A Thirst For Power

The trucking industry has a thirst for power in our trucks. DAF has heard our pleas and upped the power available in its CF85 prime mover.

Quite often the art of designing a new truck is not designing and building something from the ground up, but instead mixing and matching the components available in a different way to solve a particular application issue. There are plenty of other examples of these evolutionary developed models running on our roads, now there’s another, the DAF CF85 with a 510hp Paccar MX engine.

The DAF CF85 has been the most successful of the DAF models brought into Australia in the past twenty years by Paccar. It is also successful for the company in Europe. The size and shape of the truck fits neatly into a lot of intrastate or around-town type applications. The truck is simplicity itself to drive, climb in and out of and get into tight corners, and it doesn’t look bad at all.

If there has been one criticism levelled at the DAF range, it is the lack of high-power ratings at the top of the range. This fact has stifled sales of the bigger X105 prime mover, which is fitted with the Paccar MX375 engine rated at 510hp, not really enough for a top-end prime mover in the modern trucking industry.

Similarly, sales of the CF85 were limited due to the fact the biggest engine fitted was also the Paccar MX, but rated at 462hp, not quite enough for operators who wanted a flexible truck in the fleet to handle most situations. DAF, here in Australia, has now stepped up to the plate and introduced the more powerful 510 MX variation into the CF range.

The CF model has been available here in Australia for a good while and the engine is also performing well in both DAF and Kenworth chassis installations. Operators using the CF must have started asking for a bit more power and those running the larger DAF XF105 began asking for a smaller, lighter cab.

It may be a surprise this configuration hadn’t been thought of before, but it is probably more of a surprise how quickly DAF were able to turn the idea into a project, and then into a truck in the market – about nine months.

In fact, the process proved to be less arduous than it could have been. All of the components involved have been available in the Australian market for some time and have proven their durability in our conditions. There was no re-engineering required as all of the pieces of the jigsaw were designed to fit together.

The only question mark was about the efficacy of the combination, of the smaller, lower cab with the 510hp engine’s cooling system. This was easily assessed, a CF model was built with the 510hp engine and put on the roads of Australia, as a test bed for the concept. Unsurprisingly, the cooling system handled the task with alacrity and the CF 85 510 became a reality.