Battery company recharges fleet

Alco Batteries, a family-owned company, has expanded from a single store to one of Australia’s leading battery suppliers with more than 20 branches. At the heart of this expansion has been the development of a specialised distribution fleet of vehicles.

Alco Battery Sales started in Sydney in 1985 and has since grown to become a major battery supplier and the sole importer of premium automotive and industrial batteries, including Atlas BX, Trojan, Rolls Surrette, First National, Ritar and Discover Energy. The industries it services include automotive, truck, bus and tractor, electric vehicle, mining, marine, and caravan and RV.

The 18-strong Alco Batteries truck fleet comprises a mix of new and older model Hinos, including two 300 Series 816 and two 716 Auto light duty models, and 14 medium duty 500 Series models.

The Alco Batteries truck fleet supports the sale of premium battery brands by servicing its distribution warehouses (in Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Auckland), its large dealer network across Australia and New Zealand, plus 15 company-owned retail stores located in cities and regional areas around the country.

Twelve trucks in the fleet are equipped with custom-built battery transport bodies and three have flatbed trays. The battery-bodied trucks are loaded daily to service all regional and rural locations, travelling long hours each day to deliver automotive and valve-regulated lead-acid batteries from the warehouse. The flatbed Hinos are used for warehouse distribution and to deliver large quantities of batteries via pallets to city-based branches and distributors.

Alco says the Hino’s 500 Series range makes up the bulk of Alco’s fleet because of their ability to cover a broad spectrum of GVM requirements, from the 10,400kg FC 1022 through to the 26,000kg GVM of the FM 2632.

The company's new trucks are fitted with driver safety and comfort features such as cruise control, ABS brakes, driver’s SRS airbag, FUPS (Front Under-run Protection System), electric and heated external rear view mirrors, and an ISRI 6800 driver’s seat with integrated safety belt as standard.

“Alco Batteries’ truck fleet needs to be on the road for up to six days a week and the business cannot afford any downtime. Therefore, reliability of the trucks is the most important thing to us,” said Mark Ray, Alco Group Sales and Marketing Director. “The drivers also need a comfortable place to do their work, and Alco’s fleet needs to be capable of handling very heavy loads.”

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