When an owner/operator makes a change to a completely new brand of truck there has to be some very sound reasoning behind the move. For Murwillumbah’s John O’Connor, the answer was twofold, DAF Trucks and Brown and Hurley.

John O’Connor is the first Australian operator to put the latest 530 hp DAF into semi-tipper work and covers bulk grain haulage through a region that includes Inverell, Goondiwindi and the Darling Downs.

“The 530 hp DAF has improved my day tremendously,” said John. “I changed out of a Swedish truck with 520 hp and the increase in power is very noticeable. The torque production and power are superior to the extent that some hill climbs are up to 20 kph faster,” he added.

“The journey times are better because of the performance through the very hilly country. The DAF stays in high range on these grades making it a much easier drive.

“From a driver’s point of view you can feel the motor pulling and working. The DAF has much more road feel and a much more stable ride.

“The flat floor inside the cab allows me to put my fridge next to the driver’s seat. That’s important to me and so is the excellent cab insulation. There’s no heat coming up through the floor, it’s quiet and the air conditioning is excellent,” he said.

Backing the ability of the new DAF is local dealer Brown and Hurley. With branches at Kyogle and Coffs Harbour and a parts outlet at Tweed Heads, the company support was also an integral reason for John O’Connor buying the new DAF. Brown & Hurley also operate DAF dealerships in Brisbane, Rockhampton and Townsville and are renowned for their one stop shop approach for truck operators.

“You can buy the best truck in the world but without the right support from your local dealer it will be a bad decision. I’ve dealt with Brown and Hurley since I started truck driving back in 1980. The way they’ve supported me means that in return I have supported them,” said John.

The new DAF 530 hp operates at 43.5 tonnes coupled to a TEFCO alloy bodied tri-axle, 38-ft semi-tipper. A diff’ ratio of 3.73:1 provides a geared speed of 100 kph at 1,550 rpm.

Maximum power of the new 12.6 litre, turbocharged and intercooled DAF is 530 hp produced at 1900 rpm with peak torque of 2,350 Nm rated from 1100 – 1500 rpm. The engine is fully compatible with the strict Euro 3 exhaust emissions.

The specification includes Kenworth Airglide 200 suspension for the bogie drive Meritor RT46-160 axles with cross-axle and differential locks. Long travel parabolic springs are fitted to the steer axle. The transmission is a ZF 16-speed all-synchromesh unit.

DAF Trucks Australia is a division of PACCAR Australia Pty Ltd. PACCAR Inc is a worldwide manufacturer of heavy and medium-duty trucks under the Kenworth, Peterbilt, DAF and Foden nameplates.