Fuso has refreshed its Ready Built range with a number of new ready made body options included in the model list. Diesel News took a look at the new models and drove a selection of them for a run around the city of Canberra.
A combination of factors have meant the truck manufacturers at the lighter end of the market have begun to sell trucks with bodies already installed. The trend began in the early 2000s with light duty Japanese trucks coming into the country with factory-fitted tipper bodies already installed in Japan. Over the years the offering of ready made bodies on trucks has broadened to a wide range of shapes and sizes.
Fuso calls its trucks sold with bodies its Ready Built range, which now includes a wide range of options from the small tipper body, to the tradies alloy tray, to a simple pantech body, refrigerated body and a curtain sider. These come in multiple shapes and sizes with a number of options for the truck buyer, if required.
These Ready Built bodies mean the truck dealerships around the country can have a selection of trucks on their forecourts which are ready to go. A customer can walk into the truck sales area, choose a truck, pay for it and pick it up next week. This is ideal for a customer who wants a generic body and is not looking for a particular unit customised specifically for the application for which it will be used.
Although this trend to Ready Built began with tipper bodies fitted in Japan the rest of the bodies on offer are built here to the specifications set out by Fuso in Australia. The designs exemplify the kinds of fitments Fuso sees its customers sourcing independently and, with careful design selection, is able to cover a relatively high proportion of the needs of truck buyers.
Ready To Go
The original and most basic of the ready built options is the 615 City Cab Canter Tipper, based on the narrow cab short wheelbase Canter at the lighter end of the range. The tipper is available at a GVM of six tonnes, the only one of its kind on the Australian market. A redesign of the chassis includes an integrated strengthened box section chassis to support the tipper tray, doing away with the need for a subframe.
This is a small short wheel base narrow truck designed to meet the needs of operators like domestic landscape suppliers, who may need to get the truck into narrow back yards in Australia’s suburbia.
Normally sold with the five speed manual gearbox behind the three litre 150hp engine, it can also be specified with the six speed Duonic dual clutch AMT gearbox. The tipper body has a 2m2 cubic capacity with a length of 3050mm and a width at 1780mm.
The laws of physics and dynamics work against comfort in a truck this size carrying these sort of masses. The short wheelbase coupled with firm steel springing to cope with the fully loaded tipper can often lead to a surprisingly bumpy ride. In fact, the ride in this small Canter is relatively smooth with the double acting shock absorbers taking out the worst of the bumps. Although pretty basic, this truck is a typical Fuso product, simple to drive with a no frills, get the job done attitude.
The 815 Canter tipper is the next step up for the weekend warrior or the landscape supplies business. Capacity has been increased by 40 per cent over its predecessor and an upgrade in the GVM to 7500kg gives it an extra one tonne payload. This truck also uses the 150hp three litre engine with the six speed Duonic as standard. A limited slip differential is also standard and a five speed manual version is also available.
Out on the road, the slightly longer and considerably wider wheelbase make this a very stable little tipper and, again, a potentially rough ride is minimised with a well set-up suspension system.