Bodies with thermal insulation TÜV-certified for the first time - Cooperation: off-road body new to the portfolio - Germany: construction vehicles generate two-thirds of sales volume
The Austrian Schwarzmüller Group has started a product campaign designed to further improve its portfolio for the construction industry, and has entered into close cooperation with an innovative vehicle manufacturer. The focus lies in technical and technological innovations in lightweight construction, digitalisation and drive technology. This was announced by CEO Roland Hartwig today, Tuesday, 9 April 2019, at bauma, the international trade fair for the construction industry held in Munich.
Schwarzmüller’s planned product campaign is being launched with a TÜV Südcertified thermally insulated body which is being premiered at bauma. According to Hartwig this is the first time that any such vehicle has been awarded a TÜV seal of quality. It involved a commitment from Schwarzmüller to adhere to strict regulations during the entire manufacturing process. In return, Schwarzmüller receives confirmation from TÜV that the vehicle contains no thermal bridges and
meets the relevant DIN standard. “We assume that this certification will have a positive impact on investment decisions. It provides the certainty that the strict standards for delivering mixes to road construction sites will be upheld,” Hartwig stressed.
Another development project noted by the CEO is a tipper body with new digitally controlled functions: air control, lowering mechanism and lift axle are controlled via iTAP. In the thermal body version, the vehicle offers digital monitoring of the core temperature, with the temperature profile documented in detail via a read-out device to enable end-to-end verification.
A new semitrailer for construction materials with patented load tie-down will also be launched. It uses a new and variable stanchion system developed by Schwarzmüller.
Specialist for heavy off-road transport
The Schwarzmüller Group will enter into close cooperation with the innovative vehicle manufacturer Benzberg based in Schörfling on Lake Attersee, in the Austrian province of Upper Austria. The young company specialises in developing high-end construction vehicles, with a focus on heavy off-road transport. Their vehicles are highly robust and powerful and increase profitability. Consequently, Benzberg’s vision is in total harmony with that of his company, namely to deliver customised vehicles guaranteed to add value, said CEO Hartwig. In a first step Schwarzmüller will incorporate Benzberg Tridem, an off-road capability tipper body with slope compensation and wheel drive, into its programme, further expanding its construction vehicle portfolio.
Benzberg founder and CEO Herbert Schneeberger believes that future potential lies in the chassis below the truck body. He has developed modular steering and drive systems at his company that permit innumerable configurations. Individual requirements can also be met by applying special technical solutions above and beyond the modular system. Currently, up to eight axles can be easily coupled with one another in a huge variety of combinations. Wheel drive systems of up to 120 kilowatts and slope compensation of up to 50 centimetres are further properties offered by Benzberg vehicles. In addition, he has also developed monitoring systems which provide vehicle information and permit the vehicle to be controlled, both in real time. Applied research in areas including materials, steering multiple axles and wheel drives at the company’s in-house workshops and laboratories provide the basis for these technical developments.
He is confident that cooperation with Schwarzmüller creates a win-win situation: Benzberg can contribute its expertise in vehicle development which further expands the technical options that Schwarzmüller can offer its customers. In turn, Schwarzmüller offers Benzberg access to international markets, as well as the chance to industrialise new developments.
Value management for every customer
Schwarzmüller has developed a modular system for construction vehicles, which is designed to add value, Hartwig noted. Performance is not determined by the manufacturer’s preconfigured, mass-produced tippers, but by the requirements specific to the customer’s particular area of application. “At Schwarzmüller it is the customer who determines what a vehicle must be capable of,” says the CEO. During consultation five dimensions are applied to determine the target configuration.
For example, twelve different body types are available for various transport materials. They range from the full-aluminium body from 3 tonnes upwards for sand to the Hardox steel body from 8 tonnes upwards for hard-edged rubble. The bodies can also be supplied with watertight covers for the transport of sewage sludge or grain. The chassis can be adapted for use in a variety of environments according to the particular ground surface. A 2-axle tipper behind a 3-axle allwheel truck is recommended in the soft/muddy/loose category, while other combinations perform better on gravel tracks and asphalt. The new Benzberg body is ideal for transport over grassland as a tractor trailer.
