At a glance
Make & Model: Daf XF 530
Engine: Paccar MX13 13-litre six-cylinder Euro 6D
Power: 530hp @ 1675rpm
Torque: 2600Nm @ 1000-1460rpm
Gearbox: TraXon 12-speed automated manual
Operator: Daniel C Lote Transport
For any truck enthusiast, getting to watch a truck being built in a factory is a rare treat. But to watch the actual truck you are going to be driving being put together on the factory floor is on another level entirely. But owner-driver and dyed-in-the wool truck fan Dan Lote got to do just that at Daf’s Leyland assembly plant back in 2019. With the old maxim “if you don’t ask, you don’t get” ringing true, he got the opportunity by asking the Greenhous Daf salesman, Liam Smith, when he was discussing the specification for his new truck.
“When we were going round the factory, we first saw it as a rolling chassis, then later we saw them lift the cab on, and by the time we had come to the end of the day, they had finished the truck so I got to sit in it and have some photos taken before we returned home,” says Dan. “At Leyland, they have the truck on a big conveyor and once they have started it doesn’t stop moving, it goes along at walking pace and everyone has their own jobs as they assemble it. Everything is spaced out on the production line, so they have enough time to do what they need to before it reaches the next person – it’s very clever.”
Dan plumped for the Daf XF 530 Superspace FTP with lightweight midliftaxle and, as it was his first new truck, he went for a high spec too. Greenhous Daf in Shrewsbury supplied the XF, which has front air suspension, full leather interior, heated and air-con seats, and a microwave. There is an air-con unit on top to keep the cab cool when the engine isn’t running. On the exterior Dan has fitted Bailey perimeter lights, an illuminated headboard, air horns and Durabright alloy wheels.
“I can’t fault Liam Smith at Shrewsbury,” says Dan. “It is a bit further for me to go to than some other dealers but I have always stuck with them because I know them and we get on well.”
He got the truck on the road in April 2019 and since then has periodically had things added, such as side skirts and a catwalk. “The truck has had several visits to James Burrow Fabrications in Milnthorpe in Cumbria,” says Dan. “Instead of me having it off the road for too long, every time I go on holiday, they have had it for two to three weeks to get things done. Rather than having it off the road for two months, it made more sense for it to be done this way and spread it out.”
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