Chorley, Lancashire-based Ruttle Plant has updated the company’s famous high-profile livery to coincide with the arrival of a new Volvo FH tractor unit. Supplied by Thomas Hardie Commercials, Preston, the new FH features a ‘high-visibility’ modern take on Ruttle Plant’s familiar and unique, multi-colour paintwork.


“We designed the new livery to suit the lines of the new Volvo FH cab,” reports Ruttle Plant Director Gareth Ruttle. “The company is working hard to build on the success of its heavy haulage business for operators outside the Ruttle Group of companies and the new livery helps raise the profile.”

The Globetrotter XL-cabbed 6×4 double-drive FH is equipped with the D13C-540 engine and I-Shift automated transmission. Although it usually operates at around 60-tonnes GCW, the truck is actually plated for CAT2 STGO operation at up to 80-tonnes GCW. “The higher plated weight allows for a degree of flexibility when transporting the wide variety of machines we move for outside customers,” says Gareth.

A typical job would involve moving a 50-tonne machine, including bucket and attachments, to anywhere in the UK. The new FH stays coupled to a 4-axle Faymonville trailer which features two self tracking axles to aid manoeuvrability.


Unladen weight of the steel-wheeled 6×4 double-drive tractor unit, reports Gareth is a competitive 9200kgs. Annual mileage is expected to be in the region of 90,000kms. The new FH is also equipped with Volvo’s fuel saving construction software package.

More individual touches include polished chrome trim strips to the cab grille and a roof-mounted Kelsa light bar. Colour keyed mirrors and sun visor complete the stunning appearance.

Back-up from Thomas Hardie Commercials is good, reports Gareth, with regular parts deliveries from their Preston depot.

The new truck is the third Volvo to join the Ruttle Plant fleet in recent years. The others, both Classic FHs, are 500 and 540hp 6×2 tag-axle tractor units on ‘61’ and ‘62’ plates.

The performance of the first two trucks helped persuade Ruttle Plant make the decision to purchase a third, the new FH: “We liked the I-Shift, the fuel economy and the build quality of the Classic FHs,” says Gareth before concluding, ”We’re very impressed with the new FH. It gives a smooth ride and pulls well, fully-laden, from a standing start, even in the wet.”