Producing high quality, lightweight trailers that can operate in the harshest environments is all in a day’s work for Russian trailer manufacturer Grunwald.
The company is a leading producer of semi-trailers and tipper superstructures, producing more than 1,500 vehicles since it was founded in 2007. Despite its relatively short history, Grunwald is now successfully competing with long-established trailer manufacturers to supply vehicles to northern Europe, Russia and other countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States.
High quality materials are critical to Grunwald’s manufacturing, which takes place at one site in Moscow and another two in the Kaliningrad region of Russia. “Steel is the main material we use in manufacturing – and we need it to be the best,” explains Mikhail Bagin, Grunwald’s head of marketing. “The steel has to be able to withstand harsh environments as our trailers are used all over Russia. Trailers must operate in all weathers and extreme temperature and climatic conditions.”
For its steel requirements, Grunwald uses Nordic steel company SSAB as its key supplier. “We appreciate the deep technical knowledge and SSAB experts’ years of experience,” explains Bagin. “SSAB steel has been widely used in production at Grunwald for a long time.”
When it comes to steel that can operate in tough environments, SSAB’s Hardox® wear plate abrasion-resistant steel is used by Grunwald throughout its trailers. “We choose Hardox® because of its excellent resistance to both wear and the formation of dents and cracks – even in the harshest operating conditions,” explain Bagin. “Vehicles produced using Hardox® are characterised by low weight, improved technical and operational characteristics, durability, resistance to loads and improved fuel efficiency.”
In Russia, there has been a recent tightening of weight restrictions on roads, making the overloading of trucks illegal. Carriers now want to increase the legal payload using modern, lightweight commercial equipment, and SSAB high strength steel enables the trailer manufacturer to reduce trailer weight, meaning heavier loads of cargo can be transported.
“Thanks to the smaller weight of our semitrailers, our customers can transport more cargo, but still work without violating weight control requirements. That means a strong competitive advantage and greater profitability,” Bagin explains.
Grunwald trailers and tippers are now certified under the Hardox® In My Body program, which confirms that its products, have passed strict quality control and are approved as by the SSAB board. Specialists within wear and structural technology carefully analyze each application regarding welding quality, manufacturing process and design. The sign of quality with premium ingredients gives you as a user a significantly higher used equipment value.“Due to the fact that our products are certified under the program, we’re given priority access to the latest SSAB developments in materials science, applied technology and production methods, as well as prioritized marketing support” says Bagin. “This helps to make our semi-trailers even more advanced and efficient. And for our customers, it means they know they’re getting a first-class product.”
These customers now include MAN, Volvo and Renault, for whom Grunwald has manufactured tipper superstructures made of Hardox® steel. The Russian market is also interested in the tipper superstructure product, says Bagin. “We now plan to co-operate with other OEMs on developing and manufacturing tipper superstructures. And just like our other products, when it comes to our choice of hard-wearing steel, we will be choosing Hardox® wear plate from SSAB.”