The great thing about the shorter supply line from Europe to South Africa in terms of new model introductions is that not only do we get the latest truck technology coming out of Europe, but we also we get to share in the international accolades that are afforded new model introductions – when they happen.
In the ‘old days’ South Africa would wait some three to four years before receiving new truck models launched in Europe. Now, we get them soon after their launch debut and it is thus that operators who have bought the new Volvo FM model which was launched in South Africa earlier this year along with the new FH16, FH and FMX ranges, can take pride in the fact that they are operating a truck that has won the international Red Dot Award 2021 in the Product Design category for commercial vehicles.
The Red Dot Award is an international design competition founded more than 60 years ago. Excellent design is selected by expert juries in the areas of Product design, Communication design, and Design concepts. Products from more than 60 countries took part in the 2021 competition.
The distinction “Red Dot” has become established internationally as one of the most sought-after seals of quality for good design. The award competition was started at Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen in Essen, Germany back in 1955 and today’s Red Dot Jury comprises some 50 international experts.
The new Volvo FM has been designed with an uncompromising purpose: To be the optimal work tool for a wide range of transport assignment, with the driver always the primary focus.
Volvo FM’s development followed extensive surveys and customer interviews which confirmed the importance of the driver’s contribution to transport companies’ profitability and image. The design team therefore set out to design the best mobile office in the industry, resulting in a versatile truck that is agile, spacious and most importantly, safe and comfortable for all drivers.
“The Red Dot award is a great acknowledgement of the creative work of the Volvo Trucks design team. The award highlights a well-balanced Volvo FM, creating business value with this desirable truck. By purposeful design of the exterior, interior and user experience, we are improving the daily lives of our drivers and keeping our society running,” says Carin Larsson, Volvo Trucks Chief Designer UX.
The new Volvo FM offers numerous innovations that combine to deliver a higher level of comfort, safety, and productivity. Examples include the spacious new cab and improved visibility by using a lowered door line, as well as new rear-view mirrors and an optional passenger corner camera that gives a complementary view of the side of the truck. The Volvo FM can also be tailored to enable significant fuel and CO2 savings.
The interior is highlighted by a new dashboard and a dynamic 12-inch high-resolution instrument display. The user-friendly interface is designed to simplify the driver’s interactions and minimize distractions when accessing critical information, and is ready for future updates and connected services.
The exterior design of the Volvo FM emphasizes its versatility for different applications. The cab has a new aerodynamic shape with clean, distinctive lines. The V-shaped headlamps generate instant recognition, and the design of the robust front grille gives the vehicle a bold, confident look.
Driver pride is so important in this sector and FleetWatch urges all operators who have bought the new Volvo FM to let their drivers know they are behind the wheel of an international design winner. It’s something to be proud of.