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Scania's New Truck Generation offers greater economies of scale for commercial fleet operators, and we got an opportunity to test drive them.

18 Oct 2019

Earning a Class 4 and 5 licence to drive a truck was in my bucket list when I was younger. The goal was to earn every driving licence available. Since I liked driving, it seemed like a good idea.

But alas, after years of holding a Class 3 licence, I never went through with getting even a Class 4 licence.

Scania's New Truck Generation was launched late last year in Singapore, and we got an oppurtunity to test drive it in Malaysia
And aside from trucking simulator games like Euro Truck Simulator and 18 Wheels of Steel, I've never had actual experience reviewing a truck, or even driving one in general.

So when Scania offered us an opportunity to check out its New Truck Generation, a test drive in a controlled environment was part of the itinerary.

While the experience I gained driving a Scania is something I'll remember for life, the experience for its customers is something on a much bigger scale.

Easier than it looks

It seemed like a daunting task at hand. It isn't just driving the big and new Scania G-Series Cab. I was tasked to haul two different trailers - a 40-foot container and a 20-foot tipper.

You'll find the interior of Scanias to be one that's familiar and comfortable when compared to passenger cars
Piloting something of such scale is a task in itself, and I assumed we had to deal with a confusing million-speed manual transmission too.

While it seemed difficult, the Scania G-Series is as easy to drive as a normal passenger car, and you'll find all the switchgear in places you're used to in a car's cabin.

Plus, Scania now offers a new heavy-duty 10-speed automatic transmission across all models.

To prove how easy it is to pilot, Marie Sjodin Enstrom, Managing Director of Scania South East Asia, took us for a spin at the grounds of Malaysia Agro Exposition Park.

Now, behind the wheel

Marie brought us for a spin around the circuit before we had a go at it ourselves
So with my concerns of driving the big Scania G-Series answered by our safety instructor and Marie's smooth driving, it is time for me to get behind the wheel.

I repeated all that I saw Marie do in regards to safety. Close the door, put on the seatbelt, hold on the brake, and finally start the engine. As I put the truck into drive and checked the mirrors, I forgot one thing she did. "Honk before you move off," said my eagle eyed instructor.

With that as a good reminder that I am not at all an expert in moving a Class 5 vehicle, we headed through the circuit. 1.8km in length, it is filled with crests, dips and tight 90-degree turns. Perfect to test the truck's abilities, and a challenge for this novice truck driver.

Easy does it

Driving through the circuit was as seamless as driving a passenger vehicle. But I was pretty careful, taking into consideration of the length of the truck.

Although driving a big truck took a little getting used to, Scanias are as easy to drive as a passenger car
As we turned into an open stretch, my instructor told me to go for it. The G-Series Cab that I drove comes with a massive 13-litre straight-six turbodiesel. It's good for 430bhp and a whopping 2,150Nm of torque. This Scania can certainly haul!

So by my second outing with another Scania G-Series - now with a 20-foot tipper hooked at the back - I was pretty confident at my truck driving skills. Alas, my days piloting trucks in simulator games have paid off, I thought.

Soon enough, my instructor called on me to check my mirrors. I was far too close to the kerb, and going anymore forwards would mean the tipper's wheels would be mounting the kerb considerably.

With some small adjustments, I avoided that situation. Perhaps I still need some actual truck driving training if I do want to impress my instructor.

The total solution for trucking

Daniel Tan, Sales Director of Scania SEA, talked us through the various customisation options available for Scania's customers
Scania doesn't just offer a truck that's comfortable and easy to drive, as what we experienced. The merits of such qualities certainly makes a lot of sense for truck drivers who spend countless hours on the road. On top of a good truck, Scania also offers a level of support that's tailored specifically to each and every customer's requirements.

Through its flexible servicing plans and fleet management systems, Scania ensures that its vehicles are kept on the road longer, which translates to improved profits for its customers.

It isn't a one-size-fits-all situation with trucks, either. As Scania trucks are modular in nature, it can be customised to suit different requirements, along with offering better ergonomics and comfort features for truck drivers.

Scania's support for its customers is undoubtedly the best in the business, from its deep understanding of trucks and the transportation business. And these benefits automatically come from choosing Scania as a fleet solution.

While it offers increased economies of scale for business owners, I've come to a conclusion myself. If I finally complete my Class 5 licence and want to drive trucks for a living, a Scania is a truck I want to spend my time in.

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