Volvo truck, F6S - 1970


In 'the old days' there were distinct differences between different sizes of trucks: light trucks had a small engine and were intended for light loads on good roads. Medium duty trucks were the link between light and heavy-duty trucks, and primarily intended for distribution transport only, while heavy-duty trucks were intended for a wide variety of purposes, from construction-site tasks to long-distance transport.

Mixing a number of great features
Today, the improved efficiency of engines even of smaller size together with computer-aided-design mean that it is possible to design 'smaller' trucks which can perform heavy-duty tasks, at least as long as no trailer is attached to the truck.

At the time the F6S was introduced it was mostly the heavier family member 'F7' which was the focus of the attention. But the F6S was in fact a very interesting truck, where Volvo had created a mix of a medium-duty chassis, rugged design and a very efficient turbocharged engine with a performance well in excess of its formal engine capacity.

A "small" heavy-duty truck
The F6S was a close relative of the F6 truck presented in 1975. The chassis was fairly similar to the design of the heaviest F6 version (F613/F614) but strengthened even more. Even though the F6S was considered as a powerful medium-duty truck, its formal GVW of 16,000 kg (earlier 15,500 kg) meant that it was strictly speaking a heavy-duty truck, but intended for a smaller range of transport applications than the more powerful Volvo trucks with larger engines.

Normally, the F6S was only marketed as a two-axle truck for distribution operations, but its very low kerb weight was utilized in places like the UK, where the F6S was used also for construction site transport, and was even tried in three-axle model with successful results.

Developed in cooperation
The cab was identical with the day cab of the F7 truck, and closely related to the F4/F6 cab, but wider. It had also, in fact, been developed in cooperation within the 'Club of Four', but it was only Volvo and Renault that used this particular wide, cab version. The Volvo cab was of course stronger than the Renault version, and was designed to withstand the severe Swedish cab safety test regulations. The engine was identical to the engine in the most powerful F6 truck. It was, of course, direct-injected and turbocharged.

The F6S was only produced in the ultra-modern assembly facility in Oostakker, Belgium, in parallel with the F4/F6 trucks. It was superseded by the strongest version of the FL6 in 1985.