International ProStar is a Working Class Truck

  The International ProStar is a working class truck. Its arrival in Australia and marks yet another return to the Australian truck market for the iconic brand. This time around the International brand is based back at its historic home in Dandenong in Victoria. Diesel News, went along there to try out the brand’s latest offerings.     It has been a long time coming, but the International ProStar is now on the street in Australia. As the pioneer of the return of International brand to the trucking market, the ProStar model keeps it simple, with only a few specification variations and a no-nonsense set-up.   In many ways, the new ProStar embodies a lot of the traditional virtues associated with the International brand over its many decades of history in Australia. The ‘Inter’ has always been a truck that is designed to do the job without any issues and often without much sophistication.   Trucks like the Acco and the S line became models that were successful because they did the job in a simple way and kept on doing it consistently. This was at the heart of what the Aussie truck buyer liked about International.     It would be harsh to say the ProStar lacks sophistication. It does have state-of-the-art electrical infrastructure and is powered by the Cummins X15 which certainly doesn’t lack in that department. The bonnet and cabin design are also well designed to provide good aerodynamic performance, a major pillar behind the model’s success in the US truck market.   When Iveco signed up to reintroduce the International brand here it was a matter of harking back to the historic association between the brands, but also looking for a practical and pragmatic truck to fulfil a need in the Australian truck market. A 6×4 truck with a Cummins engine, Eaton transmission, well-known driveline and a robust chassis will always find a home here. This is the kind of truck the Australian truck industry grew up on.   For the purposes of this test drive, Diesel took a ProStar tipper and quad dog out for a trip around Melbourne and out into Gippsland to get a feel for an Inter in its natural environment. There was enough city, highway and hilly driving to get a real idea of where this new model is at.     KISS Principle   The ProStar is not a dumbed down truck but it does come with a pretty slim options list. There is only one engine. Luckily, that one option is the Cummins X15, normally rated at 550hp (410kW) and pumping out 2508Nm (1850 ft lb) of torque,...

Read More

It’s All Over the Twitterverse

It’s all over the Twitterverse today, VW to buy Navistar, car headlights warning and a trailblazing female road train truckie. A takeover of the International brand by Volkswagen is looking likely, and VW are also in talks with Hino over a technology and marketing sharing deal: VW Truck Signals Interest in Acquiring All of Navistar https://t.co/QIQ2SI2qUr — David Lee Cullen (@David_L_Cullen) April 16, 2018 Pay attention car drivers! We can’t see you in the rain when you don’t have your lights on: Safety message boys and girls. If its raining turn your lights on. Big trucks like mine have enough blind spots. This is how you look to us when it’s raining. Give yourself a better chance to be seen. pic.twitter.com/kQW3MTIkWN — Oz (Mike) (@theoztrucker) April 13, 2018 Looking back on her trailblazing road train life: Violet Langley went behind the wheels of a road train and made a career out of it https://t.co/355rH87cbI — NatRoad (@NatRoad_AUS) April 17,...

Read More

Eaton and Cummins Getting Closer

This video from the US shows us Eaton and Cummins getting closer as they offer a more integrated driveline to US truck buyers. This particular AMT has just gone on sale in the US and is not destined to appear here for some time.   The gearbox is part of a comprehensive program where Eaton and Cummins are working very closely together to come up with a fully integrated package. The engine and transmission communicate seamlessly with each other and with whichever truck they are fitted into.   Both Eaton and Cummins have seen a series of developments in the US truck market making it more and more obvious the future for many truck buyers is to look at buying trucks with a proprietary driveline.   Volvo, Mack, Freightliner and Western Star are all available as a truck with a chassis, engine and gearbox all supplied by the same company. For Daimler Trucks the elements are branded as Detroit but are clearly from the same entity, Some elements on the Mack driveline are branded Mack, but come from the same source as the Volvo elements.   The odd ones out are International and the Paccar brands, Kenworth and Peterbilt. Paccar and International do have their own engines but no history with gearboxes. They also sell a lot of their trucks with someone else’s engine, Cummins. Transmissions come from either Eaton or Allison, but predominantly Eaton.   To protect their position in the US market, the two component suppliers, Eaton and Cummins have started to work more and more closely together top create a kind of ‘proprietary’ driveline for Paccar and International.   International have become more and more reliant on Cummins as their own engine program has been in some disarray following its failed 15 litre engine program which got into regulatory strife a few years back. At the time, Cummins stepped into the breach and supplied the engines to enable the Chicago-based truck maker to continue in the heavy duty truck business.   Paccar are in the engine business, but have not been willing to invest the kind of vast funds needed to develop a 15 litre engine to go in their heavy duty offering. Instead, the company has worked closely with both Eaton and Cummins to get a virtual proprietary driveline....

