Smart, spacious and reliable vans backed by flexible and cost-effective Mercedes-Benz Service Contracts provide the perfect recipe for success for Thomas the Baker.
The company, which is based in Helmsley on the edge of the North York Moors National Park, is running two new Sprinter 313 CDIs with insulated Long bodies which arrived via the York branch of Dealer Northside Truck & Van.
Thomas started buying Sprinters a little over two years ago and 10 of its 16 vehicles now wear the famous three-pointed star.
Production Director Steve Simpson said: “Our vans start work at 3am, which is not a time you want a van to break down, so reliability and top-quality back-up are of paramount importance.
“Our Sprinters have proved to be extremely tough and dependable. If ever we have even a minor problem the service team at Northside Truck & Van are very flexible, and will always do their utmost to fit us in at short notice. They’re real ‘commercial vehicle people’ and understand the needs of a business like ours.”
The operator pays a fixed monthly fee for its Mercedes-Benz Service Care contracts, which offer the peace of mind of knowing that all costs incurred in routine maintenance are covered.
“This is a new system for us,” continued Mr Simpson. “We’re trialling it, and have been impressed with what we’ve seen. The rates are highly competitive and the regular payment makes our running costs much more easily predictable.”
The new vehicles also represent a departure in terms of their body design. Like their predecessors they have food-grade insulated conversions by GRP, of Leeds. This time, though, they have no refrigeration units – instead, each is fitted with a small chilled compartment kept cool by removable ice packs which are frozen overnight at the bakery.
“Our delivery runs are quite short – typically taking no more than two hours – and the ice packs are well capable of maintaining temperatures between 2 -5oC within that time window,” explained Mr Simpson. “It’s a simpler, more cost-effective system, and well suited to our operation”
He added: “We’re delighted with our Mercedes-Benz vans, and will continue to replace the remaining vehicles from our previous supplier with more Sprinters.”
Thomas the Baker has been supplying high-quality food products to the people of North Yorkshire and beyond for more than 30 years. Its chain of 34 shops and two cafes, which extend from Richmond in the north to Wakefield in the south, receive as many as three deliveries each morning from the Helmsley bakery.