DAF CF 8x4 review

"Many of the safety systems you may expect on a top of the range tractor unit are not offered as standard such as lane departure warning, stability control or adaptive cruise control."


The construction site and Daf Trucks make a perfect combination. It’s no big secret that Daf Trucks has been looking to the rigid market and while the distribution sector takes a large proportion of the sales, construction also figures heavily, especially when we are talking about multi-axles.

Of course, the construction industry has many requirements and various specific ‘mission’ vehicles such as the cement mixers, tippers and brick carriers, so diversity is the key.

To cater for this, Daf Trucks has a wide range of offerings including three- and four-axle models with various steered axles and bogie suspension alternatives such as tag, lift, trailing and pushers.

Among all these, perhaps one of the most popular models is the ‘traditional standard’ Daf CF 8x4 FAD for general tipper work, although recently many people point to the increased interest in tridems in this sector.

Daf employs a series of acronyms after the basic axle configuration such as FAT, FAW, FAG, FAS and so on; in the case of the FAD, it’s the 8x4.

The 8x4 is available with two engine sizes and six power ratings from 372PS to 537PS. The Paccar Euro 6 MX-11 is the lead-in engine starting with a power rating of 372PS and 1,900Nm of torque, this is followed by the 414PS with 2,100Nm and finally the top-rated power setting for this 10.8-litre engine is 455PS and 2,300Nm of torque.

The most powerful Paccar engine is the MX-13 and, as the name suggests, it’s the 12.9-litre version. Power for this engine starts in between the MX-11’s power ratings at 434PS with 2,300Nm of torque, and then has a 490PS setting with 2,500Nm of torque, finally the most powerful available on the 8x4 is the well-known and highly respected 537PS with 2,600Nm of torque.

Both engines employ variable geometry turbocharging, exhaust gas recirculation and use AdBlue to help adhere to Euro 6 emission standards.

Sitting behind either engine is the TraXon 12-speed automated gearbox, or there’s an option of the gearbox in either manual or automatic transmission.

There are four wheelbases on the FAD, starting with the short wheelbase 5.05m, which is measured by Daf from the centreline of the front axle to the mid-point of the rear bogie. There’s also a 5.3m, 5.7m and the maximum wheelbase is 6.4m.

These wheelbases offer a body length on the day cab models from 5.67m to 8.06m, obviously dependent on the type of operation and the loading characteristics of the operation.

If a sleeper cab is required, these figures go from 4.83m to 7.64m dependent on whether you select the standard sleeper cab or go for the top of the range Space cab.

The two front axles sit on steel suspension with shock absorbers and anti–roll bars and are both rated at 7.1 tonnes with the option of higher weights if required.

The rear bogie consists of a relatively new axle set SR1132T, which is a 19-tonne tandem with single reduction, available with steel or air suspension.

The MX engine features an effective engine braking system helping to save money on the service line brakes. The front axles feature ventilated disc brakes while the rear tandem bogie is fitted with drum brakes.

Many of the safety systems you may expect on a top of the range tractor unit are not offered as standard such as lane departure warning, stability control or adaptive cruise control, but this is no surprise as an eight-wheeler often spends its time on different types roads (and off road!) more than a top-of-the-range XF.

There are three CF cabs available, a day, sleeper and a top-of-the-range Space cab all 2,300mm in width and offering tinted glass, electric windows, electrically and adjustable heated mirrors and LED daytime running lights.

Inside, the trim colour is a ‘Dark Sand with Black Rock’, according to Daf and there’s an air-suspended driver’s seat, automatic temperature control as well as a manual-controlled glass roof hatch.

Daf Trucks has been concentrating on the multi-wheeler sector over the last few years and it has re-designed their product offerings to better match the market. Its CF 8x4 FAD is a great example.

Standard warranty is 12 months complete vehicle, second year driveline and first year breakdown.

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.