A quality 4x2 tractor unit can be converted to a 6x2 through the addition of an extra axle, although this is usually cost prohibitive for older vehicles. Other options are to convert the two axle tractor units into box or curtainside rigids, as demand for these types of used trucks often outstrips demand. Leading the 4x2 tractor unit market is DAF with their CF85 trucks, whilst the Mercedes Axor has been designed specifically for this type of local distribution.
The 6x2 tractor has a distinct advantage over the range of rigid trucks available. Because it is completely independent of the trailer, it means that the 6x2 can be out on the road and earning its keep while the trailer is being loaded. Back at base it can simply swap its now empty trailer for a loaded one. Clearly, this has a positive impact on productivity.
Quick turnaround and full capacity are big selling points but so is the nature of a tractor in general. Instead of being forced to estimate contract loads and future demands, the operator is able to use 6x2 tractors for almost any kind of work. This means that the operator needn’t invest in separate tipper trucks, fridge trucks, tanker or curtainsides. Instead, he need only buy the appropriate trailers or lease them when required, which is far more economical. The 6x2 tractor can also be more manoeuvrable than the same size of rigid truck and stresses can be lower as loads are shared across a number of axles. The 6x2 tractor can also raise one of its axles, when hauling lighter loads, for example, and this reduces tyre wear.
Because there is no trailer to worry about, buyers can focus more on the type of cab they prefer. The 6x2 tractor is teamed with a variety of cabs to suit most operating circumstances. These can include day cabs, sleeper cabs and double bunks. There are also more specialist short-cab and low-roof versions. Some studies have shown that 6x2 tractors are more fuel-efficient than their 6x4 counterparts, and drivers have reported an improvement in steering characteristics, with the 6x2 having less of a tendency to understeer. Although the versatility and ability to seamlessly interchange the 6x2 tractor with a number of trailers is a major advantage of the configuration, some 6x2 tractors do come modified for use in particular industries. Such modifications can include the addition of a crane mounted behind the cab to carry out loading duties. These can be efficient but will clearly reduce the load area and weight available. Some 6x2 tractor units are also modified to haul tankers with flammable liquids. These have a number of alterations included to reduce the risk of ignition and fire.
Buying a used 6x2 tractor is fairly straightforward. In addition to the normal mechanical, engine and body checks you would carry out on a rigid truck, you should make sure the axle lift mechanism is working properly if fitted and also that the trailer connection mechanism is fully operational. Modern 6x2 tractors are extremely well built and you should be able to look forward to a service life in excess of a million kilometres.
Legislation due to come in force this November sees all new commercial vehicles over 8 tonnes GVW fitted with ‘Autonomous Emergency Braking’ systems – AEB for short. This means that... Read More
he 6x2 tractor unit is the workhorse of Europe and the wagon of choice in the UK. It is these prime movers that shift the container traffic around the country and are responsible for the... Read More
The Mercedes Antos 2640 6x2 rigid is a distribution truck for the 21st century, offering compliance with the upcoming Euro 6 emissions standards. This 400hp, 26 tonne rigid is aimed squarely... Read More
Truck manufacturers have many headlining rigs, the kind that turn heads with superlative power and well-appointed cabs. They can't all be stars, though and for many trucks a simple duty of... Read More
The Iveco Stralis 450AT 6x2 tractor has long been admired as a highly competent fleet-spec rig, but married to the Active Time cab with optional high-roof configuration it is a capable... Read More
The LXL acronym on this worthy combination stands for an 'L' (low roof) on the 'XL' (Globetrotter cab). For drivers who like their creature comforts, there can be fewer used cabs around with... Read More
The three-axle or 6x2 tractor unit has become the de-facto standard in the UK due to legislation that demands the third axle for the largest 44-tonne gross train weight configurations.... Read More
Midlands Scania Truck Dealer Keltruck have delivered a top-spec R-Series Scania tractor unit to local company Alwin Ltd of Cradley Heath. The deal was carried out between Gary Hughes,... Read More
DAF is one of the biggest manufacturers of commercial vehicles in the world, and so its tractor units are sought after on the used market. The wide availability of DAF vehicles is not just beneficial when it comes to buying a truck, but also for things such as maintenance and repairs. And with tractor units ranging from compact 9-tonne models to long-haul versions with plenty of pulling power at... Read more
The DAF CF range is comprehensively configurable, but if you would prefer to pick a separate tractor unit to attach to the body of your choice, then this is an entirely viable option thanks to the number of quality used models which are available. Sitting just below the DAF XF in terms of size, a CF tractor unit is still a serious bit of kit designed for long-distance haulage and distribution... Read more
A DAF XF tractor unit comes from a range that can boast some market-leading figures relating to cab space and fuel efficiency. And this is why a used XF model can make long-haul journeys fly by at a lower cost than many of its rivals. While DAF is far from being the only manufacturer in the long-distance road transport market, the XF is an enduring reminder that it might be the best in the... Read more
ERF tractor units come in a range of 4x2, 6x2 and even 6x4 configurations, offering exceptional pulling power and durability for effortless long-haul use. Second-hand models with tried and tested technology under the skin can elicit a lot of interest from buyers, but you should not rush into a purchase without first getting an understanding of the roles that these trucks are designed to... Read more
Used tractor units from Iveco come equipped to handle any situation, with spacious cabs, competitive levels of efficiency and low maintenance costs. Its Eurocargo range is made up of units weighing between 6.5 and 18 tonnes, while the Stralis family includes much bigger vehicles, with the largest models topping out at 44 tonnes in terms of operating weight alone.
