Following a tender process, Renault Trucks has been selected for the first time to supply Reading Borough Council with ten replacement vehicles for its 240-strong fleet.

Beating off competition from four rival manufacturers to win the contract, and achieving the highest evaluation score across all of the criteria, Renault Commercials in Reading has delivered seven Range D12 tippers, with a D16 tipper grab, D18 tipper and C2300 18t gulley sucker on order.

The Range Ds join Reading Borough Council’s highways and drainage team, carrying tarmac for road surfacing work including drop kerbs and fixing potholes across the Borough.

The vehicles are fitted with a Gardner Denver onboard compressor for the pneumatic tools and vehicle security when the driver is out of the cab, which was an important factor for Reading Borough Council as Fleet and Transport Assistant Manager Tom Howes explains: “We need to keep the engine switched on to run the compressor and with the driver working outside of the truck, there is an obvious security issue. The ‘Key Out System’ allows the key to be removed from the ignition but keeps the truck and tools running seamlessly without the worry of the vehicle being stolen.”

Protecting vulnerable road users was also paramount and the Range D’s Vision Passenger Door with low down window provides improved side visibility, as Tom Howes says: “Reading Borough Council is committed to doing everything it can to look after the safety of other road users and the Range D’s Vision Door is a vital feature, especially in the busy urban environments where these vehicle operate.”

Fitted with Optitronic 6AS 800 automated gearbox and automated clutch, the D12s have six forward and one reverse gear, with operation mode control and gear selection at the steering wheel.

Introducing a new brand and model into a fleet can have its challenges but Tom notes that the initial driver feedback for the Range D has been positive. “We are always mindful that we need to impress the drivers and, thankfully, the transition to the Range D has been pretty seamless.”