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Feature Article

Building for the future

ACM Metal Supply and Cartage recently added a 6x4 FUSO Shogun FV2651 to its 12-strong fleet and has a second on order. Directors Dan Dodd, Reece Clemmence and Tom Yule are so impressed with its performance, he wants to build his company’s future around Japan’s highest-horsepower truck. This is why.  

Hawke's Bay is still in cyclone recovery mode. The physical and emotional scars linger as piles of silt dominate the landscape, alongside abandoned homes and lives determined to get back on track.  

Everyone at ACM Metal Supply and Cartage has a story about what they were doing that day. Director Dan Dodd was coming home from a funeral and a few hours later his shed was waist-deep in water. He was one of the lucky ones – his near-neighbours were flooded out.  

Considering the effect Cyclone Gabrielle had on his business, which Dan, Reece and Tom purchased in September 2022, is difficult. It was responsible for a lot of clear-up work, but the emotional toll it took on Dan and his drivers was considerable. 

"I got home after the first day of clearing silt and I just cried," says Rochelle Christainsen, who is now driving ACM’s new 510hp Shogun. 

Fuso Shogun 510 on the road

The Shogun arrived from Keith Andrews in June, equipped with a four-axle alloy trailer and Transfleet Roc Tuff steel bin, and was put straight to work on the Gabrielle clean up, moving a huge volume of silt to designated dumping grounds. It also ferried huge chunks of limestone rock to help stem the flow of the Esk River, which burst its banks.  

Cutting its teeth 

Dan purchased the truck after seeing and being impressed by its performance first hand – thanks to one of his owner-drivers operating one. The price point, warranty and service from Chris Holloway at Keith Andrews sealed the deal. In fact, he’s so pleased with his new Shogun, Dan has got a second on order and plans to partner it with his bottom-dumper trailer. 

Close up of ACM Metal's FUSO Shogun 510 truck

“The Shogun has 60,000km service intervals and a five-year, 500,000km warranty – I can’t find a better plan than that anywhere.”  

Back to ‘normal’ 

Now, the 510 splits its work between a massive development at Mission Hills (which could have up to 800 homes built by the end of the project) and forestry work. It carts 28.5T of metal or groundworks waste, having completed a contract at the nearby Harapaki Wind Farm, New Zealand's second-largest wind farm with 41 turbines, generating enough to power over 70,000 average households. 

That means plenty of off-road work, which the 510 sails through thanks to its inter-axle diff lock and limited slip diff on both drive axles.  

“The truck can drive anywhere and nothing seems to stop it; the traction is excellent,” says full-time driver Rochelle. 

ACM Metal's staff standing in front of Shogun 510 truck

Traveling up to 400km a day, the routes involve lung-busting hills of up to 18% gradient as well as rough terrain, but the Shogun barely breaks a sweat thanks to the broad power and torque delivery from its 13-litre Detroit Diesel-derived OM471 engine, which generates up to 510hp and a maximum 2,500Nm (1,844lb/ft) torque from around 900rpm. The strong performance on the climbs has a lot to do with the ShiftPilot 12-speed AMT, which was extensively tested over 160,000km of Kiwi roads before the Shogun’s New Zealand release. 

The master becomes the student 

“When we first got the truck, I thought I’d be clever and drive it in manual to try and teach it a thing or two,” laughs Matt Baxter. “We were carting to Harapaki and I was climbing the Titiokura Hill (762m of elevation) in manual. The next time I did that climb, I put it into auto heavy. On the first part of the climb, the transmission picked an extra half a gear on what I could, and then on the second part it picked another half again, so by the time I’d got to the top, the auto picked a full extra gear up. I could not fault the performance at all!” 

Dispatcher Matt Baxter has driven the 510 from time-to-time, but the real expert is Rochelle. 

“It’s the quickest auto I’ve ever driven,” she says. “The power delivery is instant – it’s every bit as good as a manual, high-horsepower American truck.” 

Drone image of Shogun 510 Track

A pleasure to work with 

She also rates the manoeuvrability of the unit and says at full lock, it swings so tight “you could drive into your own trailer – it turns on a dime!”. 

Rochelle adds that the Shogun PTO makes it a brilliant spreader. 

Close up of ACM Metal's FUSO trucks

“We do a lot of jobs where there are trees, power lines, cattle stops and all sorts, but the hydraulic system in the truck is so responsive, it makes it easy to spread on tricky routes because you can get the bin up and down so quickly.” 

Dan owns a mixed fleet with five FUSOs and various American brands, taking his fleet to 12 in total. With 16 owner-drivers to call on, he can put up to 28 trucks on the road at once. Part of his plan for the future includes transitioning his entire fleet of owned trucks to the Shogun 510. 

Drone image of trucks

“It can do exactly the same job as the high horsepower trucks, but it costs less – to buy and to run. Additionally, some of the American trucks are lower than the Shogun 510 and have a habit of wiping out airlines, so we’re saving on maintenance by running FUSO.” 


Dan’s confident in the truck, but he’s also confident that Keith Andrews will be there to support him. The excellent service he receives has been key to that – especially as Keith Andrews opens on a Saturday, so the truck doesn’t miss a day of work. 

Inside a FUSO Shogun 510

Dan and his directors Reece Clemmence and Tom Yule also owns a quarry, which other contractors use, along with several diggers and some rock crushing equipment. It is a robust business model and he anticipates the cyclone clean-up will take another five years, with new developments replacing condemned houses extending beyond that.  

For Dan and his team, that work is all about helping their local community get back on its feet. With support from FUSO Shogun and Keith Andrews, the recovery effort is in safe hands.