Efficient and functional.
Transport Magazine

Efficient and functional.

Erwin Duschl relies on the economic efficiency of the new Actros F in supplier haulage operations.

The red tractor/trailer combinations of Duschl GmbH are an integral part of the automotive network in Lower Bavaria. The most important vehicle in the fleet: the Actros F.

The Duschl company couldn’t have chosen a better location: together with numerous suppliers, a dynamic economic centre for the automotive industry with tens of thousands of employees lies at the heart of the Isar valley – a hub for vehicle parts from all over the world.

“The price-performance ratio of the Actros F is just as it should be.”

Erwin Duschl, founder and head of Duschl GmbH
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Erwin Duschl owns a fleet of 170 trucks.

And, easily recognisable by its striking red livery, the fleet of Duschl GmbH – 80 percent of which is made up of Actros F semitrailer tractor units – is a permanent fixture in the diverse range of logistics operating in the background. Offices and a logistics centre above the workshops are located at the company premises.

“Reliable drivers, a little courage as an entrepreneur and business foresight are necessary to success, otherwise it is pretty difficult,” says the Bavarian who himself was a professional truck driver 25 years ago. Today Duschl transports around 2.3 million tonnes of automotive parts annually.

The fleet must also be reliable. “We need precise timing. If logistics doesn’t run smoothly, in a worst‑case scenario the assembly lines may come to a halt,” says Duschl. As was the case recently when deliveries from abroad didn’t arrive.

So Duschl is familiar with crises. “We were well able to cope with that. But things can get difficult if you’re out of operation yourself,” says Duschl, indicating his bandaged arm – an accident on his mountain bike. “The pain was bearable, but not being forced into inactivity. I did think then about delegating more responsibility,“ says the entrepreneur who is training “his right‑hand man" to be his fully‑fledged deputy.

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As the workshop manager, Michael Strasser is responsible for all things technical.

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Dominika Nokielska is involved with freight invoicing at the haulage company.

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Responsibility brings about compromise: Erwin Duschl prefers to sit behind the wheel rather than at a desk.

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The 170 trucks belonging to Duschl GmbH mostly complete tours of around 150 kilometres which demand maximum efficiency: optimum utilisation combined with a focus on the essentials.

The functional entry model, the Actros F, is therefore the ideal truck for the businessman. “The price-performance ratio is just as it should be,” says Duschl, who is impressed by the reliability and stable value of his Mercedes‑Benz trucks.

For the entrepreneur, the fact that he could combine functional equipment with Sideguard Assist was another point in favour of the Actros F. Every newly ordered vehicle that is added to Duschl’s Mercedes‑Benz fleet is equipped with the system. “Here in the region we were pioneers,” says the managing director of Duschl GmbH in Lower Bavaria’s Unterviehbach. “We used the handover of the first vehicles as an opportunity for an open day. Thus we were able to do something for traffic safety in the region by showing all those interested just what a Mercedes‑Benz truck driver can actually see when turning and what a great support Sideguard Assist can be.”

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Every day, professional truck driver Markus Phlepsen looks forward to driving his Actros.

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Erwin Duschl knows exactly how important safety is in the truck sector from his own time as a driver – as well as which equipment his trucks really need. But one extra item is a must: for the Bavarian fan of technology his Actros F trucks must include the Multimedia Cockpit with multifunction steering wheel.

He also has his eye on technological trends of the future. “I also think the eActros is an exciting prospect. I am convinced that the future will arrive more quickly than some believe.”

Photos & videos: Matthias Aletsee