DAF presents new model at ITTES

The ITTES in Melbourne saw the arrival of a long-awaited model at the top end of the DAF range, with the unveiling of the DAF XF105 top-of-the-range prime mover. This model has been available for quite some time on the European market and has been part of the DAF success story, which has seen the Paccar-owned Dutch truck manufacturer sitting at number one in the European truck sales figures.

Based on the same driveline as the very successful DAF CF85 model which has been on sale here in Australia for quite some time, the new XF105 offers operators and drivers a larger, well-designed cabin for those who are travelling long distances and require a few more creature comforts.

The design features the well thought out compromise, used by Paccar here in Australia, combining the sophistication of the latest European design with tried and trusted componentry which has seen sterling service here in Australia. For the true Aussie stalwarts there is even the option to include the Eaton Roadranger 18 speed transmission in the driveline to make them feel at home.

Power comes from the Paccar MX engine which is now sold by the company globally. After its initial successful launch in Europe in DAF Trucks, it is now being sold in its North American guise in large numbers fitted to Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks on the US market. The in-line six 12.9 L engine will be available up to 510 hp, making it suitable for single trailer work plus some B-double applications.

The top power of 510 hp (375 kW) is available from 1500 to 1900 rpm while the maximum torque on hand is 2500 Nm (1850 ft lb), this is achieved between 1000 and 1410 rpm. To achieve compliance with ADR 80/03 the engine uses SCR only to achieve the standard. The design uses a single intercooled turbo and electronically controlled fuel injection and can achieve exhaust emission control compliance without resorting to after treatment in the exhaust stream.

The transmission fitted as standard is the tried and trusted AS Tronic 16 speed automated manual transmission which has achieved great results for DAF and a number of other European truck manufacturers. With this gearbox choice there is also the optional ZF Intarder available, which can produce up to 563 hp (420 kW) of retardation for the driveline. This is an add-on to the retardation available from the MX engine brake which, on it's own, can produce 429 hp (320 kW) at 2100 rpm. As previously mentioned, there is also the option of an Eaton Roadranger 18 speed manual gearbox. The rear axles come from Meritor and the rear suspension is the Kenworth KW AG 400, well known here in Australia.

However it is the cabin, especially the Super Space Cab at the top end of the range, which differentiates this model from its smaller cousin the CF. Space is the operative word with plenty of headroom for the driver standing in the middle of the cab. From the driver's seat it is a small step up onto the central engine cover and even in the midroof Space Cab there is room for many drivers to stand upright.

Sitting in the driver's seat, the driver is surrounded by the wraparound dash which is both simple to use and clearly displays all of the information needed. Gearbox control is simply a dial close to the left-hand and mounted on the dashboard. Information and control systems are a match for any European truck manufacturer and the simplicity of their design can be said to be one explanation for this model's success in the European truck market.

There has been a great deal of speculation and expectation built around the introduction of the XF105 here in Australia and its arrival in Melbourne in 2012 gives the Paccar organisation another string to its bow. With its European style and comfort levels coupled with a proven driveline and pragmatic specification, the DAF XF105 should prove to be a useful addition to the Paccar offering here in Australia.

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