The Bedford TM was a heavy goods vehicle constructed by Bedford Vehicles, the British arm of General Motors' commercial vehicle division, between 1974 and 1986. Up until the TM, Bedford had been building mostly low-specification short haul distribution trucks, such as the Bedford TK and KM. In view of the increasing popularity of high cab "luxury" cabs in the maximum weight long distance category, such as the Volvo F88, Scania 110 and Leyland Marathon, Bedford designed the TM as a competitor.
Through its lifespan, it was available with a Detroit Diesel two-stroke V8 and V6, Bedford 500 turbo engine or a Cummins L10 - coupled to either a Fuller or Spicer transmission, and a Soma rear axle. The Detroit engine was not a successful choice in the UK. Because of its high-revving characteristics, it proved unpopular with drivers, who were used to slow revving, long stroke, UK diesels. It was also disliked by operators because of its poor fuel economy.
Available as either an articulated tractor unit, or as a rigid, in either wide or narrow day and sleeper cabs, the TM was actually a highly competent vehicle, and over the years was a common sight with some of the larger UK operators. It offered new standards of comfort and refinement especially for a Bedford.
End of production
The model finally bowed out in 1986, with the collapse of its parent company; the UK military continues to use some four-wheel drive and six-wheel drive TMs but they are being replaced by more modern trucks produced by MAN SE.