Transmaraña: making container transport profitable – Actros and RoadEfficency are the solution
Business & Logistics
The customers of Transmaraña are mainly engaged in the metalworking industry, but they also include a manufacturer of sporting goods. Transmaraña also handles orders from major global forwarding agencies.
As anyone following the news would know, Spain has been experiencing serious economic problems over the last 10 years. The country has been hard hit by the Lehman crash and the euro crisis. The government was forced to implement drastic cost-cutting measures. Unemployment reached new record highs. GDP has shrunk in most of the years since 2008. Not exactly an ideal climate for a transport and logistics enterprise.
Despite these difficult economic conditions, Transmaraña managed to achieve steady growth throughout. Bastián started work as a driver in 1985 before embarking on his own business together with his father. They named their company after the small town in the “Montes de Leon” mountains from where their family originally came: Maraña. And they have kept the corporate structure of the business lean ever since. Today the company with its 45 permanent employees generates almost five million euros in revenue per annum.
In addition to their fleet of trucks and trailers, Transmaraña also operates a small fleet of vans, and immediately adjacent to their head office in an outer suburb of Gijón, their own warehouse, a service station open to the public, and a truck wash facility.
How has that been possible during a time of macroeconomic headwinds? “Well, at no time did the crisis actually bring the Spanish economy to an absolute halt,” explains Bastián. “We have been able to continuously convince our customers of our efficiency, and this has allowed us to stay in business and always be in an economically sound position.” It was this economic strength that enabled Transmaraña to continue to invest even during the most difficult periods – for example, in the construction of their state-of-the-art warehouse, or their modern fleet of trucks. “These are investments that are now paying off doubly during the slight economic recovery we are witnessing: on the one hand because we are in a position to be fully operational and, on the other, because we can offer our services at competitive rates thanks to our modern assets.”
The Actros – offering as it does low costs, maximum safety and maximum utilisation, in line with the RoadEfficiency philosophy – represents a key component in this scenario, and that is why it will be assuming a more prominent role in the Transmaraña fleet in the future. Aarón Bastián González: “Although the cost of acquiring the Actros is relatively high, the investment is well worth it: the overall economy of the vehicle is simply unbeatable.”
RoadEfficiency at Transmaraña.
The RoadEfficiency concept of Mercedes-Benz Trucks once again delivers proof of its worth at Transmaraña. Not having been a customer of Mercedes-Benz Trucks until recently, the Spanish transport company is now including an increasing number of Actros trucks in their fleet. The success of the RoadEfficiency concept is based on three pillars, which together ensure that trucks can be deployed with maximum efficiency:
1. Low total costs.
For Transmaraña boss Aarón Bastián González it was the favourable consumption figures of the Actros in particular that made him decide to give the star a go as part of his truck fleet. Over 100 kilometres, the Actros uses two litres of diesel less than the fleet’s most economical truck from another manufacturer. The low consumption figures at Transmaraña are made possible through the use of innovative technology, such as the second-generation Euro VI in-line six-cylinder engine OM 471 fitted in the Actros 1845. The Predictive Powertrain Control results in additional savings in diesel fuel. Furthermore, the Fleetboard Performance Analysis that is also in use at Transmaraña records and evaluates the truck’s technical data. The results can be used to provide targeted training to drivers who still need to improve their fuel-saving driving style. The low repair and maintenance costs, the high residual value as well as attractive leasing and financing conditions also contribute to the efficiency and low total costs of the vehicles.
“With the Actros, even the standard equipment is way above average.”
– Transmaraña boss Aarón Bastián González
2. Greater safety.
Mercedes-Benz Trucks has been developing innovative safety systems for over 45 years now. Mercedes-Benz Trucks is continuing this pioneering effort with the enhanced versions of the Active Brake Assist 4 and the new Sideguard Assist – introducing two safety systems into road transportation that provide drivers with additional support in situations where there is a risk of colliding with pedestrians. And there is still more: ABS and ASR, the electronic braking system, the Lane Keeping Assist, the Stability Control Assist, and the Attention Assist – they all contribute towards an improved level of safety. Transmaraña boss Aarón Bastián González started out in his career driving a truck himself: “With the Actros, even the standard equipment is way above average. Being on the road in charge of 40 tonnes means being responsible for the safety of life and limb of our fellow human beings as well as for the valuable cargo. This is why safety must be given top priority in heavy road haulage.”
3. Maximum use.
Transmaraña carries containers and other cargo to the Spanish ports, which operate under strict government regulations and where access is restricted. Punctuality therefore enjoys top priority. This can only be achieved with trucks that do not require unscheduled stops and which provide a high annual average vehicle use. For Transmaraña, the basis here is the reliability of the Actros and the all-round care-free service agreements. The company also intends to trial the Mercedes-Benz Uptime service contract. With this service, fleet managers can constantly monitor the technical condition of their trucks and can take timely action so as to avoid having to call in the breakdown service. The need for urgent repairs is detected without delay, repairs are facilitated thanks to the availability of information in real time, allowing repairs and maintenance to be scheduled at the most suitable times. In addition to the intelligent networking of vehicles, dispatch and workshops through Mercedes-Benz Uptime, the transport management using Fleetboard also boosts the hours of operation of the trucks, thanks to the efficient communication between the drivers and the dispatch unit.
Photos: Matthias Aletsee