Outlaws Roam

In July 2023, Aussie Angles7 MinutesBy Gavin MyersAugust 19, 2023

There’s something neat about owning one in a series of, well, anything… And while one in a series of special trucks doesn’t come around too often, brand fans love getting their hands on them. Enter the Outlaw series of Mack Super- Liners – created by a small Mack dealer in New South Wales – that have taken the Australian Mack scene by storm.

Sometimes, the coolest of things come from the most unassuming of places. Tamworth’s JT Fossey Trucks may be “only a small country dealer”, as dealer principal John Saint describes it, but with a history that goes back to 1937, it’s as well entrenched in the region as the vehicles it sells are in the industry.

The association between JT Fossey Trucks and Mack began in 2008. “We’ve built a lot of Mack trucks in that time, fitting all types of accessories and trying to make them look flash for the owner – and obviously for our profile as a dealership too,” comments John. The idea was formed for the Outlaw series at about the turn of the decade. It was seen as being able to create a bit of a legacy for John – whose career in the transport industry began in 1993 as a salesperson for JT Fossey Trucks – and the team at the dealership.

Outlaw 2.

Outlaw 3.

“I thought, what could we do differently? We bought a Super-Liner, which is the top of the tree for Mack, and decided to fit every possible accessory to it and give it a distinctive paint scheme – something someone wouldn’t normally do – and market it and see what happens,” John explains.

Outlaw No.1, with its eye-catching red colour scheme, sold in March 2020 within two weeks of being on the market to an operator in nearby Gunnedah, who hooked it up to a set of water tankers.

“I picked red because it’s a popular colour with many operators. I thought if any colour truck is going to sell, it’ll be red. For the second one, we decided on black, another good colour people tend to favour. It sold overnight to Western Australia and is hauling a low-loader.”

By now, John realised he was onto something and Outlaws No.3 (blue) and No.4 (green) soon followed. They’re NSW-based too, and both on B-double/road train work. “All the trucks so far are out there currently working. No.2 has clocked up 380,000km,” John says.

So far? Yip… Outlaws No.5 (maroon) and No.6 (purple) have been sold, with No.6 going into build in November. John says the series will run to 10, with No.7 being crimson and the final three fittingly rounding off the series in bronze, silver and gold.

Outlaw 4.

Outlaw 5.

So how do you build an Outlaw? Each truck comes off the production line at Mack’s Wacol plant as an identical Super-Liner with 58in high- rise sleeper. Up front is the venerable 16L, Euro-5 MP10 rated at 510kW (685hp) and 3180Nm (2345lb/ft) coupled to the 12-speed mDrive transmission and Mack Air Ride rear suspension.

From there, it’s another two months in Brisbane having the custom bulbar fitted by King Bars, the icepack installed by Haultech Engineering and hydraulics (when needed) by Mr Wong Hydraulics. Over at Joe Bradley Fibreglass, the interior receives additional cupboards and a stand-up fridge, TV and microwave. The trucks also get an LED interior light upgrade. While that’s all happening, Hunter Valley Seat Specialists re-upholsters the seats to match the unique colour scheme, embossing the Outlaw branding and Mack bulldog for that extra special touch.

Bel Air Truck Spraypainting gives each truck its unique colour in the Outlaw scheme before it’s shipped off to Newcastle-based Showman Signs to apply the Outlaw- specific signwriting in the best tradition – by-hand. Bling Man HQ Custom Stainless in Kentville, outside Brisbane, creates the various custom Outlaw stainless pieces.

“All 13 suppliers involved in the build are our trusted suppliers. They know the quality we need and understand how the customers will use their trucks. It works very well. The closer your relationship with a supplier, the better everything turns out,” says John.

Finally, in Tamworth, the likes of turntables and driving lights are fitted. After three months of loving custom work, the keys are finally handed over to the lucky owner. All good things are worth waiting for…

Outlaw 1 at work.

John Saint, the most wanted when it comes to the Outlaw series. Photo: Aitken Automotive Photography.

“The following the Outlaw trucks has received is based on being able to buy a truck fully optioned, without having to do anything to it – and hopefully we’ve done that fairly well, so people can distinguish them from any others,” John says humbly. “From the dealer perspective, it’s worked very well.”

One more question needs answering, though… why the name Outlaw?

“We wanted something that stood out – different, bold, strong… out there. I think an ‘outlaw’ is one of those figures. I’m not really sure how we came to it, but it works. It’s a good name.”

And a cool concept… so much so that, being a dealer of all three Volvo Group Australia products, JT Fossey has just launched its Volvo Viking series. This will be even more limited than Outlaw, with just seven FH16 XXL Globetrotters all named after some of the most prominent gods and goddesses of Norse (Vikings) mythology. Of course, the initial plan for Outlaw was only five trucks…