It is the largest order ever for DAF Trucks in South America: 200 trucks ordered by transport company GRUPO PRODES in Colombia. The vehicles are all three-axle CF 6×4 tractors for the distribution of beer, soft drinks and tropical fruit to inhospitable areas.
GRUPO PRODES is one of the largest transport operators in Colombia, with a fleet of around 1,500 trucks and 2,000 trailers. With its head office located in Medellin Antioquia, the company also has depots throughout Colombia; a country similar in size to France, Germany and the Benelux put together. Much of GRUPO PRODES’ operations are with a large Colombian brewery. The transport operator also specialises in the refrigerated transportation of tropical fruit.
‘A different class’
The phased delivery of the 200 DAFs has just begun following extensive testing of the CF by GRUPO PRODES. “We operate a multi-brand and multi-chassis fleet so we have lots of vehicles we could compare it with. But in terms of reliability, fuel efficiency, manoeuvrability and driver comfort, the DAF CF is really in a class of its own,” says Federico Medina, Director of Transport at GRUPO PRODES. “We are so convinced by the quality of the truck that we increased our initial order of 150 trucks to 200.”
Prepared for tough conditions
In terms of appearance the DAF trucks will look much like standard specification CFs, but, technically, they are being prepared for a very tough working life. “GRUPO PRODES has ordered heavy-duty chassis with extra robust tandem axles for maximum traction, which will enable the vehicles to operate day in, day out under the most demanding conditions,” says Johan Doensen, DAF Trucks’ Area Sales Manager Sales Operations.
The trucks will be supplied and maintained by DAF dealer Kenworth de la Montaña, which has 14 workshops in Colombia and specializes in both the DAF and Kenworth brands.