VOLVO Trucks South Africa has opened a new R130-million dealership facility in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, to support the growth of the brand’s vehicle numbers in the region.
The new facility is strategically located in the Riverhorse Valley Business Estate, which is easily accessible from the N2 highway, connecting it to all the major transport and logistics corridors to Gauteng and the rest of the region. The dealership employs 67 local staff, including 23 qualified diesel mechanics and five apprentices.
“We foresee that the recent announcement by SANRAL on the upgrading of the N2/ N3 highways will have a positive impact on the region’s spatial connectivity, and thus the ease of doing business in this area,” said Marcus Hörberg, Vice President of Volvo Group Southern Africa.
“We believe in the future growth potential of the city, and that is why our new Durban Truck and Bus Centre was designed and developed to offer our customers the latest Volvo Trucks specifications in terms of ergonomics, sustainability, equipment and technology.”
Hörberg was speaking before the current spate of unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, and it was unknown at the time of publishing whether the facility had been targeted by looters.
The new dealership is situated on 37 000m² of land and offers, amongst others, a service workshop with 17 bays, pre-delivery inspection, test workshop including a bay for servicing LNG vehicles, secure trailer parking and an extensive parts warehouse.
“It is large enough to allow for smooth and efficient flow of vehicles through the workshop, reducing congestion, cutting booking lead times and limiting unnecessary downtime for customers,” said Hörberg.
“We also focussed a lot of attention on the wellbeing of drivers and offer an overnight facility for operators should a vehicle come in late in the day for servicing. It ensures a safe and comfortable space for both male and female drivers with separate ablution and sleeping facilities, as well as a communal kitchen, lounge and outdoor space to relax.”
The development also took the environment into consideration, with energy efficient lighting, a 20 000-litre water recycling plant in the wash bay, increased temperature control and more efficient hydraulic tools now in use. All waste and discarded lubricants are also safely removed, treated, and recycled by a professional waste management company.
The second phase of the dealership’s development will see solar energy installed to supply electricity to all four buildings, which will bring the facility closer to its target of becoming a carbon neutral facility.
“Environmental care has been a core value since the 70’s. Since then, we’ve reduced the emission of air pollutants from our trucks by up to 90%. And decreased fuel consumption and CO² emissions by 40%. We believe in sustainable transport solutions, and we are confident that our trucks, services and operations will lead the way there,” explained Hörberg.
The company has also already engaged with the local community to explore and support the specific needs of the people in the area. Furniture and equipment from the old Volvo Truck and Bus Centre in Pinetown was donated to the Quarry Heights Primary School, and more projects are planned to make a positive contribution to the society the dealership operates in.
Volvo Trucks South Africa’s head office is in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng and it also has an assembly facility in Durban. The company has 19 dealer facilities across South Africa.