During loading and unloading the load can either be tipped out onto open terrain or pushed into a covered space. The surface of the body serves to further improve the high rollover stability of Schwarzmüller vehicles. The interior lining facilitates quick and even tipping, preventing the abrupt slippage of transported materials with a tendency to adhere to the body, which can unbalance the tipper. The operator-friendliness, ergonomic handling, automated functions and control via digital devices are all designed to assist the driver. Hartwig listed, as examples, electronically controlled chassis, load-dependent lift axles, the electronic stability programme and electric sliding covers with remote control function.
The environmental criteria which Schwarzmüller vehicles fulfil include reduced CO2 emissions resulting from sliding covers, lift axles and lightweight construction, as well as watertight bodies which allow loads such as sewage sludge to be transported safely with no danger to the environment.
The vehicle is configured in line with the combination of the five value management dimensions, and can even be produced according to individual dimensions. The thousands of customers who use Schwarzmüller construction vehicles to generate revenue operate under a hugely diverse range of conditions. Accordingly, at Schwarzmüller the focus lies not on uniformity, but on individual requirements to maximise benefits. This value management is a Schwarzmüller Group USP, and one which will have a much greater impact in the market in future, Hartwig announced.
Construction vehicle sales volume up by 137 per cent
Against the backdrop of a strong international construction industry, construction vehicles have been a driver of growth at the Schwarzmüller Group since 2013. In 2012 Schwarzmüller manufactured 1,767 construction vehicles; by 2018 this figure had risen by 137 per cent to 4,188. The share of total output also rose significantly, from 29 per cent in 2012 to 45 per cent in 2018. Hartwig expects this figure to increase to over 50 per cent in just a few years. He adds that this development is a reflection of company strategy, because Schwarzmüller is able to optimally apply its technical expertise in the production of complex construction vehicles.
In recent years Germany has become the company’s largest single market for construction vehicles. Here construction vehicles generate as much as two-thirds of the sales volume. In 2018 this figure was 1,760 vehicles, while in 2012, at the start of the current growth phase, it was just 560. That represents an increase of 214 per cent, and lies significantly above the general growth rate of 137 per cent. Other key markets for this vehicle group are Austria, Switzerland, Poland and Slovenia.
Customisation with standard delivery times
The largest production site for construction vehicles is Žebrák in the Czech Republic, where last year 1,600 steel tippers – the company’s most important product – rolled off the production line. Special vehicles for the construction industry are also manufactured in Austria, while the aluminium tippers are produced at the plant in Hungary. As the result of completely new production methods, production capacity for construction vehicles has been raised in all three plants. Schwarzmüller now uniformly applies assembly-line production, and optimises its production lines through computer-controlled vehicle sequencing. Among others, this allows vehicles which are frequently customised to be produced in the same period of time as required by standard models, Hartwig said. Timely delivery currently runs at more than 90 per cent.
Forecast for 2019: further increases planned
The Schwarzmüller Group plans to produce 9,900 vehicles during the current year. This includes 4,900 vehicles in the construction segment, up 17 per cent from 4,188 vehicles in 2018. Consequently, this segment could exceed 50 per cent of overall vehicle production for the first time. bauma, too, will be a strong impetus towards achieving this goal. Positive effects from the new site in Eltmann, Bavaria, are also expected as early as 2019. Vehicles produced in the Czech Republic and Austria are transferred to this site for collection by German customers. This location now offers the entire portfolio of Schwarzmüller services, from workshops to rental vehicles.
For further information:
Mag. Michael Prock, Prock und Prock Marktkommunikation GmbH, Press Officer
Rochusgasse 4, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Email: mpprock-prockat, Tel.: +43.662.821155.0
The Schwarzmüller Group is one of Europe’s largest full-service providers for towed commercial vehicles. Alongside its three production locations in Austria (Hanzing, in Freinberg), the Czech Republic (Žebrák) and Hungary (Dunaharaszti, near Budapest), the company operates in 21 countries, predominantly in Central, South-Eastern and Eastern Europe. With its focus on the premium sector, the company sets industry benchmarks and with more than 140 years of experience is the specialist for individual transport solutions in demanding industries. These include the construction, petroleum, raw materials and recycling industries, as well as long-distance transport. In 2018 the Schwarzmüller Group manufactured 9,306 commercial vehicles, employed 2,290 people and generated 376 million euros.