A good selection of second-hand... Read more
The Stralis is Iveco’s heavy transport truck of choice, with used tractor units from this range giving more operators the opportunity to experience the benefits that it offers. Although the Stralis has undergone a recent update, there are still lots of reasons to pick up a second-hand model, not least because this usually represents good value for money.
With Euro 4 and 5 engines on many... Read more
In a typical truck set-up, the trailer plays a passive role while the tractor unit puts in an active effort to help haul loads from A to B as quickly and efficiently as possible. This is why it is worth investing in a well-engineered, appropriately priced tractor unit if you have need of one.
And with plenty of used MAN tractor units on offer, there are lots of ways to get hold of this type of... Read more
If you need a tractor unit that can handle the rigours of long-distance transport, the MAN TGA may be a good truck to consider. The predecessor to the current TGX range, the TGA family consists of 31-tonne to 44-tonne tractor units equipped with everything you would expect to find on vehicles that are, by nature, heavy-duty road warriors.
High-roof sleeper cabs are a feature of the TGA range, and... Read more
MAN TGX tractor units are built for long-haul duties of the most demanding nature. And so that means they endeavour to offer a combination of driver comfort, safety and design dynamism to help tackle any eventuality they might face on the road. You can buy used TGX tractor units which have only undergone moderate use at the hands of previous owners, as well as older models which still have a lot... Read more
Anyone looking to buy Mercedes-Benz tractor units second-hand will have their work cut out when considering the breadth of options available. Efficient, reliable engineering is available across the board, with the range of models also including comfortable cabs in day, crew and sleeper configurations. This is a manufacturer that tends to innovate when it comes to onboard technology; it's a trend... Read more
For market-leading long-distance trucking, a Mercedes-Benz Actros tractor unit can be an ideal choice for modern operators. Clean-running, comfortable and comprehensively efficient, the Actros range has evolved into something quite special.
And used models have carved an imposing position for themselves, ensuring customer loyalty while winning new fans on a regular basis. 18- to 44-tonne Actros... Read more
The Axor range may no longer be in production, but for many years it was a model that made a name for itself sandwiched between the smaller Atego and top-tier Actros ranges. In fact, from 2005 it even absorbed the standalone Atego tractor units weighing 18 tonnes or more and became a larger part of the Mercedes-Benz truck family as a result.
Because the Axor tractor units are available used, you... Read more
When it comes to hauling a variety of trailers, a Renault tractor unit can be a reliable second-hand purchase. As well as being affordable, these vehicles are available in a range of operating weights, from 12 tonnes to 40 tonnes or more. So if you need a tractor unit to pair with an existing trailer and replace an outgoing model, consider the machines made by this French manufacturer.
Renault... Read more
The Renault Magnum range enjoyed almost a quarter of a century at the pinnacle of the truck market, making light work of heavy-duty haulage tasks and winning various accolades in the process. This means that if you want a used Magnum tractor unit, you will have no shortage of options available to you.
Magnum models from throughout its production life are still on offer, with both left- and... Read more
Renault Premium tractor units are capable of cruising comfortably and safely for mile after mile of trans-continental motorway use. The range may have been replaced by the manufacturer in recent years, but you can still find Euro 5 engines on board used Premium trucks, meaning that these models can stack up against modern equivalents without too many compromises.
Space and sleeper cabs deliver... Read more
Scania tractor units are a good choice on the used truck market, because this firm is well known for making machines that can go the distance and endure the tests and trials thrown up on the open road for mile after mile.
Being able to couple a range of bodies and trailers to one of its powerful vehicles is an advantage for a variety of reasons. And from modern R Series models to legacy units... Read more
If you need a truck tractor unit that pulls no punches, then the Scania 4 Series should shine out as a compelling option, especially on the used market where there are many fine examples available at a lower price than you might have anticipated.
The last of these 32 to 44 tonne machines were registered in the UK in 2005, having since been superseded by the G and R series tractor units. But the... Read more
Scania G Series tractor units are created to occupy an all-rounder role within the firm’s truck range, meaning that they are just as well suited for construction work as they are for distribution and long-distance haulage.
When buying a used Scania G Series, it is important to consider things such as the power and efficiency of the engine, the in-cab features and the condition of the... Read more
Rather than investing in a full truck, you may decide to buy a used Volvo tractor unit to accommodate the trailer body of your choice. And in terms of cost-effectiveness this can certainly be the most attractive option available. Large reliable tractor units are available from Volvo, with multiple cab options and a range of engine types hiding within. Long-distance vehicles with expanded fuel... Read more
The Volvo FH range of tractor units is designed for high-volume long-haul transport. And with a long era of successful international operation under its belt, buying a used FH is not just possible but also a positively sensible idea. Large cabs on this type of truck are a given, but you also get a range of creature comforts, efficient engines and plenty of axle configurations so that an FH tractor... Read more