This Giti Big Test is like one of those footy matches that live up to the good old cliché – that it’s a game of two halves.
Which is fair enough, because that’s exactly the sort of life that our test truck leads.
New Zealand's first Kenworth T909 with a 36-inch mid-roof sleeper cab is a Taumarunui-based heavy-haulage tractor unit – devoted to shifting heavy machinery (mostly forestry loaders, haulers and the like) around the King Country and, more widely, around the central North Island.
It involves a real mix of on-highway and off-highway operation. So, typically enough, today’s test first saw the Central Equipment Movers unit deliver a secondhand heavy log-loader from a yard in Taupo…to a logging crew working on a farm woodlot near Otorohanga. Almost all strictly main road running – “a cream run,” as driver Kyle Gibbs describes it.
Traditional all-rounder is the way Kenworth describes the T909 model. But it’s more than that – it’s a trucking icon, a truck driver’s dream ride….
And in this day and age of technology, innovation and efficiency it’s funny to have a truck like this on the roads and for it still to be seen as the pinnacle of most truck drivers’ careers. You can’t help but get excited about driving it.
Kyle Gibbs has had the privilege of being thrown the keys to a brand-new T908 back in 2007…..and now getting to drive the country’s first T909 36-inch mid-roof sleeper.
Kyle, Taumarunui-based with Central Equipment Movers, has a logging loader that needs to be delivered from Taupo to a farm block just out of Otorohanga – and I take over the wheel from Wairakei.