Since its inception in 1807, Dutch company Mammoet has become a global entity, focusing on heavy lifting and specialised transport services, with trucks and equipment working on all continents, including a growing presence in Australia.
However, it would be fair to say that around the world there are more vehicles in miniature wearing the Mammoet colours than their 1:1 scale counterparts, with a wide range of Mammoet scale models and toys keenly sought after by collectors.
Mammoet, in association with Brisbane-based Drake Collectibles, has released a number of Australian-themed models in 1/50 scale over the last few years which mimic the equipment range working in Australia. Initially a Mercedes Benz and Drake 4×8 Swingwing float was released, followed a few years later by a Volvo FH Globetrotter with ballast box.
Proving to be a big hit in 2020 was the Kenworth T909 and 7×8 Steerable float, which sold out worldwide in a couple of days, whilst the recent Brisbane Truck Show saw the release of a Kenworth C509 and triple road train trailer set.
The launch is also a first for Drake. With a number of Kenworth C509s having been on the market in various company liveries for a number of years, it is also the first time Drake has released trailers in a triple-road train configuration.
Paul Gregoire, who manages the Mammoet Collectibles enterprise from the company’s headquarters in Rotterdam, travelled to Brisbane to attend the launch and chat to collectors about the Mammoet model range which includes trucks, trailers, cranes and a variety of associated lifting and transport equipment.
“The models we have developed with Bruce Hay from Drake show what we can do together,” Gregoire said.
“From our traditional European models like the Volvos we were very surprised with the amount we sold here and also the feedback we got from the Australian collectors which led us to make new models for the Australian market.”
A point of difference between the Australian Mammoet fleet is the colours, with trucks predominantly white with the red stripes, as opposed to the black-on red colours used across the Mammoet fleet in other parts of the world.
This, along with the unique features of Australian trucks is also a factor in the appeal to collectors globally, according to Gregoire.
“The Kenworth T909 is a beautiful truck as a typical Australian model, we produced it as a limited edition, and it sold out in two to three days. Now we have the C509 and triple road train, overseas collectors like to have something different other than a European truck such as a Mercedes Benz or a Volvo – the collector market globally loves these Australian models.”
Along with the growing number of scale models, Mammoet also has a variety of toys and merchandise catering for all ages, with the children’s toy range in particular becoming a popular choice around the world.
The toy range extends from ‘indoor’ plastic truck toys and building sets through to the outdoor ride-on excavators and tip-trucks among other things.
“We wanted to get connected with our younger transport fans and it has really grown over the last couple of years. Last year we sold 150,000 toys in 40 countries and this will also help us get more collectors in the future.
“We are growing the market, outside of Europe is our focus, and it’s amazing the number of people over here in Australia who know our company and what we do, it’s very positive to see, gives us a new energy to make things bigger and better.”
From his base in Holland, Gregoire has a global focus and believes that taking the ‘show on the road’ and talking to the collector base directly at events and shows such as Brisbane is one of the best ways to gain feedback, and therefore improve and develop the model range and build the Mammoet brand.
“I have the best job in the world,” he said with a smile. “I love my job and what we do and to understand the passion of our collector base, it is more important to go to the shows and get the feedback from the customers to plan for the future. The collectors world-wide all have the same passion and ideas – you can have a collector from Holland, the UK, Canada or Australia. At the end of the day they all want the same thing, and their passion for the brand is amazing.”
*The C509 and Freighter Trailer set is due for release worldwide in early July and will be available from Drake retailers in Australia or online via the Mammoet Store. Visit store.mammoet.com.