Belfast-based FJM Logistics, which claims to deliver up to 5,000 parcels per day, is expected to more than halve the number of tyres it fits across its 37-strong van fleet over the next 12 months following a move to Michelin Agilis CrossClimate tyres.
The move follows a trial which saw two sets of ultra-durable 225/65 R16 Michelin Agilis CrossClimate all-season tyres fitted to a pair of 3.5-tonne Mercedes-Benz Sprinters which went on to average 9,705 miles on the front axle, with no punctures or damage recorded.
This compared with just 4,104 miles for the firm’s budget tyre of choice, and 5,962 miles for a rival premium brand occasionally fitted.
Commenting, FJM Logistics managing director Fraser Orr explains: “We’d reached the point where we were sending at least one of our vehicles to the tyre dealer every single day for new tyres. The admin task alone was huge, and we were conscious of the financial and environmental impact.
“Our vans work intensively on multi-drop deliveries seven days a week. Incidents of kerbing can be high, given the nature of our work, but we knew there had to be a better tyre solution available.”
Within weeks of the Michelin trial beginning, the difference in performance was immediately obvious, according to Orr.
“Tyre wear dropped dramatically with the Michelins, and the wear we did see was evenly spread across the surface of the tyre, and not concentrated on the shoulders,” says Orr. “The kerbing protectors also do a fantastic job of guarding against sidewall damage – we’ve not had any issues at all.”
Commenting on the total cost of ownership, he adds: “We are paying more per tyre with Michelin, but we’re fitting far fewer tyres. We’ve done the calculations and it has reduced our tyre spend, and that’s before we factor in the improvements in uptime.
“Plus, there’s the environmental savings too, as fitting fewer tyres is reducing both our carbon footprint and consumption of raw materials.”
As one of several fleets delivering parcels for the same online retailer in Northern Ireland, Orr intends to share his experiences with other local firms.
“Any successes we get, we share with the others; that’s how it works,” he says. “We are confident we’ve found the sweet spot for van tyre performance, and in an application which is traditionally very heavy on tyres. We expect there’ll be a lot of interest.”
Orr is also looking forward to seeing how the tyres perform during the winter. “With the Agilis CrossClimate tyres being an all-season fitment, we are confident they will help us to keep our deliveries on track when we get snow and ice. Being able to deliver, whatever the weather, will be hugely advantageous – particularly as our workload intensifies in winter.”