Read More

Electric Inter, Volvo and LNG, Iveco and Suttons

Not only is there an Electric Inter, Volvo and LNG, Iveco and Suttons, plus a New Auto from Eaton/Cummins in Diesel News, but also Daimler Platooning and an Electric Van.   Eaton Cummins Automated Transmission Technologies has introduced the new Endurant TM 12- speed automated transmission at the North American Commercial Vehicle (NACV) show in Atlanta, in the US. Claimed to be the lightest, most efficient 1,850 ft lb–capable heavy-duty transmission on the US market, it has been designed for line-haul applications where weight savings and efficiency can add to a fleet’s bottom line, Endurant weighs nearly 50kg less than competitive automated manual transmissions (AMTs).   “We are excited to introduce our customers to this game-changing transmission,” said Scott Davis, General Manager, Eaton Cummins Automated Transmission Technologies. “Fleets will find that Endurant has been intelligently engineered from the ground up with features that protect your investment and make it easy to maintain. With a sophisticated communication system between the engine and transmission software, Endurant promises to deliver industry-best performance and reliability, fuel efficiency, reduced maintenance, and driver comfort features.”     International Electric Truck   Also at the NACV, International was talking about a new electric truck in the pipeline, coming through the US truck maker’s increasingly close relationship with Volkswagen.   “Our alliance with VW is allowing us to move much more quickly into electric propulsion thanks to our ability to leverage their technology investments and components in segments of the market where we’re already a leader,” said Troy A. Clarke, Chairman, President and CEO, Navistar. “We believe the Class 6/7 vehicle is ideal for electric powertrain solutions in the near term, given its abundance of packaging space, and that these vehicles typically run short distances and can depot to recharge at the end of the day.”   Suttons Takes On Iveco   New South Wales dealership group, Suttons Motors, has taken over the operations of Iveco Sydney. Suttons assumed ownership of Iveco’s largest NSW-based dealership and is already well progressed in consolidating its operations.   “Suttons Motors saw enormous potential in the Iveco product range,” said Daniel Glynn, new Sydney Iveco General Manager. “With a model range spanning everything from passenger car licence vans and light trucks through to road train prime movers, we can offer a transport solution to anybody who walks through the dealership doors.”   LNG For Volvo   According to Volvo Trucks, liquefied natural gas (LNG) is the best available climate alternative on the market for heavy regional and long-haul transport operations. By replacing diesel with liquefied natural gas or biogas, CO emissions from heavy trucks can be drastically reduced. Liquefied gas is...

Read More

Rejig and Rebuild

The Green Diamond is getting broken down so the structure can go through a rejig and rebuild process. Each part is being lovingly dismantled and then restored to its former glory. This episode shows the breaking down of the entire truck so individual components can be restored, before the reconstruction can begin. The team doing the rebuild are getting some great help from a number of people and organisations. All are offering their services for free to help the project raise as much as it can for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) and to help those living with the disease. National Transport Insurance (NTI) came up with this project after its former CEO, Wayne Patterson, was found to be suffering from MND himself. The truck insurer has developed a fundraising project in which this old International K5 from 1946 will be brought back to life. Want to get involved? The simplest way to help is to enter the raffle at http://www.mndandme.com.au, to win the truck after the restoration is complete. “The restored, operational truck will be a culmination of time, energy, skill and resources generously contributed by NTI’s people, suppliers, partners and industry affiliates”, says NTI CEO, Tony Clark. “It’s a truck built for the community, by the community. It will bring people together and tell a story, while serving a much greater purpose.” It is projects like this that show how different the trucking community is to so many other industries. People get stuck in and support each other when the going gets tough, in an industry that is known for its cutthroat attitude and competitive pricing. This kind of project illustrates the community nature of trucking and gives many people an opportunity to give back to their community. Diesel News wishes the team good luck and hopes to see the completed restoration raising the kind of big funding it...

Read More

International Trucks, Safety, Innovation, Top Technicians and an Electric Truck

There are Awards and Dealerships this week for International Trucks, Safety, Innovation, Top Technicians and an Electric Truck. Iveco has announced five more dealerships to oversee the sales, service and parts support for the reintroduced International truck range in Australia. The latest appointments include Black Truck Sales and Honeycombes Sales & Service in Queensland, Sydney Truck & Machinery Centre in New South Wales, Bendigo Truck Centre in Victoria and Purcher International in Western Australia.   These join an initial group of 11 outlets, further increasing coverage for potential Inter owners, and as with the original appointments, the new dealerships are all current Iveco dealers as well as authorised Cummins service outlets.   Safety Innovation Award   The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR)/the Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA) Safety Innovation Award is a joint government-industry initiative that recognises and rewards rural road transport operators who have identified Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) related safety risks and implemented successful, innovative control measures.   The award will be announced at the Livestock and Rural Transporters Association of Victoria (LRTAV) conference on 11 August in Torquay, Victoria.   The finalists for the award are:   Athol Carter, Frasers Transport, QLD Undertook a complete organisational safety review and implemented processes and training to improve operations where safety improvement opportunities were identified.   Dean Clarke, Hopkins Transport, NSW Instilled an emphasis on correctly and consistently performing safe operating procedures through the roll out of an organisation-wide program.   Graham Hoare, Martin Group, NSW Introduced lower speeds set in speed limiter and a GPS-based alert system for speeding. Achieved 90 per cent less speed occurrence since introduction of new systems.   Marcus Watson, Marley’s Transport, WA Installed seeing machines to fleet vehicles identified as high risk. This influenced safer driving behaviour and reduced driver fatigue and loss of concentration on the road.   Peter Callanan, Shanahan’s Livestock Transport, VIC Improved carrier-customer communications and expectations to more safely and better manage livestock loads and driver rest.   Ron Harvey, Dennis Transport, SA Undertook extensive review into safety risks to improve safety procedures. Introduced measures to counter identified risks such as live fatigue feeds, GPS vehicle tracking, speed controls and safety refresher training.     Master Technician Penske Power Systems has awarded Scott Simpson as the Detroit Master Technician for 2017. A technician from Penske Power Systems’ Hunter Valley branch, Simpson was the winner of the annual skills test which sees the best Detroit technicians from around the business compete for the spoils.   Simpson edged out five other finalists in the final round on Friday which included major diagnostic and troubleshooting tasks, assessed by a panel of judges. The in-house...

Read More
3 pages