Ballarat-based Clifford Brick and Tile has added four new Freightliner Cascadias to its fleet after a great run with the new model.
The family business, which has been operating since 1976, initially purchased two Cascadia units along with a trio of Mercedes-Benz Actros models last year.
The first Cascadias soon made an impression on brothers Peter, Neil and John Clifford, largely thanks to their excellent fuel economy.
“Our trucks are running with a load of bricks, all over suburban Melbourne, often in heavy traffic, with a forklift sitting on the back which is not great for economy, but the Cascadia is proving to be very economical,” Peter Clifford said.
“That’s part of the reason we were keen to order four more,” he added.
Another reason is the quality of the Cascadia’s cabin.
“The build quality is a real stand-out with the new Cascadia,” Mr Clifford said. “The fit and finish is great and the doors shut like a car.”
Mr Clifford said he was very interested in the Cascadia early on and expected it to perform strongly given the Daimler technology under the bonnet.
“We bought the new generation Mercedes-Benz Actros when it came out in 2016 and it has just been a brilliant truck and was easily the most economical truck in the fleet,” Mr Clifford explains.
“Given the powertrain is effectively the same in the Cascadia we knew that it was going to be a good thing and that has turned out to be absolutely correct.”
The Clifford Cascadias are 116 models with a 36-inch sleeper and a 13-litre Detroit six-cylinder putting out 505hp and 1850lb-ft of torque that meet the Euro 6-equivalent US emissions (GHG17) rating.
They have been selected with a mix of DT12 fully automated transmissions and Eaton 18-speed manuals.
Another key attribute that attracted the Clifford Brick and Tile team to Cascadia was the full suite of safety features that are standard, including radar-based emergency braking and adaptive cruise control as well as lane-departure warning, intelligent high beam and automatic wipers.
The excellent vision out the front of the truck, especially for a conventional model, is also a big plus for the Clifford team.
“Our trucks are often operating in an urban environment, in a lot of traffic, so it is reassuring to know we have the safest trucks available,” Peter Clifford said.
The Clifford Mercedes-Benz and Freightliner trucks are sold and supported by Daimler Trucks Somerton.
“It certainly helps having both our bonneted and conventional trucks supported by the same dealership and that it’s a big plus with the Daimler products,” Mr Clifford said.
The Freightliner Cascadia range will feature on the Daimler stand at the Brisbane Truck Show to be held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre from May 13 to 16.