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The Hunt for Britain’s favourite Truck and best HGV

Every driver has their favourite HGV models, but what makes their choice the very best HGV seems to come down to a number of factors, from the mechanical prowess of the engine, to the available space in the cab, from the fancy mod cons through to being the best fuel mileage truck. 

Based on new vehicle registrations, the most popular HGV in the UK during 2018 was Dutch manufacturer DAF Trucks with over 11,000 registered on the UK market that year, 4,000 more units than the second highest, Mercedes-Benz1 but do vehicle registrations really reflect public opinion on the best HGV models?

With so many makes and models available, finding out what Britain’s favourite truck is has to come down to more than just vehicle registrations. Driver preference and industry opinion must have more influence on whether a HGV gets the title of being the best commercial truck. 

The International Truck of the year award 2020 was awarded to Mercedes-Benz for their new Actros model. A group of 24 commercial vehicle editors and senior journalists representing major trucking magazines from throughout Europe cast 121 votes in favour of the Mercedes-Benz Actros. 

Mercedes-Benz claimed the title over their competitors Iveco's S-Way long haul range and Volvo's fuel efficient FH I-Save.

Top 3 Trucks from the International Truck of the year awards 2020

  1. Mercedes-Benz Actros
  2. Iveco S-Way
  3. Volvo FH I-Save

When being considered for the International Truck of the Year title the best HGV's are judged based on their contribution to road transport efficiency and a number of other important criteria that altogether make for the best commercial truck offering. 

What makes a HGV the best commercial truck?

  1. Technological innovation
  2. Comfort
  3. Safety
  4. Drivability
  5. Fuel economy
  6. Environmental footprint
  7. Total cost of ownership

Being ranked the best HGV of the year is certainly an accolade to be proud of but while the Mercedes-Benz Actros may be the truck of many drivers dreams, here in the UK drivers seem to hold others in higher esteem when they are asked what the best HGV model for them is.

We asked you, the Blue Arrow Driving community what the best HGV models are and why. Thank you to all of you who submitted your votes, the front runners for best HGV were Scania, Volvo and Mercedes. All three of these HGV models are clearly popular choices amongst the UK driving community as TruckNetUK received identical results in their recent driver poll too.

Top 3 best trucks according to drivers at TruckNetUk2

  1. Volvo
  2. Scania Swedish owned by Volkswagen
  3. Mercedes-Benz

With reasoned arguments to support their choices including smooth steering, reliability and efficiency, drivers here at Blue Arrow and at TruckNetUk based their best HGV choices on those they have real experience in driving not just those they dream of driving someday. 

Internet search volumes for 2019 appear to support the Blue Arrow and TruckNetUk community with Scania, DAF and Volvo all outstripping the Mercedes-Benz and Iveco for the most popular searches.

Top 3 truck makes ranked by internet search volume3

  1. Scania 11.48%
  2. DAF 9.20%
  3. Volvo 8.31%

With drivers choice rankings like this, is there any wonder that the Volvo FH series is considered one of the most successful series of trucks that the world has ever seen4. Since its inception in 1993 Volvo has sold over 400,000 units and scooped Truck of the Year Award in 1994, 2000 and again in 2014. 

What makes a Volvo so great?

Their outstanding mechanical reliability and torque power prowess in the FH Series is only part of the story, the biggest driver accolade by far goes to their unparalleled consideration for driver comfort and quality of life.

Arguably the Volvo's biggest rival for the title of best HGV among drivers is the Scania V8 with its reliability and ease of servicing. Drivers seem to fall passionately into one camp or the other fiercely defending their choice. This long-standing rivalry doesn't seem to be ending any time soon but based on everything we have found and heard direct from you, the Blue Arrow driving community, the Volvo FH Series is a clear winner in the hunt for Britain's favourite truck. 

No matter what your favourite truck is, in reality you don’t always get to choose what HGV models you drive. Most of the time unless you are an owner driver you get whatever truck your employer has to offer but with a number of truck driving jobs available right now perhaps choosing the right driving job for you could come down to choosing the employer with the best commercial truck fleet. 

Take a look at our Commercial Driving Licences Explained page where you can explore vehicles by category further.

References:

1 https://www.statista.com/statistics/322478/leading-HGV-models-registered-in-great-britain-uk/

2 https://www.freightlink.co.uk/knowledge/articles/11-most-popular-truckers-trucks

3 https://www.trucklocator.co.uk/blog/truck-and-trailer-news/2019/10/what-uks-best-selling-truck-models-2019

4 https://www.truckanddriver.co.uk/latest-stories/what-is-it-about-a-volvo-the-guys-at-thomas-hardie-tell-biglorryblog-why-they-love-the-fh/

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