Since the beginning of 2014, Blue Max Trucking president Denton Williams has been aggressive in buying more trucks for his Charlotte-based company.
Williams said as 2014 began, it was apparent that local businesses and contractors were set to ramp up commercial and public construction projects. As a result, Blue Max required additional capacity to respond to their customers' need for more materials and equipment. Williams considered several truck model options, but eventually chose Kenworth's T880 flagship heavy haul.
Blue Max Trucking delivers aggregate, equipment, pre-cast concrete and building supplies for construction projects such as airport runway additions, highway widening projects and stadiums. The company, which runs 275 power units, operates from three locations - its corporate headquarters in Charlotte, N.C., and from facilities in the Charleston and Myrtle Beach, S.C., areas.
"For some time, this persistent sales rep from the MHC Kenworth dealership in Charlotte kept asking me to give a good look at Kenworth's new vocational truck - the T880," Williams said. "We wanted a truck that offered drivers a comfortable work environment and could lower our fuel bills. We also wanted a truck that would reflect well on our company's image and would be supported by a network of reliable dealerships."
MHC Kenworth - Charlotte invited Williams to attend a customer right choice event in Phoenix sponsored by Kenworth. It was there that Williams formed his own first impression of the T880. At the event, Williams personally drove the T880 on a test track and an off-road course to get a good feel for how the truck would perform for his drivers.
From left, Charts Sherwood, sales representative MHC Kenworth-Charlotte; Jeremiah Williams, Blue Max Trucking vice president; Denton Williams, Blue Max Trucking president; and Matt DeJean, branch manager of MHC Kenworth-Charlotte.
"I was impressed by the visibility and the handling of the truck," Williams said. "The T880's interior is so quiet and the ride is very smooth."
After driving the T880 in Phoenix, Williams said he saw Kenworth's newest vocational model as a must-have for his company's driver recruitment efforts. "Having attractive and comfortable trucks makes a big difference in attracting and retaining good drivers," Williams added.
Williams decided to buy 42 Kenworth T880s-38 of them equipped with dump bodies and 380-hp PACCAR MX-13 engines providing 1,450 lb-ft of torque driven through Allison 4500 RDS 6-speed automatic transmissions. The remaining four T880s are tractors also equipped with 455-hp PACCAR MX-13 engines and 10-speed Eaton UltraShift® Plus transmissions. Blue Max Trucking took delivery of the trucks starting in April 2014.
Williams said the Kenworth T880 succeeded in providing his company's drivers a comfortable work environment while also contributing to the company's bottom line with an improvement in fuel economy over the older trucks the company currently runs. The T880 has impressed Williams so much that he plans to add another 33 T880s.
"Our drivers just love the Kenworth T880," he said. "When drivers are given equipment they want to operate, it shows up in the work they do and the impressions they make on our customers.
"A truck like the Kenworth T880 enhances our company's image, which is also important to our customers because they want their equipment and supplies to be hauled in trucks that look like they're operated by trucking companies that care," he added. "I also know the T880 has got to help in enhancing our drivers' productivity."
Williams said the ability of MHC Kenworth to provide his company round-the-clock parts and service support in the Charlotte area and extended support from dealerships in the Charleston and Myrtle Beach areas contribute to Kenworth's reliability. Recently, MHC Kenworth-Charlotte's service department began offering 24-hour parts and service support Monday through Saturday at the dealership.
The reliability of the T880 and MHC Kenworth played critical roles in Blue Max Trucking's decision to order the T880, Williams said. Blue Max must often meet tight delivery windows. Late deliveries can ripple through a project and result in a domino effect of other delays.
"Our customers expect us to make our deliveries on schedule," Williams said. "Missed deliveries can cost us a lot of money and more importantly, our reputation. The Kenworth T880 and the dealer support we get from MHC Kenworth provide us the solution to stay on schedule."
Kenworth Truck Company is the manufacturer of The World's Best® heavy and medium duty trucks. Kenworth's Internet home page is at www.kenworth.com. Kenworth is a PACCAR company.