UD Trucks – the Latest News
Most of the trucks that have a strong presence in the global trucking industry today have a rich history and have braved many storms to stand firm in their current positions. Brand loyalty is often passed on from generation to generation with your grandparents’ favourite truck topping the list. Nevertheless, true loyalty is driven by reliable customer service and a good relationship with your dealer. Ultimately, a truck company is only as good as its customer support system on the ground.
The UD Truck brand originated in 1935 in Japan and was initially named after the truck’s unique two-stroke Uniflow Diesel Engine. The company’s ethos of customer satisfaction earned the truck a new definition of its UD brand name to mean, ‘Ultimate Dependability’. UD trucks have truly lived up to the name securing a position as one of the most reliable trucks in the industry today with a significant presence in more than 60 countries. UD Trucks has been a wholly owned subsidiary of the Volvo Group since 2007.
UD is one of the few truck production companies that hold worldwide competitions to recognize and award its customers with accolades on the global stage. The company hosts major competitions to identify the best mechanics and drivers in the UD community. This year, 347 teams of mechanics from all over the world took part in a series of local and national competitions that culminated in the world final of the “UD Trucks Gemba Challenge” hosted in Japan last month. Similarly, 250 drivers from different countries signed up to earn the UD ‘Ultimate Driver’ award. This title is issued to exceptional truck drivers who are identified by taking part in a set of regional competitions through which they qualify to participate in the global final of the “UD Trucks Extra Mile Challenge” held at the company’s headquarters in Ageo, Japan.
UD Trucks Extra Mile Challenge 2018
The UD Ultimate Driver challenge has a strong following because you don’t have to own a fleet of trucks or have a degree in mechanical engineering to win this award. It gives ordinary drivers a chance to earn global recognition for their skills on the job. This year, Australia was represented on the global stage by Chris Knijff, a driver from Container Swinglift Services, who won the regional contest earlier in the year.
In the competition, real-world transport cycles were simulated to evaluate the drivers’ skills in fuel-efficient driving, parking, safety and pre-inspection skills among others on the New UD Quon and Quester Trucks. Since the drivers all had different exposure and experiences with the trucks based on their regional conditions and regulations, the finalists were assigned UD Truck driver trainers to coach them in preparation for the competition.
Chris Knijff represented the Aussies well and brought home the ‘Best Sweet-Spot Driving’ award in the Quon Driving Category. The overall Ultimate Driver awards were won by Mohd Hisham from BHS Kinetic Pte Ltd in Singapore for the Quon Category and Eko Yulianto from PT Duta Lintas Nusa in Indonesia for the Quester Category.
UD Trucks goes for Level 4 Automation
Level 4 or L4 Automation is the last step towards the fully-automated transportation where a truck can be operated without a human driver in any environmental condition. UD has carried out its first demonstration of a heavy duty Quon truck with L4 automation, showcasing the company’s future, to a team of media representatives and business partners on December 12 at the company HQ in Ageo, Saitama.
The demonstration emulated real-world conditions where automation could improve the truck’s efficiency and ease the drivers work when maneuvering tight spaces such as ports, warehouses and construction sites. The new UD Quon truck was fitted with all the latest automation technologies including Radar, Lidar and GPS as well as onboard cameras and high-precision automation for reverse driving, slaloming and stopping.
UD Trucks Aftermarket Support
The UD trucks’ Ultimate Dependability concept cannot be achieved without a comprehensive support system and back office ensuring customers have access to genuine truck parts and services. Moreover, UD Telematics Services offer clients the freedom and flexibility to monitor, track and manage their fleets remotely. This high-tech wireless communications system helps to improve profitability by reducing downtime and operational costs.
As part of the customer support package, UD offers financial services and products to its clients including leases, rentals and instalment sales as well as full maintenance agreements designed to give the clients value for money over the lifespan of the vehicle.
The UD Trucks Company has a strong focus on customer satisfaction that resonates across the numerous company locations worldwide. Among the most effective tools for communicating the company’s ethos and standards are the annual UD global challenge competitions. These events have been applauded for bringing the international UD community together as one family.