any way i have scanned it for you all to read with your Sunday afternoon cuppa!!
Any more ETS info, please email me; ben@truckblog.co.uk

ETS - Truck & Driver - October 2000
ETS - Truck & Driver - October 2000
ETS - Truck & Driver - October 2000
ETS - Truck & Driver - October 2000