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RELIABILITY RULES: DAT AUTOGROUP LAUNCHES NEW ISUZU FLEET

Competing at the top of Australia’s automotive services industry is no easy feat, but Sydney-based DAT Autogroup holds a few key principles close to heart: great sales service, reliability and a personal touch.

DAT Autogroup offers alternative vehicle transport, interstate vehicle transport, vehicle storage, car dealer services and car park recovery services nationwide. They are known for a bespoke service that customers can trust, according to National Operations Manager, Andrew White.

“Our customers continue to use our services because we keep our word on delivery and pickup dates,” he said.

“We have long standing clients with automotive dealerships, fleet companies and major carpark chains… and we pride ourselves in maintaining professional business relationships with all our clients by offering fast, outstanding service.

“Most our new business come from word-of-mouth recommendations.”

Last year, DAT Autogroup were looking to expand their medium-duty offering, bolstering their 30-strong truck fleet.

They decided to team up with a truck brand who knows a thing or two about maintaining a reputation for reliability.

Their first Isuzu truck, an FRR 107-210 AMT, performed exceptionally well as a transport car-carrier, impressing the operations team with a GCM of 14,200 kg, which makes light work of everyday towing duties.

“The Isuzu difference shows; reliability is more important than people realise,” said Andrew.

“Downtime doesn’t just cost us because a truck is grounded, it risks the reputation that we have worked so hard to earn in the Australian automotive industry.

“Ever since we purchased the FRR, we have not looked back… in fact, we’ve already replaced a number of other vehicles in our fleet with F Series Isuzu trucks.”

Other recent acquisitions include a short and a long wheelbase FSR 120-240, a long wheelbase FSR 120-260 Tipper and an FSR 140-260 Tipper with a lazy axle.

Affording operators freedom of choice to specify for the job at hand is one of the hallmarks of Isuzu’s adaptable F Series range.

A sophisticated mix of options and specifications, including both four-and six-cylinder, high-torque turbocharged engines, Meritor drive axles, steel spring or Hendrickson airbag suspension, and either Allison automatic or Isuzu ZF 9-speed manual transmissions, makes it easy for businesses to find the perfect, fit for purpose truck.

The ISRI 6860 air suspension driver’s seat (standard on all F Series models) is surely appreciated by the on-road team at DAT Autogroup, who are regularly travelling Australia’s more high-pressure interstate routes.

The majority of the fleet operate within metro areas of major cities; most getting a 10-hour workout across five or six days a week. But they’re also expected to run transport routes along the east coast, which includes routine trips to towns like Warren, Nyngan and Portland.

“Our fleet needs to be able to handle everything from metro roads to interstate freeways and the rigours of the roads less travelled in rural Australia,” Andrew said.

“This is why it is really important that our truck dealer understands our business and works with us to keep our trucks on the road.”

With 20 years’ experience in the heavy vehicle and transport industry before his current role at DAT Autogroup, Andrew is no stranger to keeping things moving.

“I’ve driven B-Doubles, road trains and oversized loads… I even used to drive a bus,” he grinned.

“Every brand of truck has different characteristics, but I have come to find Isuzu more comfortable and offering a smoother drive.

“The F Series has a spacious, well-laid out cabin with better mirror vision, which means fewer blind spots.

“They also look pretty smart when they’re stickered up in the DAT Autogroup colours!”

Andrew praised the Gilbert and Roach Isuzu Trucks dealership at Huntingwood for their sales and aftersales approach, which goes hand in hand with DAT Autogroup’s own customer philosophy.

“I cannot speak more highly about Rod Brincat and the team at Gilbert and Roach,” Andrew said.

“They took the necessary time to understand our business and our requirements, setting them apart from their competitors.

“We are always treated in a professional, kind and courteous manner, but with the extra benefit of genuine friendship… it really feels like they are part of our team, sometimes.”

The DAT Autogroup also utilises the priority service agreementIsuzu Total—choosing to service all their Isuzu trucks with Gilbert and Roach.

“Communication is key with repairs, and Gilbert and Roach exceeded every single time,” Andrew added.

“The aftersales service has been sensational.

“We look forward to expanding our fleet with more Isuzu trucks in the future.”

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