Where did that year go? It seems we were just getting warmed up and suddenly it was December!
Perhaps one of the main reasons that 2017 seemingly went so quickly was simply that the year was such a busy one, especially in the road transport industry.
Here’s a selection of some of the biggest truck/bus and road transport news stories of 2017…
The year started with a bang with January sales up better than 20% on the same month in 2016.
Hino prepared to take the covers off one of the most keenly-anticipated new trucks of 2017 – the new Hino 500 Series Wide Cab.
Also, there was some great recognition for one of the industry’s best initiatives – the Australian Trucking Association’s Safety Truck.
The traveling road safety exhibit picked up the sought-after ‘Best Trade Show’ award at the Koroit Truck Show.
In the first month of 2017, the ATA also welcomed a new federal government funded study into truck driver fatigue.
That study announcement coming just days after it was found that heavy vehicle drivers with poor health are much more likely to be involved in crashes.
And on the heavy vehicle technology front, Renault announced it was starting the 3D printing of truck engine components.
The second month of the year was trophy time for the industry with a number of manufacturers recognizing their best-performing dealerships through 2016.
On a brighter note for Hino, the 500 Series Wide Cab was launched into Australia.
Australia’s best-selling truck brand looked to the future in March with confirmation Isuzu would build a new 21,000 square metre Australian headquarters in Melbourne.
The ATA began a search for a new Chair in March following the retirement of Noelene Watson.
Iveco recognized it’s best-performing Australian dealerships through 2016 and also relaunched the International Trucks brand into Australia.
And the ATA stepped-up it’s campaign to see truck rego labels scrapped.
The fourth month of the year started off with managing director of Ron Crouch Transport, Geoff Crouch, being elected ATA Chair.
Isuzu announced Hiroshi Nishizaka as the brand’s new Aussie boss.
The Brisbane Truck Show loomed with Scania confirming it would have the International Truck of the Year on display – the new S-Series and UD Trucks announced it would unveil the new Quon at the show.
Fuso also introduced a new five-year warranty on it’s trucks and buses sold in Australia.
The Brisbane Truck Show is held with large numbers of visitors streaming into the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The Hino 500 Series Wide Cab was named the Best Light or Medium Duty Truck at the show.
In Europe, Iveco’s Daily was named Minibus of the Year.
Road safety campaigners stepped up their push for mandatory fitment of side under-ride protection in the U.S. following a new study into the dangers presented to car drivers and passengers.
Scania lost long-serving Managing Director, Roger McCarthy. Former Senior Vice President of Scania in Sweden, Mikael Jansson, took his place.
Western Star celebrated 50 years with a special event in the U.S.
And on the technology front, Volvo confirmed it had a driver-less garbage truck under testing.
The Transport Workers Union (TWU) announced a new collaboration with BeyondBlue aimed at assisting heavy vehicle drivers.
And, in a break from tradition, Cummins announced it was keen to develop electric drive powertrain technology.
A report released in July found the future was looking good for Road Trains.
There was some great news for Australian vehicle manufacturing with Iveco announcing it would start building Stralis trucks in Melbourne.
The ATA stepped-up calls for the mandatory fitment of stability control to new trucks sold in Australia.
And Hyundai celebrated it’s first Australian truck sales.
A big step ahead for electric-powered heavy vehicles was made in September with a Proterra electric bus setting a new electric vehicle world record for the longest drive on a single charge.
Mack Trucks took the covers off the Australia-bound Mack Anthem.
Iveco was in the news in October with the unveiling of the new 460hp Cursor 13 Natural Gas engine in Italy.
The growing driver shortage was named the most critical issue facing the industry in October.
Hydrogen proponents, Toyota, took the covers off a new hydrogen-powered bus, Volvo stepped-up the range in their electric-drive bus range and Volkswagen got serious about electric powertrains too.
The big talking point in the industry in the second last month of the year was the unveiling of the Tesla Truck.
Back home, Hino launched the keenly-anticipated 300 Series 4×4 into Australia and Volvo celebrated the production of the 60,000th Volvo Truck in Australia.
And the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) was amended to allow for larger high volume truck loads on Aussie roads.
The final month of 2017 kicked-off with confirmation that PACCAR would start building some DAF Trucks in Australia, while celebrations were held to mark the 60,000th Kenworth truck produced in Australia.
Scania confirmed a 2018 arrival for it’s new-generation models in Australia, Iveco confirmed a massive 110 truck order.
And a huge year wrapped up with confirmation that Chinese auto giants, Geely, had taken a big stake in AB Volvo.
We look forward to continuing to keeping you updated with all the latest Truck and Bus News right through 2018.