Limiting trucks’ need for speed

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Limiting trucks’ need for speed
DAF the latest brand Pioneer Trucks is distributing locally, says company managing director Aaron Go. -- ARIES BELZA ESPINOSA

By Aries B. Espinosa

FUELED by the Duterte administration’s directive to “build, build, build” more infrastructure and road networks, the construction industry and all other allied sectors are now riding on the expected surge of activities.

And among those enjoying an economic resurgence is the trucking and transport industries. For the third quarter of 2017 alone, truck sales of 32,993 units are an impressive 14.1% increase compared to the same period last year, latest combined figures from the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. and the Truck Manufacturers Association indicate.

More than merely riding on this wave of economic opportunities, one truck importer and parts and services provider, Pioneer Truck Parts and Equipment Corp., has chosen to highlight the need for a speed limiter installed in heavy haulers.

As Aaron Go, managing director of Pioneer Trucks, put it, “Countless lives depend on the thousands of trucks plying our busy streets, not just for the economic activity they bring, but more importantly, for the sheer size of these vehicles as they make their way along the busy roads surrounded by pedestrians and residents.”

Mr. Go recently toured journalists around Pioneer Trucks’ sprawling plant facilities in Cabuyao, Laguna. First stop was the 8,000-square-meter covered truck repair and maintenance yard. “From windshield replacement, brake repair and engine overhaul or replacement, all major and minor jobs are done in this facility by our well-trained personnel. We also have an extensive inventory of truck parts and accessories,” he pointed out.

Mr. Go also announced that Pioneer Trucks has been the exclusive distributor of the Speed Limiter device, which could be installed in-house or on-site. “We have already installed Speed Limiters to truck fleets of major logistics companies and truck manufacturers, such as Isuzu Philippines Corp.,” he disclosed.

The Speed Limiter electronically controls the top speed of vehicles — either to comply with government legislation or the vehicle owner’s requirements — without affecting any other aspect of the truck’s operation.

“Aside from reducing road accidents by controlling the vehicle’s speed, the Speed Limiter also helps improve fuel consumption and emissions,” stressed Mr. Go.

The device controls the fuel flow system (for vehicles without engine managements) or by a drive-by-wire system. “The ECU is connected to a speed signal [electronic speedometer, ABS or mechanical sensor] and receives frequency signals while the vehicle is moving. At a preset frequency, say 80kph, the ECU transmits a signal to the engine management system, which then holds down the vehicle’s speed. The operator/owner can preset the maximum speed of the truck or van as he wishes,” Mr. Go explained.

Besides preserving the vehicle’s engine because of the RPM and speed control, the Speed Limiter would immediately equate to cutting down on fuel costs. The rev control system ensures to correct driver behavior and driving style, which is crucial in an urban environment. “Our objective is for all fleet owners to extend vehicle life, improve economy, reduce maintenance costs and promote public safety,” said Mr. Go.

The plant tour was capped with a visit to the future showroom of the Dutch-made DAF Trucks, of which Pioneer Trucks would import, along with other globally known truck brands such as Kenworth, International and Peterbuilt.

The journalists were also allowed to experience how the Speed Limiter works, as they were made to test-drive a truck and a Ford SUV that are equipped with the device.

As a family-owned and operated import based company that wholesales and retails US and Europe-made truck and trailer parts for nearly a decade, Pioneer Trucks is at a “crossroads,” according to Mr. Go.

“The upward trend in the industry is very encouraging,” he observed.

But instead of the gung-ho “full speed ahead” battle cry that most trucking companies would adopt, Mr. Go and his team apparently would rather take things slowly but surely.