The result of high-class innovations
The resulting FH truck (with either 12 or 16-litre engines) has become a major success. Major design work had taken place to minimize wind resistance, thereby improving performance and minimizing fuel consumption. Good aerodynamics also means higher average speed and more stress on the brakes so a radical engine brake (VEB/'Volvo Engine Brake') was designed and patented by Volvo.
Safety and ergonomics were, as always in a Volvo truck family, maximized, both thanks to laboratory safety tests and to the expertise of the 'Volvo accident commission', which has investigated truck accidents continuously for more than a quarter of a century in order to improve the design of the Volvo trucks of the future.
A wide range of different applications
The FH trucks cover a wide range of applications so the specification width is very wide. Cabs are available in four different models; short day cab, sleeper cab with normal roof, Globetrotter roof with an extra high roof for more comfortable resting in the truck and (since 1995) the Globetrotter XL cab offering enormous space thanks to an extra high roof, despite the fact that this cab is designed completely in accordance with demanding European legislation, thereby permitting maximum platform/semi-trailer length.
The engines cover the range of 340 up to 660 bhp and the trucks can be specified with two, three or four axles, with one, two or even three axles driven.
Among the most successful vehicles ever
The Volvo FH range of trucks was awarded 'Truck of the Year 1994' and is today one of the most successful truck families ever, having sold more than 400,000 units since 1993. The FH range is sold in all parts of the world with the exception of North America, where legislation is unfavourable to F trucks (or 'cab-over engine' trucks, as they are designated in North America). In early 2000, the Volvo FH12 was awarded the 'Truck of the Year 2000' award, the first time a single model has received this coveted award twice.
Despite the optimal design of the FH, a great proportion of its components are used in other Volvo trucks, offering the basis of very efficient design and production. This is advantageous for spare part supply, and very much favoured by customers and Volvo as a major global truck manufacturer.