Greenwood Landscape And Isuzu Keep The Sunshine Coast Shining
“Sunup to sundown” is how Greenwood Landscape Management’s Regional Director, Mark Kemen, described the typical workday at Greenwood Landscape.
Beginning at their Sunshine Coast office even before the sun rises, Mark and his team are briefed on the projects for the day, then load up their new Isuzu NPR 45-155 Tipper and head out to tackle their jobs.
As commercial landscapers, Greenwood does upper-market residential projects, as well as anything else you see in outdoor public areas—everything from laying turf to building boat ramps, beach accesses, barbecue huts, footpaths and playgrounds.
Greenwood’s story didn’t begin on the Sunshine Coast, but further south, along the Gold Coast. The business was founded in 2005 by Paul Green and Alan Woodger, with their one truck and their first employee, Mark Kemen.
As Greenwood grew larger, having expanded from the Gold Coast and establishing also in Sunshine Coast, Mark and his team became a staple in the Sunshine Coast community, growing to employ 16 staff members and possessing an inventory of two Isuzu NPR 45-155 Tippers, five utes and a 1.8-tonne excavator.
Greenwood’s ability and vision has landed them contracts with the Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay, Gold Coast and Byron Bay councils, servicing all the councils’ landscaping needs.
With the variety of work they do, especially in the communities for the local councils, Greenwood needed a versatile powerhouse.
“We needed something that didn’t need a Medium Rigid or Heavy Rigid licence but could still carry a decent load, as well as the excavator, around with no dramas,” Mark explained.
Enter Isuzu’s NPR 45-155, ticking off Mark’s criteria checklist with the ability to be driven on a car license, and all with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) of 4,500 kg and a gross combination mass (GCM) of 8,000 kg.
On top of the NPR’s GVM and GCM ratings, the truck has a power of 114 kW @ 2,600 rpm and a torque of 419 Nm @ 1,600–2,600 rpm – making light work of transporting the excavator to and fro.
“At Sunshine Coast, we often had to float the 1.8-tonne excavator around on trailers behind the utes or even tilt trays, and the Gold Coast crew would do the same with their bobcat—and then we’d have to leave them at job sites, which was a pain.”
So after doing some research and getting feedback from different people, Mark jumped at the suggestion of an Isuzu NPR 45-155 Tipper, taking the idea to his directors at head office.
“Then I pushed for a second Isuzu for us on the Sunshine Coast and got the all clear, so we bought that from David Alberg from Madill Isuzu.
“I like to keep our expenditure to the Sunshine Coast and support local businesses, and there was no point buying a truck elsewhere and then having to transport it to Sunshine Coast,” Mark said.
And it’s Greenwood’s commitment to giving back into the community that has made them a staple of the local community.
“We sponsor a number of programs, events and organisations, such as the Currimundi State School’s Surfing Excellence Program; the Sunshine Coast Gymnastics Academy; Pa and Ma Bendall Memorial Surfing Contest; Currimundi Catchment Care Group; Caloundra Panthers Australian Football Club; Currimundi United Football Club and WindanSea Boardriders.
“A few on our team help out with the rural fire service as well… we’ve always prided ourselves on supporting the community,” Mark said.
Support and adding value are big things for Greenwood, in addition to trust, honesty and hard work. And when it comes to their capital equipment, they expect nothing less than what they give—which made Isuzu trucks an irresistible draw.
Mark said, “We looked at getting more utes, and we looked at another Japanese truck brand, but they just didn’t compare.
“Isuzu gives you a truck anyone can drive on a car licence, they’re big and comfortable; we can fit three guys in them, load them to the hilt and we can never seem to overload them.
“They look unreal and they’re easy to drive and maintain.
“The NPR has a big engine as well; it almost feels like it’s got the displacement of a V8 and pulls like a freight train.”
The benefits of Greenwood’s NPR came in all different shapes and sizes, one of them being the ability to cut out unnecessary delivery costs, making the jobs cheaper for Greenwood and their clients.
Mark explained, “We’re saving on delivery costs as well, every now and then we need a couple metres of material to finish a job, so instead of paying for delivery we can get it ourselves.
“Plus, any of the boys can get in and drive our Isuzu NPR on a car licence… Previously, it was too limiting for us to have a vehicle that only someone with a truck licence could drive.”
Mark found even greater economic benefits in their Isuzu, as they found their NPRs have greater whole-of-life cost savings compared to other work vehicles and other brands.
Mark laughed and added, “I’m working on upgrading the utes to Isuzus.”