Scotland’s first high-spec Mercedes-Benz Actros Actros LS took to the road in the colors of the Fraserburg-based GA Kellogg operator.
The two 2546 tractor units are also the first new vehicles supplied by Aberdeen Dealer BLS Truck & Van to a customer who previously preferred pre-owned examples.
The Actros L sets new standards in the long-haul and heavy-duty distribution sectors. In addition to a full suite of Mercedes-Benz’s proven technologies, it comes with a host of new features that deliver further improvements in efficiency, safety and comfort.
Features include advanced aerodynamics, a quieter cabin with improved thermal insulation, and a lower, more comfortable seating position that also provides improved visibility.
The Actros L badge now applies to all four- and six-wheel tractor units with single or dual drive axles, 18- and 26-ton rigid chassis, which has a GigaSpace flatbed, BigSpace – as selected by JA Killoh – or Stream. An area wider (2.5 m) than the two widths.
Being 2,546 variants, the latest operator trucks use 10.7-liter six-cylinder engines producing 340 kW (460 hp).
Explaining the decision to purchase new cars for the occasion, rather than high-quality, pre-owned examples, owner James Killoh said:
“The used truck market is very strong at the moment and that is reflected in some of the prices.
Chris Dyer of BLS Truck and Van is a good seller. He is very professional and nothing is too much of a problem for him. Chris told me about Actros L and I liked the sound of it, so I decided to order a pair, and we were also “dedicated” with refrigerators and microwaves.
It’s still early days but first impressions are definitely positive. Drivers tell me they are really quiet and comfortable, while in terms of fuel consumption, the new trucks are already at the upper end of our fleet average 9-9.5 mpg. Obviously, I’m very happy with that.”
Mr. Killoh founded his company in 1974 and initially operated dump trucks to support the development of gas stations in the North Sea. Over time, move on to temperature-controlled work and blinds.
Today, JA Killoh operates 20 tractor trucks from its head office and yard in Cairnsleed, on the outskirts of one of Europe’s largest fishing ports. All but two of these trucks wear three-pointed stars – an almost complete reversal of the situation four years ago, when another manufacturer could claim the entire fleet.
The operator keeps its vehicles in-house but relies on the team at BLS Truck & Van for parts supply and technical assistance. The dealer has been servicing Mercedes-Benz and FUSO truck customers in northern Scotland since being appointed by the manufacturer in 2018.
Mr. Killoh remembers:
“We’ve run a lot of Mercedes-Benz trucks in the past, and they’ve always been exceptionally reliable. Aftermarket support was the problem, though. We walked away from the brand because service in this part of the world wasn’t always up to standard.
Things are definitely back in shape now. Since BLS Truck & Van took over, there has been a noticeable improvement in performance. Any spare parts we need are always readily available and if we ever have a problem we give them a ring; She is very helpful and will do her best to solve the problem for us.”
JA Killoh is heavily involved in delivering seafood products – processed, rather than fresh – to supermarket RDCs across the country. Most of this work is performed in temperature-controlled trailers in Fraserburgh by Gray in Adams. While the ‘coolers’ are finished in special JA Killoh livery, some Dennison side curtain trailers are named after leading client International Fish Canners (Scotland).