The latest addition, however, comes with a racing pedigree that could just give the family-run business a competitive edge, as it was formerly the 2015 team transporter for the JG Speedfit Kawasaki British Superbike Racing Team.
Looking at the company’s latest FH acquisition and continuing the racing theme, albeit trading two wheels for several thousand wings: S. & J. Pierce Transport is contracted to the National Flying Club, regularly travelling the length and breadth of the UK to collect racing pigeons, before taking them across to France for release. “The tractor unit’s the same,” says Partner Steve Pierce, “I guess it’s just the amount of horsepower in the trailer that will change,” he muses.
“Because of our European coverage the trucks average in the region of 150,000km per annum, so reliability is key,” he adds. “I’ve now run trucks for some thirty one years and, in my opinion, Volvo are the most reliable trucks on the market. We even have a couple of old Volvos that have covered over two million kilometres each. They just keep going.”
Over and above reliability, Steve says the drivers like the Volvo FH, reserving particular praise for the I-Shift automated transmission, which he considers to be head and shoulders above competitor offerings.
Equipped with a Globetrotter XL cab, air-suspended leather seats, microwave and fridge and featuring the 500hp, Volvo 13-litre engine, the latest, top-spec Used 4×2 FH tractor unit was delivered to S. & J. Pierce Transport with just 16,000km on the odometer.
As with all of the company’s 45-strong fleet, Steve has added a Kelsa high bar, roof-mounted air horns and Alcoa Durabright alloy wheels. “Nice, smart trucks are important when it comes to our company image and reputation and also with regards to driver recruitment and retention,” says Steve.
S. & J. Pierce Transport was started by Steve and his wife Jenny on 1st April 1986. “I drove and Jenny did the bookwork,” explains Steve. “We thought starting on 1st April was a good idea, because if it hadn’t worked out we could have said the whole thing was an April Fool’s joke.”
The company has grown steadily over the years and moved from its original start-up premises in Great Billington to its current one acre purpose-built facility in 2002. “We now have 44 employees, operate 45 trucks and have a 36-strong mix of curtainside and box trailers,” says Steve.