Different countries – different regulations


The specifications for length, height and weights that are well known in Europe differ to those found in other countries on other continents. However, with the wide range of models offered by MAN, it is possible to meet all the differing country-specific requirements and specifications – for example like in New Zealand.

  • TGM, TGS and TGX deployed in many sectors
  • Local adaptations to chassis by importer Penske
  • Popular for long-haul transport: MAN TGX with D38 engine

For the “truck-and-trailer” combination, the regulations in New Zealand are as follows: maximum length of 23 metres, maximum height of 4.25 metres, and 50 tonnes of permissible gross weight. The combination of low axle loads – for example six tonnes on a steering axle – and a truck toll charge based on weight and distance means that trucks in New Zealand often have more axles than their Europeans counterparts. Here are a few typical examples of this:

MAN TGX D38 – on-site conversion to four axles

When it comes to high performance, MAN is ready and waiting with the D38 engine in the TGX series. This is only available in the Euro 6 version. In accordance with the weight and axle load specifications, chassis in New Zealand are given a second front axle. This conversion is carried out by the importer Penske. With a turntable drawbar trailer, the entire train has a total of nine axles and 50 tonnes of permissible gross train weight. On the long journeys on the North and South Islands, the large cab of the TGX series offers the driver a comfortable place to work, and plenty of space and high-quality beds for relaxing during breaks. The engine output of the MAN D38 offers good tractive power – important for safe and economical journeys across terrain that can range from hilly to mountainous. You see this vehicle combination on the roads for both long-haul transport and also livestock transport.

Kerley Bros Transport Ltd call their latest MAN TGX 35.640 with its XLX cab “The Lion King”. It is their fourth MAN – the first with the D38 engine. With their MAN vehicle, and its permissible gross train weight of 50 tonnes, the company transports cattle on the North Island. Mainfreight’s transport service provider, R & H Transport Ltd, also opted for the most powerful MAN, a TGX 35.640 with curtainside bodies on the tractor unit and the trailer. The company Mainfreight, which was founded in Auckland, quickly grew to become the most important logistics provider in New Zealand and then became an international company with sites on several continents. In Mainfreight’s New Zealand fleet, the MAN TGS and MAN TGX vehicles come in the form of 6x4 semitrailer tractors or 8x4 “truck-and-trailer” combinations with engine powers of over 500 hp.

Payload counts

The largest model of the TGM series in the MAN range has a chassis with high payload and three axles. With its light-weight, 6-cylinder engine from the D08 series and the compact C-cab, it is deployed in the construction sector or in heavy-duty distribution transport, for example. The MAN TGM 26.290 6x4 BB meets the Euro 5 exhaust gas treatment requirements that are applicable in New Zealand. This is the type that Stevenson Concrete Ltd decided to use for its fleet, which delivers ready-mixed concrete to construction sites in the conurbation of Auckland.

Manoeuvrability and payload play an important part in distribution transport. The three-axle MAN TGM 26.340 6x2-4 BL chassis, with a steered and liftable trailing axle, has been fitted with an aerodynamically optimised, approximately four-metre-high refrigerated body. The company M & J Barrett Ltd uses it for food transport on the route that connects Christchurch and Nelson. On the 420-kilometre stretch of road, the MAN truck has to cross the large chain of mountains on the South Island. The highway-like road between the two port cities runs across the Lewis Pass, which is situated 863 metres above sea level.

MAN in New Zealand

The commercial vehicles market in New Zealand registers around 3,500 new vehicles a year (with a permissible gross weight of over 10 tonnes) and offers transport companies a range of comparison options. For, this is the place where manufacturers from America, Asia and Europe come together. Asian manufacturers account for around half of the market, followed by six European brands – which together hold around a third. The rest of the market is covered by companies from the USA. As an importer, the American company Penske Commercial Vehicles has been representing MAN for the Australian and New Zealand markets since 2013. In 2019, MAN recorded approximately 110 new registered vehicles from the TGM, TGS and TGX series.