Building contractor WR Harrison Brickwork has become one of the first UK customers for a new range of pre-bodied FUSO Canter light trucks supplied direct from the factory.

The Mercedes-Benz Dealer Network, which is also responsible for sales and support of the popular Canter in Britain, is now offering ready-to-work 3.5-tonne platform dropsiders and tippers fabricated in a combination of alloy and steel, and 7.5-tonne tippers in steel. Bodywork by the highly regarded Italian manufacturer Scattolini is being fitted at FUSO’s main European production facility in Tramagal, Portugal.

The new programme allows customers to put their new vehicles to work a lot more quickly than would be the case if chassis were sent to third-party bodybuilders. Finished trucks are also covered by single invoices, simplifying administration and reducing associated costs. 

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WR Harrison Brickwork, which is based in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, acquired its 3.5-tonne Canter 3C13 from local Dealer S & B Commercials. The subject of a flexible, low-cost Agility funding agreement from Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, it has a Comfort day cab and an alloy, rear-end tipping body – three-way tippers are also available for both 3.5- and 7.5-tonne variants.

Fuel-efficient and exceptionally manoeuvrable, the smaller Canter shares its larger stablemate’s ladder-frame chassis, which also gives it the strength and durability of a ‘proper’ truck. Given that most of its competitors in the 3.5-tonne GVW segment have van-based underpinnings, these qualities are making the Canter an increasingly popular choice for builders and others in associated trades who value toughness and reliability in a vehicle above all else.

FUSO Canter

Engine Size: 96-129kW (Diesel)

MPG: Unknown

Capacity: Up to 6 tonnes

Safety Features: Hill Start Assist, Parking Lock Function

Its many attributes are certainly obvious to WR Harrison proprietor Billy Harrison, whose first Canter has been quick to impress. “It’s a blinding truck!” he enthused. “We’re using every bit of the available payload and the Canter carries the weight really well, while it’s also very easy to drive and turns on a sixpence.”

An experienced and trusted contractor, WR Harrison undertakes a wide range of commercial and residential construction projects, and provides property maintenance services. The company – which employs a team of seven – works throughout Hertfordshire, and within and around the M25.

It is now using its Canter tipper to deliver sand and ballast to job sites, and carry away hardcore and other spoil. Billy, who shares the driving with a colleague, continued: “No-one wants the aggravation, if it can be avoided, of buying a new truck from a Dealer then having to go elsewhere to get the body sorted. It was brilliant in this case to have one point of contact, and to be presented with the keys to my new vehicle just one week after I made my initial approach to S & B.”

WR Harrison’s new workhorse is powered by a high-torque 3.0-litre engine producing 130 hp and paired with a five-speed manual transmission – 3.5-tonne Canter variants are also available with a 150 hp version of the same engine, and with the twin-clutch DUONIC automated transmission.

Mercedes-Benz Dealers have now received allocations of Scattolini-bodied Canters, which are available for as little as £66 per week (subject to Terms & Conditions). Joe Castronovo, FUSO Canter Sales Specialist at S & B Commercials, said: “The new campaign offers huge advantages to operators like Billy, who would have been looking at a turnaround time of eight to ten weeks had he gone to one of our competitors and purchased a vehicle in the conventional way.”

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