Speaking at the handover of their new 80-tonne GCW, FH-500 6×2 tag-axle tractor unit, Steve Igoe, Co-Director with his brother Michael, of Middlewich, Cheshire-based civil engineering, surfacing and site adoption management company WPI Group Ltd, explained why they continue to choose Volvo trucks: “It’s because both the Volvo product and the service we receive from Thomas Hardie Commercials is second to none. Furthermore, in my opinion, the FH is also the best looking truck on the road,” he added.

In addition to its 80-tonne plate, allowing operation under STGO CAT 2 rules, specification of the latest Globetrotter-cabbed FH to join the 12-strong Volvo fleet includes a 10-tonne rated front axle, for optimum loading tolerance. The truck is also fitted with the VTO2514B 12-speed manual gearbox and the cab spec includes the latest Volvo Sat-Nav, fridge-freezer and microwave.

Durabrite polished aluminium wheels, chassis infill, with a specially ‘nibbed’ surface finish, and white side skirts, mirror arms & heads, contribute to the eye-catching overall look of WPI’s new FH.

The FH’s side skirts feature a custom wrap depicting the early days of the company. With a striking sonic as well as visual impact, the impressive 8-inch (203mm) bore, stainless steel, twin exhaust stacks were custom made by Adrian at Truckmax in Wisbech. Ten extra lights on two light bars, courtesy of Kelsa, are mounted on the roof and the cab front lower panel. A Kelsa lower light bar with seven LED markers is fitted to the front bumper.

The FH is coupled to a new four-axle, Faymonville N-4L-UV ‘Multimax’ trailer with two steering axles. This features a hydraulically-operated extending bed which increases the trailer’s overall load carrying width by 660 mm, from 2.54 to 3.2 metres. Unusually – and a first for the trailer manufacturer – WPI specified the ‘Multimax’ with aluminium wheels. According to WPI, unladen weight of the tractor and trailer is 25,250 kg which equates to a payload potential of 54,750 kg.

WPI Group Ltd’s customers include major housebuilders as well as private and local authorities. The company carries out turn-key projects that encompass all aspects of site preparation and development, from groundworks to infrastructure installation.

Thanks to continuing growth in the business, the family-owned company, which was founded in 1979 in Sale, Manchester, by Steve and Michael’s father William Patrick Igoe, has gone from strength to strength and now operates a twelve strong fleet of Volvos, including FM eight-wheelers. A number of Volvo Construction Equipment machines are also operated, including Volvo Pavers and Artic Dumpers.

The new FH tractor unit was supplied by Thomas Hardie Commercials at Middlewich and is maintained there overnight during the week on a Volvo Gold R&M contract. Thomas Hardie also carries out ‘O’ Licence Inspections and servicing on all the other Volvo trucks in the WPI fleet.