FAW Trucks is fast becoming one of the true success stories of the South African commercial vehicle market. Continuously reaching new sales heights since its first locally produced unit rolled off the assembly line in 2014, the renowned Chinese brand now has a 15-strong range of commercial vehicles in different body derivatives on that caters to virtually every need and application.
Competing in the medium, heavy and extra-heavy commercial vehicle segments, FAW Trucks celebrated a major milestone in its local history in January this year when it took the top spot in the heavy commercial vehicle (HCV) segment of the local market for the first time. It repeated this impressive feat in the following month and with total monthly sales over all models currently hovering around the 160-unit mark, it outperforms well-known European and Japanese brands.
“The reason for our continued growth and success in South Africa is that we cater for virtually every need,” explains Jianyu Hao, CEO of FAW South Africa. “With a host of different engine capacities, payload allowances and body options on offer, businesses big and small can rely on our products to get the job done.”
The FAW Trucks range of freight carriers consists of four models.
The 6.130FL (3,5-tonne) is the smallest commercial vehicle on offer from FAW Trucks and has a body and payload allowance of 4,7 tonnes. It has the distinction of having the lowest cost-per-tonne running costs on the local market and boasts a Cummins ISF 2.8-litre common-rail diesel engine, a fully synchromeshed WLY six-speed manual transmission and parabolic spring suspension for enhanced stability and comfort. Additional standard features include air-conditioning and a radio with MP3 and USB functionality.
The 8.140FL (5-tonne) competes in the HCV segment of the local market and has a body and payload allowance of 6 tonnes. Providing seating for a driver and two passengers, it features a spacious and ergonomically designed cab, while air-conditioning and a radio with MP3 and USB functionality are standard. It is fitted with a Euro 3 Cummins ISF 3,8-litre engine, a ZF six-speed manual transmission and a full air dual circuit WABCO braking system with ABS.
Featuring a spacious and ergonomically designed semi-sleeper cab, the 15.180FL (8-tonne) has a body and payload allowance of 9,8 tonnes. Standard features include air-conditioning and a radio with MP3 and USB functionality. Its Euro 2-compliant 6 557 cc, six-cylinder, in-line turbocharged engine is linked to a fully synchromeshed six-speed transmission and it has a full air dual circuit WABCO braking system with ABS.
With a body and payload allowance of 17 tonnes, the J5N 28.290FL (13.5-tonne) is the largest of the freight carriers. Used mainly for longer hauls, it has a full floating, ergonomically designed sleeper cab. Its 9.726 cc, six-cylinder, in-line Weichai WP10 diesel engine is turbocharged and intercooled, and linked to a nine-speed fully synchromeshed manual transmission. A full air dual circuit WABCO braking system with ABS is standard.
FAW Trucks has four truck tractor derivatives on offer.
The 15.180FT 4×2 is fitted with the same engine, transmission and braking system as the 15.180FL (8-tonne) freight carrier. Specification levels are also the same.
The J5N 28.380FT 6×4 is similar to the J5N 28.290FL (13,5-tonne) freight carrier in terms of engine capacity, transmission and braking system. It is renowned for achieving excellent fuel consumption figures over harsh South African terrain.
One step up is the J5N 33.420FT 6×4. This model has a fully synchromeshed 12-speed manual transmission, full floating ergonomically designed cab and reinforced bumper. It features a 11 600 cc, six-cylinder WP12 diesel engine that is turbocharged and intercooled, and with a 600-litre fuel tank, it too boasts impressive fuel consumption figures.
The largest of the truck tractors from FAW Trucks – the JH6 28.500FT – is a long hauler’s dream, featuring a full floating extended-roof cab with an innovative flat floor design for optimal comfort and a spacious interior. Its 13-litre, six-cylinder common-rail turbocharged and intercooled diesel powerplant produces 370 kW at 1 800 r/min, has 2 300 Nm of peak torque on tap at 1 400 r/min and is commonly referred to as China’s most efficient engine. It is mated to a ZF 12-speed TraXon AMT transmission, with parabolic spring suspension front and rear to address vehicle weight requirements. A full air dual circuit WABCO braking system with ABS enhances the long hauler’s safety features.
FAW Trucks offers buyers five tipper derivatives to choose from.
First in the line-up is the 8.140FD (3 cube), offering all the same features as the 8.140FL (5-tonne) freight carrier.
Then comes the 15.180FD (6 m³), which is similarly specced to the 15.180FL (8-tonne) freight carrier and the 15.180FT 4×2 truck tractor.
The J5N 28.290FD (10 m³) is better suited to more challenging applications. It resembles the J5N 28.290FL (13,5-tonne) freight carrier and the J5N 28.380FT 6×4 truck tractor in terms of its engine, transmission and braking system. The tipper body is manufactured from 850 high tensile steel, making it the ideal construction partner.
With its robust full floating hub-reduction tipper, the J5N 33.340FD (15,5 m³) is well suited to mining applications. As is the case with the aforementioned J5N 28.290FD (10 cube), the J5N 28.290FL (13,5-tonne) freight carrier and the J5N 28.380FT 6×4 truck tractor, its 9.726 cc, six-cylinder, in-line Weichai WP10 diesel engine is turbocharged and intercooled, and linked to a nine-speed fully synchromeshed manual transmission with a crawler gear designed to provide power and extreme stability for heavy-duty assignments. Again, a full floating semi sleeper cab and a full air dual circuit WABCO braking system with ABS are standard.
These specifications also apply to the J5N 35.340FD (18 m³), with its full floating ergonomically designed sleeper cab, the only difference being its larger tipper.
FAW Trucks has only two mixer derivatives on offer.
Both the J5N 33.340FC (6 cube) and the J5N 35.340FC (8 m³) have 9.726 cc, six-cylinder, in-line Weichai WP10 diesel engines that are turbocharged and intercooled, and linked to nine-speed fully synchromeshed manual transmission. The mixer bodies are manufactured from durable 4/750 GJ material and the water tanks are aluminium alloy.
For added peace of mind when purchasing any of these 15 derivatives, FAW Trucks has a large parts warehouse at its premises in Spartan, from where it supplies the four main regions in Gauteng, Durban, Harrismith and Cape Town. In addition, service dealers are fully equipped, with highly trained technicians on hand for complete servicing and repairs.
“All models in the current range of FAW Trucks sold in South Africa represent the strength, reliability, affordability and ease of operation that the brand and its products are renowned for. Most importantly, though, each model delivers on the promise of a ‘truck built in South Africa for Africa’. These are truly home-grown trucks, but with an impressive international pedigree,” concludes Hao.